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"They are poets of gesture."

- George Balanchine, commenting on his dancers.

What we are looking for

At Ellington we are here to teach – prior training is certainly valued, but we are first and foremost evaluating your potential and passion for dance. During your audition we will be looking for students who:

  • Physically and verbally express their passion for the art of dance,
  • Show a strong desire to work diligently on technique,
  • Display a willingness to accept discipline and/or positive correction,
  • Exhibit flexibility, a natural sense of movement, musicality, an innate ability to follow directions, maintain a positive attitude at all times and the physique & stamina appropriate for rigorous dance.

What to bring/how to prepare

Students auditioning for the dance department MUST:

  • Girls: Wear leotards and footless tights, and no dance shoes,
  • Boys: Wear footless tights, sleeveless t-shirt, dance belt (supporter) and no dance shoes,
  • Have hair pulled back, away from face in a tight bun, secured with a thin hairnet,
  • Remove all jewelry,
  • Remove all fingernail and toenail polish.

In addition to the materials sent in for your Ellington application, on or before your arrival for your audition you must provide:

  • A physical from the current school year or a note from your doctor, clearing you for participation in a rigorous dance class.
  • Two (2) 8×10″ photographs: one (1) head shot (portrait) and one (1) full body shot.

The audition process itself

For your audition you will participate in a dance class involving both ballet and modern techniques, as well as strength and conditioning. No solo dances are performed during the audition – you do not need to prepare any choreography!

Dance auditions happen in multiple stages: an initial audition, and then callbacks for selected students. If selected to continue the audition process in callbacks, participation in each session is mandatory in order to be considered for dance at Ellington.

Have a successful audition

Show us you mean business – arrive early, prepared to dance, and with all required documentation. Stay focused. Late arrivals, applicants who are not attired as directed or who do not have all required documentation, as described above, will not be allowed to audition. Due to the high number of dance applicants, dance auditions cannot be rescheduled. You must participate in all days of the dance auditions for which you are selected – dancers who advance beyond the 2-day audition must attend callback and/or final callback auditions as scheduled.