FIVE TIPS TO APPLY FOR A DANCE FESTIVAL
With the arts slowly opening up post the pandemic lockdowns, several festivals have reimagined their presentation formats. Arts festivals have begun to explore the concept of commissioned art performances that do not remain confined to traditional presentations. Ideating and curating unique, themed, and intrinsic concepts and productions have become the new norm.
As festivals have now begun to accept applications for the coming year (2022-23), we at NeoNarthaki thought that we would list down some of the key aspects to keep in mind when developing your application – be it for a digital or an in-person presentation.
- Crisp and Concise Biography
The most common mistake artists make is writing a vast elongated CV or Biography that neither speaks for the performer’s artistry nor their creative process. Organizations are keen to understand you as an artist, as a performer, and the values you stand for and the inspiration behind your creative endeavours.
Write a very concise bio that lays out your important achievements and speaks about your personality and what your art stands for. Make sure to customise your biographies to the criterion specified by the specific organisation. A creative production festival would rather understand your choreographic history than your innumerable performance history.
- Performance Video
Organizers typically have to sift through hundreds of applications. Much like the digital platform, it is crucial to catch their attention in the first few minutes to consider the application. The performance video is a testament to your training and technique. It’s vital you choose videos in high-definition, short yet explorative, and a piece that covers significant elements of your art.
This part is non-negotiable. Please read through all major specifications of the festival. Understand what the festival stands for, its vision, and what they seek to do. Understanding the festival will go a long way in writing your application. Check the criteria and make sure you are eligible before you start applying. Mark the important dates, and if you feel you are unsure about something, do not hesitate to contact the organizers and double-check. No question is a wrong one.
- Statement of Purpose (SoP)
Most digital festivals today require you to write a statement of purpose that reflects the person you are and what you seek to do through the festival. Write down your thoughts on a rough draft and structure them before you begin to write your SoP. Do not use rare vocabulary or complex sentence formations. They want to understand the artist and not your language prowess. Make sure it is original because nobody can write your thoughts better than yourself.
- Concept Note
For commissioned art performances and festivals, Concept Note is a major part of the application process. The Concept Note lays down the foundation of your specific performance, its historical/social/cultural significance, and what the performance seeks to convey, providing a sneak peek into what you wish to present.
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