Graduation Day to "42nd Street"
Key Ingredients to Turning Professional Quickly
Taylore Burke, Kahlia Davis and Georgina Moore wasted no time starting their professional careers. All three dancers—who graduate from AMDA’s Conservatory Program this week—have landed the 42nd Street national tour, which starts rehearsals in August. And while it’s absolutely essential for performers to hone their skills, here we see again that learning and understanding the business of the performing arts is equally as important when it comes to landing jobs. The three tappers took a few minutes from their busy schedules to share a little about their AMDA experience and how they transitioned from students to paid professional dancers.
It was by chance that Kahlia, an international student from Australia, even went to the 42nd Street audition. In the fourth semester of AMDA’s Conservatory Program, students may audition professionally while refining their audition techniques and continuing to train. It was during this time frame that fate struck. While in class, Taylore asked Kahlia, “Are you going on Monday?” To which Kahlia replied, “Going to what?” Taylore told Kahlia about the 42nd Street audition, thinking that she should take advantage of the opportunity because she hadn't yet been to a professional audition in New York. And with it being her first audition, Kahlia realized she had nothing to lose. “Two weeks later, after a series of callbacks, I had booked my first professional job in the US!" she said.
Preparing for Success
The dancers say they owe much to the AMDA faculty for providing the training, guidance and connections for success in such a competitive industry. “I feel as if I have all the tools that I need to be a successful, working professional,” said Burke. Taylore attributed her success to the faculty’s immense and invaluable knowledge of the industry, along with their continuous support. She thanked AMDA for giving her “extreme confidence and preparedness” while the audition process unfolded.
Moore, a Canadian international student, explained that the faculty was integral for her success as well. “They helped me understand the process of auditioning: what to wear; how to choose a headshot; how to build my book; and how to speak to casting directors and directors.” She believes that AMDA made her “a performer, not just a dancer,” and that it does the same thing in other programs; it “turns singers into dancers as well.” She continued, “We all leave as performers. Triple threats.”
The three recent graduates are excited to rehearse and perform together on their first professional production. “I think it will be really special going in on the first day [of rehearsal] already knowing you’ll see a familiar face,” said Moore. “We all come from the same foundation that AMDA gave us, so I think we’ll all work really well together.”