A Little Piece of Advice
I get a lot of private messages asking me how I became a back-up dancer. How can you make dance your full time job, travel the country and abroad performing for thousands of people and get paid for it? Here’s what I tell anyone who seeks to become a successful performer.
The performance world, as you’ve probably gathered, isn’t all smiles and standing ovations. It can be tough – whether you’re in dance, music or arts. There is more talent than there is work, so how do you stand out from the crowd? My first piece of advice is simple: practice. Go to class, listen to your teachers and work hard. Know who inspires you and why. What do they do that grabs your attention? Ask yourself what you want to do in the next few years, set yourself goals and take little steps to achieving them. With the internet making everything so instant it can be hard to remember what hard work and dedication is. Becoming a performer doesn’t happen overnight it take years and years of (sometimes gruelling) practice. I have been training for 20 years and will continue doing so for the rest of my life. After every show I do, I come off and look for footage and immediately watch it back over to find areas I can improve on for next time. Try not to be too hard on yourself, though – dancers are born with thick skin so be kind and give yourself credit when you deserve it. Be patient and your hard work will pay off.
Remember you don’t have to be doing what everyone else is doing, it’s nice to be different and by doing so, you will stand out from the crowd. Know within yourself what is real and stick to it, stay focused on what really matters. All actions are creative and will lead you one step closer to your goal. Work hard, smile and be nice to everyone. Success is a journey not a destination.
To get you going, here are two of the most valuable pieces of advice I got during my full-time training at Brent Street .
Click on the links to watch some videos.
1. ''The second you think you have learnt it all & you think you are the best dancer you can be, quit. A dancer is forever learning and improving–it is an art you commit to forever.” -Kelley Abbey
2. “Take the classes that scare you, step outside your comfort zone, the classes you feel most uncoordinated in are the ones you grow the most in. ” - Stephen Tannos
''Be seen, deeply seen, valuably seen. You are enough. '' - Jacqui Heeney