Do you feel ill-equipped to advise students applying to performing arts programs because these applications require an audition?
High school applicants to performing arts programs have been on a steady rise. Some top BFA programs have reported an increase of 20% in a single year. Most performing arts degree programs within a liberal arts university require an audition for admission, as do the conservatories. Even at a liberal arts college, the audition typically counts for 80% in the program admission process. In other words, it's all about the audition, which is a subjective process.
The best grades, test scores and essays in the world won't amount to much if the auditors are not impressed with your students’ auditions. And I know you want your students to succeed in the college admission process.
This year, I launched College Audition Coach Online, an innovative, comprehensive online prep, serving as an online coach of sorts. College audition coaching has been my specialization for 13 years, longer than any other coach in the country. I have advised close to 1000 private students and spoken to countless numbers of families and educators over the years in workshops, master classes, public appearances and as a special contributor to the New York Times Arts Beat blog.
What I hear from families over and over is that their high school counseling offices are in the dark when it comes to this specialized kind of audition-based application. And I hear as much the same from counselors who are feeling completely clueless when it comes to advising students pursuing performing arts programs. I would like to empower the drama teachers and the counseling offices to better serve this growing constituency of aspiring thespians.
The focus of online prep is the audition itself. Included on my website are a series of high quality instructional videos with student performance examples where popular college reps participate in instruction. Also included are podcast interviews with the heads of well-known programs, a categorized database of colleges and universities, course documents and organizational tools for you and your students. With your login, you can see if students are meeting deadlines, requirements, and check their list of colleges to which they are applying to/auditioning for.
I invite you to try it. See if you like what if offers you, your students and families and theatre faculty. Hey, it’s free. What have you got to lose?
Mary Anna Dennard is the founder of CollegeAuditionCoach.com and author of the book, I GOT IN! The Ultimate College Audition Guide for Acting and Musical Theatre, featured on the front page of The New York Times Sunday Theatre Section.