What If The Judges Don’t Like Me?
It’s your first solo. Congratulations! Back in June when you auditioned, a solo seemed like a great idea. Now that your first competition is staring you in the face, you’re not so sure. In fact, you’re terrified. What if you forget your choreography? What if you trip? Worst of all, what if the judges don’t like you?
Everyone forgets their choreography at one time or another. Just stay calm and keep going. Listen to the music. Something will trigger your memory and you’ll flow easily back into your choreography. The only people who know the choreography are you and your teacher. As long as your face stays calm, you can make up whatever you want and the judges will never know.
Is ‘awfullizing’ a word? It should be. It’s what you’re doing when you imagine the worst outcomes for yourself. Worrying about things that haven’t happened, and probably won’t happen, is like eating too much sugar and then wondering why you feel sick. Stop sabotaging yourself. Awfullizing is a waste of time.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of wondering what the judges are thinking as you dance under those glaring stage lights, but worrying about what they’re thinking won’t make you dance any better. In fact, you may not dance as well because your attention is divided. Just dance!
Judges are professional dancers, dance instructors, and choreographers who want to help the next generation of young dancers improve their skills and become better dancers.
However, you must understand that the judges have to be as objective as they can possibly be, and there will always be someone who is a more skilled dancer than you. Maybe they’ve danced longer. Maybe they take more ballet classes. Maybe they have private lessons.
You must also keep in mind that, just as someone else may be more skilled than you, you will be more skilled than someone else. At every competition. Every time. Don’t get caught up in winning. You’ll ruin all your fun. Be happy and proud of how good you really are, and choose to be inspired by someone who is better than you.
Dance like no one is watching, or dance like everyone watching loves to watch you dance, however you dance. And dance from your heart.
After 12 years as a competitive dance mom, Jan Earnshaw is so happy to be able to share the benefit of her experience with the other families at Dance Extreme. Jan says that supporting her daughter Maggie Kelly, throughout her time on Dance Extreme’s competitive dance troupe and now, as she pursues a professional career in dance, “has been one of the greatest joys in life”. Maggie is currently attending the Joffrey School of Ballet.