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I ws reading a thread on the teachers forum about the 'performance' quality in exams and it occured to me that many people have said the same about auditions, that it is better to smile and look like youre having fun. HOw does one smile during a class, especially when one is nervous, without feeling idiotic or painted-on? i usually end up smiling when i mess up, but especially when im concentrating on a simple exercise i get very tense and cannot hold a pleasant expression. Any tips?

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Constanza, it's not really about smiling all the time, but about an overall "happy to be here, loving to dance" countenance! :angry: It's an attitude, an openness, an "I'm here to dance and to learn" feeling that one gets when one looks at you. It's also an ability to shed your self consciousness and respond to the movement and especially the music.


All of this won't come about through "tips", however. It mostly comes from confidence. A dancer who feels good about herself and her work will likely have a good bit more confidence than one who is worried and concerned and nervous. It's about performance, and is something that some dancers just seem to have innately, and others must develop over the years. I always found the music to be the most help to me in allowing myself to just dance and enjoy it, and lose the tension and nervousness inherent in exams and auditions.

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It's more of a Mona Lisa sort of thing. Is she actually smiling, or does she just wear a pleasant expression? It's a good example of Sir Frederick Ashton's advice, "I don't want any of your grin, just do it with the eyes!" And if you can't be confident after an entire term of syllabus classes, you never will be.

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Yes, I have moments like that, when i really get into the movement and have fun with it, I was even told at an audition by a dancer i didnt know that i was fun to watch, but it is hard to not be a struggling perfectionist at barre, and certainly adagios... I will try, though, and thank you very much!

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