Are you a junior (under the age of 18) and interested in joining a junior dance team? Awesome! You've come to the right place.
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Being on a junior dance team is different in many ways from being on a collegiate team or project. There are certain things you should keep in mind when auditioning for one. Marc Dizon is the director GRaVy Babies, GRV's junior dance team. Here, Marc shares with us 5 tips for anybody interested in dancing on a junior team!
Start by researching and finding out what junior teams are currently in your dance community.
You can do this by asking friends/family that are already involved in the dance community and having them tell you the names of some junior teams.
You can also watch videos on YouTube of performances from different junior teams.
Most major hip hop dance competitions (such as Bridge, Vibe, WOD, and Body Rock) have a competition for the junior division as well.
After you have familiarized yourself with some names of teams and watched videos their performances, you can decide if there is a particular team you may want to join.
This decision can be based on a number of factors:
You may want to join a certain team because you like their style of dance/choreography, or maybe you have a couple of friends on the team, or the reason could be as simple as "they rehearse closest to where I live."
After you have checked out some teams, try and find out when these teams will be holding their next audition.
Use social media! Most teams have Facebook and Instagram accounts where they market their events.
Take as many classes as possible!
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It is so important to make sure that you develop proper techniques and fundamentals from a young age in order to build a strong dance foundation.
This starts with making sure that you take any class possible to help you better understand your body and how it moves.
Start with beginner level classes. These classes can teach you the basics and fundamentals of hip hop and dance in general.
Being able to learn choreography and execute correctly is important; however, understanding how to groove, dance, and genuinely feel the music is something that is so important yet so undervalued.
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Take intermediate and/or advanced level classes as well.
This will challenge you and will help increase your ability to learn and to retain choreography.
After you take a class, make sure you go home and master the choreography you learned.
Being able to dance at the same level as Bam Martin or Pat Cruz is not going to happen overnight.
So many dancers want to skip the basics and jump straight into becoming the next big dancer/choreographer, but they forget that all the truly successful dancers/choreographers started with an extremely strong foundation and understanding of dance.
Be patient with your growth and understand that you are still young and improvement can take time and hard work.
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As you take classes and dance more, you will learn how to utilize certain muscles in order to properly execute choreography you learn.
However, dancing is not just a physical activity. Dancing requires a lot of mental ability as well.
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In order to physically execute movements correctly, you have to understand the intricacies of each movement.
Try to understand the details of each movement and focus on applying these details as you practice routines at home.
This will help you properly analyze movements in terms of execution, body posture, levels, arm/leg placement, texture, timing, feeling, intention, etc.
There are so many amazing junior teams in the community, so take a chance and audition for one!
Most teams are not only looking for talented dancers.
During auditions, myself and the two directors of GRaVy Babies (David Lim & Jesse Trinidad) are especially interested in finding kids that have potential and are willing to work hard to improve themselves and the team.
"Hard work beats talent, when talent fails to work hard." - Kevin Durant.
Dancers with a good work ethic and positive attitude are amazing people to have on a team.
Even if you do not make the team the first time, do not be discouraged!
Keep training to improve your dancing and gain confidence and you will eventually reach your goal.
See Related Article: How To Cope With Not Making Your “Dream” Dance Team
A great way to improve your dancing is to ask questions and get critiques from choreographers.
The beautiful thing about the dance community is that everyone loves to share all of their dance knowledge – which makes community dancers/choreographers a great resource for young/upcoming dancers.
When auditioning for a team, introduce yourself to the directors. Ask them for critiques and tips to improve.
This is also a great opportunity to ask them questions about the audition process and what they expect from the dancers. Make sure you do your best to apply what they say to your actual audition.
This shows your eagerness to learn and your ability to take critiques and apply them to your dancing. It definitely resonates well with me when it comes time to judge auditions.
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Being able to dance is a big time commitment.
Do not let dance supersede other obligations that are also important – such as your academics.
See Related Video: How To Balance School And Dance | Dancer Rants #3 | STEEZY Originals
Do your best to do well in school and your parents will be more comfortable letting you audition for a dance team.
Realize that, for the most part, your parents will be the ones supporting you by driving you to and from classes/rehearsals, paying for your monthly tuition/competition fees/costumes, supporting you at shows/competitions, etc.
The best way to show your appreciation is to respect them and give your best efforts to do well in school.
See Related Article: How To Keep Dancing When Your Parents Don’t Support It
Be responsible when it comes to studying and finishing your school work, so you won't have to worry about missing that amazing class from your favorite choreographer or missing rehearsal!
Hope this helped give you some insight on how to join a junior dance team! Remember – this is only the beginning of your journey. We can't wait to see where you go from here!Thank you Marc for sharing your wisdom with us!Have any tips you wanna share? Any questions we didn't answer? Comment below! Get some extra training in before auditions – with STEEZY Studio! Take beginner, intermediate, or advanced level classes from the best choreographers in the community.This article was originally published on September 4, 2014.