Let’s look at the whole process of an Arthur Murray dance showcase, starting before you even set foot onto the ballroom…
Participating in ballroom dance showcases has many benefits. If you are looking to broaden your horizons, dancing in this setting will give you a taste of what the performance style feels compared to social dancing. If you are looking to raise the bar for yourself, setting a goal to participate in a showcase will give you motivation to work even harder in your lessons and classes. And, as a result, you will see your confidence skyrocket as you get the chance to show off your progress!
Before you leave to participate in any sort of showcase, there’s the practice time put in at the studio! All this hard work will help ensure your confidence in yourself and your partner stays strong. Use your personal lessons to work on the dances that you will be performing, the group lessons to practice and build muscle memory and the parties to get comfortable dancing with other people. If you’re performing a solo routine, maybe try it out in the studio first to get the first-time nerves out of the way! If you find you are prone to the pre-performance jitters, then read up on this blog post to beat the performance anxiety before it even has a fighting chance!
When the actual day of the competition comes around, it’s time to look your best! Some dancers choose to get all primped and primed on their own, but others hire someone else to help them with their hair and makeup. Ask your teacher for help if you have any questions. Not only is it important to get ready on the outside, but also on the inside! Don’t let any nerves or forgetfulness make you skip out on a nutritious breakfast.
If you feel you are ready early, you can head over to the ballroom, where the DJ will open the floor up early for all competitors to warm up. If you would rather spend your time before the competition off the floor, not to worry! Many dancers also choose to take their time getting dressed up and just spend a couple moments stretching and getting their body warm.
Now, it’s time to step onto the dance floor…
Similar to an Arthur Murray practice party, the floor will be full of dancers. Before you dance or in between your heats, you can expect to have some time where you might need to keep your body warm. Don’t be afraid to take a couple laps around the ballroom to loosen up. To help keep your mind on your dancing, watch for dancers that stand out to you and take note of why they may have caught your eye. You can also look out for new dances or steps to ask your instructor about!
Another way to help make the time go by is to socialize! Everyone who is not already on the dance floor is waiting, just like you. Relax with your friends from your own studio, or reach out and talk to people from another studio! Anyone at the event would welcome the company!
When you are on the floor, give it all you got! You spent so much effort preparing and working hard, it’s time to show the judges what you’re made of! But remember, at the end of the day, this hobby is supposed to be a fun one, so try not to let any mistakes discourage you. You worked hard and every dancer makes mistakes, so just keep dancing and smile your way through!
Finally, you’ve made it!
Be proud of yourself that you made it through the competition, whether it’s your first or thirty-first! What happens after the competition depends on what kind of event you are at. Here are some examples of what you can expect to happen after the competition part of the event.
At Connecticut showcases, there will be dinner and social dancing. At District Showcases and Dance O Ramas, there will be a “pro-show” where the staff will be able to show off what they have been working on too! At Dance O Ramas, this is viewed as a competition.