Dance Audition Information

​​​​​​Students wishing to major or minor in Dance at Grand Valley State University should complete an online application for the Dance Program, where you will choose your audition date.  Students are encouraged to audition early, as scholarships are limited. 

Scholarships are awarded on the basis of individual talent and potential, and are renewable annually if performance and academic standards are maintained.


Audition Dates 2020-2021

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, all Grand Valley auditions for the dance major and minor will be held virtually during the 2020-2021 academic year.

dance

Photo by Darren Breen

2020-21 Audition Process

For Fall 2021 Entry

1. Complete the Application for Dance Admission and Scholarship

2. Submit an audition video (requirements and link for submission will be sent after completed application/more info below).

3. Personal Interview: Once we've had a chance to review your application, you will be asked to an interview with dance faculty and current students. These interviews will take place on Zoom, and will be scheduled for the dates below. 

Interview Day #1: Friday, October 16th: For applicants who submit their videos by Friday, October 9th.
Interview Day #2: Friday, November 13th: For applicants who submit their videos by Friday, November 6th.
Interview Day #3: Friday, February 12th: For applicants who submit their videos by Friday, February 5th.
Interview Day #4: Friday, March 12th: For applicants who submit their videos by Friday, March 5th.

 

Interview Day #1: Friday, October 16th

  • For students who complete steps 1 and 2 above by Friday, October 9th.
     
  • Faculty will review audition videos and schedule personal interviews. 
     
  • Parent/Student Information Meeting will be from 3-4 p.m. EST on the same day.

Interview Day #2: Friday, November 13th

  • For students who complete steps 1 and 2 above by Friday, November 6th.
     
  • Faculty will review audition videos and schedule personal interviews. 
     
  • Parent/Student Information Meeting will be from 3-4 p.m. EST on the same day.

Interview Day #3: Friday, February 12th

  • For students who complete steps 1 and 2 above by Friday, February 5th.
     
  • Faculty will review audition videos and schedule personal interviews. 
     
  • Parent/Student Information Meeting will be from 5-6 p.m. EST on the same day.

Interview Day #4: Friday, March 12th

  • For students who complete steps 1 and 2 above by Friday, March 5th.
     
  • Faculty will review audition videos and schedule personal interviews. 
     
  • Parent/Student Information Meeting will be from 5-6 p.m. EST on the same day.

Audition Video Requirements

After you complete the Application for Dance Program Admission and Scholarship, you will receive an email with detailed instructions for submitting your audition video. The audition will consist of performing a few combinations set by the faculty, and a 1-2 minute solo piece. 

If you submit your video prior to October 9th, you will interview on Friday, October 16th.
If you submit your video between October 10th and November 6th, you will interview on Friday, November 13th.
If you submit your video between November 7th and February 5th, you will interview on Friday, February 12th.
If you submit your video between February 6th and March 5th, you will interview on Friday, March 12th. 


Frequently Asked Questions

What are you looking for at auditions?
The dance faculty are looking for safe and purposeful activation of alignment, intelligent application of movement information, and how you bring life to movement with your dynamics, personal voice, and artistry.

How do I audition for a dance merit scholarship?
There are no additional steps to be considered for a dance merit scholarship. All students accepted as dance majors are automatically considered for scholarship. Awards are typically made in spring after most auditionees have been seen. Scholarships cover a portion of tuition (not full tuition) and range in size. Dance merit scholarships will be renewed for the student’s sophomore, junior, and senior years as a dance major if they maintain GPA and dance enrollment requirements. There are additional academic and need-based scholarship opportunities through the university. We encourage you to reach out to the GVSU Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships for more information:https://www.gvsu.edu/financialaid/.

How should I prepare for my audition?
Whether auditioning in person or via video link, have confidence in the time you have devoted to dance thus far. Treat auditions as a free class or showing – an opportunity to share how you learn and try things and fulfill movement possibilities. We are not looking for perfection. We are looking for openness, artistry, and the knowledge of how to move efficiently and effectively in your unique physical instrument.

What kind of solo should I show?
The solo portion of the audition is intended as a chance for you to show us where you live and shine in dance. Choose the style(s) that let you best share your strengths in movement and artistry.

When will I hear the results from my audition?
If you have been accepted by GVSU, you should hear audition results two weeks following your audition date. If not yet accepted by GVSU, you will not hear the results until this step is complete.

