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What To Look For When Choosing A Training Program

By Lisa Perez

A career in the performing arts requires talent. This may sound obvious, but talent is only one of the ingredients in the recipe for success on the stage.

An aspiring arts student must train, but how do you pick the right training studio and teachers? Training isn’t just about technique; it involves feedback, critiques, encouragement, support and most importantly trust.

Location: As a high school student, you have a busy life. Having a training facility that’s geographically convenient is key. You will spend a great deal of time at the studio after school and on the weekends. Remember—work life balance!

Staff: Look for a facility that has experienced faculty. Your voice, dance and acting teachers should have credentials and training. Be certain to get references and don’t be afraid to sit in on a class to observe.

Remember—you are paying them to train you and need to make sure they’re the right fit for you.

Curriculum: To have a career in musical theatre, being a triple threat is the goal. Pay attention to the curriculum. Do they pay equal attention to singing, dance and acting? You will need training in all three to keep up with the competition.

Reputation: A picture is worth a thousand words….or is it? When you walk into a training studio and see headshots with college names on the wall, what does it mean? It means their training produces talented performers, but a great training facility and staff not only train you to be a better performer, they help you become a better person. They should set a good example and treat their students with love and respect. Make certain to ask current students and even parents, about their experiences in the school. No one wants to work with a DIVA!

Studio Space: Is the space updated, modern and clean. You will most likely be spending more time in this space than you do at home while training for a career in performing arts. Is there a kitchen on site? Do they have a lounge area to relax during your down time? Many studios have areas with printers and computers for students to work on homework during their breaks. For the performer, it’s all about time management.

Show Me The Money: Make certain your arts studio is clear and concise when it comes to their billing policies. Do you know what you are being charged each month? Do they provide you regular statements and is it easy to make payments? The training process can be expensive, make sure it’s easy to keep track of the money you are spending.

The key take away….find a studio where you feel comfortable to be yourself and a place that will provide a curriculum that challenges you to grow. For serious performing arts students, your training studio will become your second home. Make sure you want to live there!

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