Students audition on-stage for the royal ballet school

Our top tips for your Royal Ballet School audition

Applications for our full-time training and Mid, Senior and Advanced Associate programmes are now open, with auditions taking place from November to January for courses starting in September 2023. The School accepts applications for these programmes for a short period just once a year.

We are looking for dancers aged 10 to 18 with a passion for classical ballet, enthusiasm, musicality, and the potential for a future career in dance. All applications are welcome, and everyone who applies will have the opportunity to attend a preliminary audition. Admission to the School is based solely on potential in classical ballet, not personal circumstances or academic ability.

We know the process of applying and auditioning can feel new and strange to many, and we want all who audition with us to feel comfortable and at ease so they can perform at their best. We’ve asked Mark Annear, Head of Training and Access, to share his top five tips for dancers attending auditions, and his top five tips for parents or guardians:

Top tips for dancers

  1. Have a healthy and nutritious breakfast so you have lots of energy to dance, and don’t forget to bring a water bottle with you to stay hydrated throughout the day
  2. Wear the clothing you’re going to dance in underneath your regular clothes as there won’t be any changing facilities at the venue, and this will save you time!
  3. Wear the dance clothes you’re most comfortable in – as long as what you have meets our guidelines, you don’t need to buy any new clothes to wear! Our team are focused on you as a dancer and not what you are wearing, and we want you to feel as relaxed as possible
  4. Remember the number you are given for the audition class because the teacher and audition panel will use this number rather than your name
  5. Remember, the audition is designed to be an enjoyable and rewarding experience. Try to see it as a chance to experience something new, meet other dancers who love ballet as much as you do, and show our team what you can do. Everyone wants you to feel able to do your best – so relax and have fun!

Top tips for parents or guardians

  1. Photographs needed for the audition application can be taken at home on a phone – there is no need to use a professional photographer! Our team are looking at the dancer, not the quality of the photo, so you just need to ensure we can see the requested positions clearly
  2. Don’t leave it until the last minute to submit your application, just in case there are technical difficulties!
  3. Plan your route to the audition ahead of time to reduce stress on the day. Nothing is worse for nerves than not knowing where you are going or unexpected travel issues!
  4. Don’t arrive at the venue until your allotted time – due to the number of auditionees throughout the day, you won’t be allowed to come in before your audition time
  5. We know you’ll feel anxious, but try to see your child’s audition as a fun dance class, just like they are used to. Keep calm for them and help them to see it as an enjoyable and valuable experience, whatever the outcome.