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Audition: Video


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I saw a call for choreographers' video submissions recently, but wanted to ask about the audition fees. To audition one's work for this company's productions in either the U.S. or Europe was $100, $200 to audition for both together. Do choreographers' audition fees generally vary on a scale in relationship to the profile of the company, or is there an average expected fee? Also, are audition fees for choreographers' submissions a usual practice, or just for a few companies?

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Say what???????? $100-$200 just to submit a video???? :o I wish I had that job.... :blink:


I wouldn't waste my money in that way unless I was Donald Trump and could afford a solid gold toilet. :)

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I concur with Clara. I know the American dollar is headed about as far south as the old Italian Lyra, but that's ridiculous. Most legitimate organizations only charge postage and handling fees. Exorbitant fees are usually the calling cards of pariahs and confidence games. Important: do your research. Make suer they are fully vetted and have bona fide, (not self promoted) references made about them.




So, here is what -I think- the kind of organization you have read about is. I hope I am wrong (I have never encountered a representing organization is based in the US, but there is always a first), but I doubt it. I've been in the career counseling biz for artists and performers for quite a few years now and I've consulted young performers this dozens of times. Please know, this is worse case scenario, but there are many such coercive organizations out there, who want to get what they can out of you and leave you to waste when they are done with you!


These are commercially oriented "competition" type of organizations. They usually focus upon "open calls" for performers, but it makes sense that they would tap somewhat uninformed choreographers as well. when you submit your work, they contact you to then submit another - yes, for an additional fee. If not, they ask you to show up to an open interview, with either more videos of your work, and/or to bring your dancers to a specific place, (theatre or studio) to do a "second call". Of course, then they charge you a lot more than $200. (for performers, I've heard as high as $500, but I don't think $1000 would be out of the question for these folks.)


Let's assume you bite. They decide that they "like you"...(for that kind of money, you can assume that they will like anyone dumb enough to pay that kind of dough! Indeed, many organization accept 90% of the people who go this far). They -might- have you perform another "routine" or work for them. (You guessed it: they'll charge you for that too, or they'll say "we're throwing this one for free!") Then they say, "Look, we like what we're seeing. But, we need to train you in the style of work we need on stage. After a short and, for someone as accomplished as you (butter, butter, butter), it will be a short and easy training session in sunny Palm Beach!" (Yes Virginia, you'll pay for that and big time: count on a minimum of $5000).


If you still are "doozy potzy" enough to fall for that, they'll "train you" to choreograph routines for modeling shows. BTW: there may be as many as 8 choreographers who have gone through the same track as you, sharing duties on the same show, runway show, or travesty they stage...but, you probably won't get paid well, but if you do expect their representation fee to be astromomical. (Thats right - they may also be a modeling agency that has pulled the same garbage on unsuspecting girls and their parents) Or, they'll recommend you to dance studios around the region or country that focus upon the competition scene. You may get jobs choreographing there - and you -might- be paid well! But, with their fees and your expenses, you'll barely pay any debt off to the organization, you way. Such organizations further their insidious requirements by asking for extra fee, and using "positive thinking" propaganda to keep you on board.


These organizations are based upon the "Barbizon" marketing model, known as a "modeling scam": they interview you, charge you, accept you, charge you, train you, charge you, represent you, charge you and get paid little for low level "do you want fries with that" kind of jobs. here's the clincher they know most people don't have the discretionary funds to afford to pay, so they set you up with a "vig". this means, they'll finance it for you, but you'll be charged an impossible-to-repay interest rate, they will "own you" for as long as they can suck the monetary blood out of you.. It is a type of just barely legal indentured servitude that you don't want to get involved with. Its a type of fraud. Its similar to what credit card, and service agencies do when charging multiple fees on top of a stated fee. Auto sales used to get away with this all the time. The current mortgage foreclosure crisis was predicated on a more sophisticated take on this same kind of coercion.


I get emails from European agencies promoting this kind o' garbage all the time. I always make a note to them and save the emails. Many are based in Czech Republic, Poland, Spain and Italy. They advertise "Dance and choreographers festivals" or "competitions". Some are legitimate, some are not - do your research very carefully. If yours is based in the US, this is a first that I've encountered.... However, many of the lesser fly by night dance competitions and beauty pageants also use pared down versions of these techniques.


Caveat Emptor, mon ami! Please let us know what you find out.



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Very valuable information, Philip, thank you. :thumbsup:

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Thank you for your response and very helpful information. I had that response when I saw the fee, the "what else are they planning to screw young choreographers" but wanted to make sure I wasn't just being naive.

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