What will my audition results say?
You may be accepted as a dance major, accepted as a dance minor, or declined.

  • If accepted as a dance major, the audition panel feels you are fully ready for the rigor of the program. You might also receive acceptance as a dance major if you expressed interest in a dance minor instead. This simply lets you choose either a major or minor in the program through your first year without additional steps. Only dance majors are considered for merit scholarships.
  • If accepted as a dance minor, we see potential in what you bring and want to help you foster it. Some dance minors, after demonstrating a first year of strong growth, transition into dance majors. Others find that the minor is the right fit for their goals. Either way, the first year dance schedule gives dancers time to make informed choices about the place of dance in their collegiate education.
  • If declined, you are welcome to audition again! Some students grow considerably over the course of their audition year and some benefit from multiple experiences auditioning and receiving feedback (available upon request). The study of dance is a process of growth, and we welcome the chance to see how your work has developed from one audition to the next. A decline is not a judgement of your dancing or passion; rather, it is the pedagogical perception that the program may not be the best fit for you at this time.

What do dance majors and minors study in college? 
Dance study involves practice and theory in and beyond the studio. A variety of technique courses, choreography courses, dance history courses, performance opportunities, and specialized courses like pedagogy and costuming complement each other to develop a wholistic perspective on the growing possibilities of our field. Dance majors have more extensive requirements than minors, but both benefit from how studio and classroom studies intersect to deepen each other.

Can I double major or minor in another discipline?
A large number of our students choose to double major or to minor in other fields; others devote themselves to a single major in dance. Our program offerings, scheduling, and performance opportunities have been crafted to be both challenging and flexible to honor a variety of paths. Dance is growing in many interdisciplinary directions, Talk to the dance faculty and faculty within your other department(s) of interest to find out more about how to create the best pathway to your personal educational goals.

What performance opportunities exist?
Freshman Dance Company (first year majors and minors) and Dance Company (continuing dance majors) typically perform in two fully produced proscenium stage shows a year. These showcase faculty and guest artist choreography in a variety of dance styles and include a full tech week, lighting, and costuming. Many additional opportunities exist including (but not limited to) senior capstone shows, Oakland Dance Festival, American College Dance Association conferences, touring school/community performances, faculty choreographic research projects, ArtPrize/Project X, student choreographic projects, halftime showcases with the Laker Marching Band, student dance organization performances, and more.

Why should I choose GVSU Dance?
Our program is intentionally small giving faculty the chance to get to know you, your goals, and how to best help you move toward them during your time with us and after graduation! Particular strengths of our program include the number and generosity of our guest artists, the personal attention in class that comes with a program of our size, the ability to focus intently on dance or to expand study into double majors/minors in other fields, and the atmosphere of the program. Our students and faculty find that they gain the most from approaching challenges in a supportive community where they see their peers as inspirations and future colleagues rather than competitors.

How does the Dance Program prepare me for a career in dance?
The field of dance today has expanded far beyond performance. Technology, business, advertising and public relations, teaching, exercise science, and more all intersect with what it means to be a dancer today. Our program provides opportunities to learn about dance for the camera, personal website and portfolio creation, making promotional materials, dance pedagogy, physical practices like conditioning and somatics that help dancers maintain their practice, and more. When combined with strong technique classes and performance opportunities, our students are prepared for entering today’s expanded field of dance.

What do GV dance alumni do?
Our alumni use their dance studies in varied and individualized ways. Some perform with companies like Giordano Dance Chicago, Missouri Contemporary Ballet, Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre, Chicago Repertory Ballet, Thodos Dance Chicago, Minnesota Ballet, Columbia City Ballet, and The Big Muddy Dance Company; some freelance with numerous choreographers and dance styles in cities like New York City, Los Angeles, or Chicago; some go on to study physical therapy or become personal trainers; some become part-time or full-time dance teachers or studio owners; some pursue commercial dance and entertainment work with companies like Disney; and some pursue graduate degrees or careers as lawyers, biologists, or non-profit administrators. Wherever students end up, during their time at GVSU we work to build their network of dance connections around the country through high-impact experiences with visiting guest artists. These artists share a wealth of perspectives, dance styles, and creative processes that reflect their own unique professional experiences in locations across the country, and that help our students expand their understanding of the ways dance can form and inform their lives.