Creating great choreography doesn’t happen overnight, it takes time and effort. To help prepare you for your creative dance journey ahead, we’ve come up with a list of do’s and don’ts that all new choreographers should consider.
Do Come up With a Plan
Have a certain song in mind? What about a number of dancers? It’s important to have a plan before you begin creating your own choreography.
To start, we suggest choosing a song that fits your style of dance. The two should go hand in hand. If you’re not sure where to begin, look up YouTube videos, or better yet, attend a live performance for inspiration!
Once you’ve chosen a piece (or pieces!) of music, it’s time to decide on a number of dancers. Think about the message you want to portray. If you’d like to present a work that tackles themes like diversity, relationships or interconnectedness, consider using a medium or large group of dancers to represent community. If you’re leaning more toward a piece about self-reflection or inner focus, perhaps a single dancer or a small group would be better to support your vision.
Don’t Limit Yourself to One Dance Style
If you’re looking to create a routine that’s more avant-garde, why not include another style of dance? Modern, jazz, hip-hop, contemporary – all of these styles have roots in the tradition of classical ballet! By mixing and matching elements or themes from these different styles in your choreography, you can create a style of movement that’s unique to you.
Don’t Overthink it
Let your body move to the music. Get creative. Authenticity is what makes dance captivating. People are drawn to works that showcase humanness and reflect the choreographer’s personality, so don’t overthink every single step or worry about getting it right the first time. You can always change something later once you see it in motion.
Do Videotape Yourself and Your Dancers
Pressing play on your camera or phone before you start choreographing movement can really help you remember certain sequences and can let you see what your piece is starting to look like. Once you’ve got it down, the video also serves as a teaching tool for your dancers to playback for better retention and to see how they can keep improving.
Do Push Yourself
Well-known ballet choreographer Justin Peck recently told azcentral “With each piece, I usually start by setting up certain parameters, certain rules that help to shape the final outcome. The reason to do that is to push myself to broaden the spectrum of choreography that I’m doing, so I don’t get stuck in a rut and I’m being continuously challenged.”
Do See A Live Performance
There’s no better way to get inspired than to attend a live performance. Ballet Arizona has several performances coming up that will get your creative juices flowing. We invite you to attend an upcoming show – if you get there early on Thursdays or Fridays, or stay after the matinee performance on Saturdays, you might even have a chance to speak to one of our dancers or choreographers about the process at one of our pre- or post-performance chats. Take a look at what’s coming up here.