Winning 1st 3 prizes for solo(s)/group(s) in Indian Dance Competitions for over a decade in our genre of specialization for non-voting Indian Dance Competitions sounds like a big thing. It actually isn’t if you follow curriculum and keep it fun. For us, it has been a norm for Bharatanatyam, Indian Folk Dances & Bollywood/Some Tollywood and from 2013-Fusion!
HOW ? We love to share how we have been winning from over a decade in all the “stage dance competitions” and how our elites have come this far with such good paid commitments.
So, here’s our HOW TO Win Indian Dance Competitions for Dummies…! Our Fool Proof guidelines and tips for those interested.
One of main attributes in stage competitions/for all genres are : Techniques. Techniques also means right amount of expressions required at certain techniques or mood used in the dance, coordination if group, comfort level of dancers with respect to dance, stage presence and personality, choreography, costumes, makeup and drama aspect. To do it right, you have to feel it and go through it which at Grace And Grooves is a norm! Because our owner herself comes from that background of competitions from over 2 decades! Read About Ms. Hetal Nagaraj.
To begin with, what are the types of dances ?
Be it Bharatanatyam, Indian folk dances or Bollywood/Movie inspired dances; usually these dances are non-commercial dances. For bollywood or tollywood dance industry genre, there is level of dance and name of dance as well. As we all know that bollywood dances emerge from various forms or styles or certain drama attributes and thus will always have name.
However, there are certain category of dances within bollywood that do not have name because they do no follow a form or style and are purely for entertainment or let’s just say – NO RULES thus, these dances makes them commercial dances and usually gets disqualified in first round itself if you do it in-spite of rules given. Open category of competitions usually accepts these for example – most reality show competitions are based on this! That dance industry/world is entirely different than education studio. Education world competitions are to encourage the dancer to follow the rules, get finer in it and excel with feedbacks and let’s just say prepare them for higher grounds of possibilities within the form or with fusions later, if trained. Then, break the rules-it is completely dancers wish and instructor’s wish! None-the-less, our students have won these open category dance competitions with their actual dance forms itself or with fusion depending on what is allowed. Usually it will depend on judges, number of rounds in competitions and students training level in that genre. Everything goes in there…
For Bharatanatyam/Classical Dances & indian folk dances, the category is always non-commercial and standard as it is dance form. Even for entertainment, creativity is out of this world if used within the form. Most classical dances are actual dance formats/margams itself and then there are dance dramas. Not to confuse with dance musicals!
There is this entire category of exclusive Indian Folk Dances that is entirely different than the dances that are into Community stage dances/cultural dances/regional dances/bollywood inspired folk dances/ethnic dances/creative folk dances. Why ? Because of rubrics of judging and rules that go with it is entirely different for both these categories. You cannot possibly compare Folk Dances rubrics to Bollywood or with Bharatanatyam. With Bollywood having different types of techniques and some folk dances do not even have expressions as their main factor. Likewise, Bharatanatyam nritta if done will lack several attributes of nritya or natyam itself. So rubrics are often kept in % by the genre or type of entries.
Depending on competitions, they categorize fusion dances or they put them in open category. Concept of fusion dances is very simple! Some go by dance done on other music to be considered as fusion because their argument is that if dance is not danced on its actual/real music then it is not that dance. That is true but if u do not consider music at all and see the dance without music; what will you name it? That raises lot of fundamental questions. So these occurrences have been very rare in over 10 years of history that we have participated. We had 2 such competitions that we came across in entire history of 10+ years where they had that kind of rule! We got 1st place in both anyway. The only argument to this was you cannot name that dance as fusion unless 2 or more dance form or styles are used. Rest are very clear about categories & thus you’ll know it well.
Then comes the judges. First experience is always a question for you because these competitions do not tell you who the judges are and some do not specify the rubrics either but when you test waters, you’ll know! We had tested some waters — we decided not to waste time there as they were bias to one team based on their friendly relations! Then be it that way, you should call only them!
Some competitions are very transparent to names of judges and their experiences and that is fun! Last but not the least, whether or not there it is any voting. If voting then how many % is counted towards total judging points. What age group we are competing in one category/genre is also important factor for stage like dances!!
Then comes, prize money if there is one or something of that sort. Then it is motivating for students who are doing competitions regularly or something of that equivalent value. Nobody wants a 10$ trophy after spending money on hours of practices, competition fees, costumes and that just adds to a collection without a meaning!
For us at Grace And Grooves, it has been other way round. Our students have earned more, earned bigger opportunties than what they put money in! It is just boring for our students who have competed from over 10 years now to go for $10 trophies without the meaning to it. They rather spend money 50 to 60$ and do shows with us where they know they are going to get recognition, feathers to wear that they can own as skill-set, showcase as their own, perks, discounts and many more fun things to take home. A beautiful memory to take home. Budget is very important factor too!
Alas, comes the winning part after all that! Most difficult & unpredictable of all!
Just like that you do not get the wins in 1st 3 places & $$$ prizes. Here are some standard points that we have come across for rubrics in judgement & we would absolutely love to share with you:
1. Expressions 40% depending on genre. Some genres strongly requires that this element isn’t the part of dance because of restrictions on costumes, mask, type of song/pure technique competitions, or certain type of dramas. so % is then distributed.
2. Techniques 50% & % is distributed
3. Comfort level of dance & body movements-rest % divided, solo or group and as per difficulty level.
4. Coordination to music-rest % divided, if solo or group.
6. Costumes-rest % divided
7. Makeup / Dramatic effects of dance : % is divided by genre.
7. Props & usages
8. Choreography and Innovation in dance form without losing genre category—-some competitions have this highest! some have these 2 seperate.
10. Culture aspect depending on dance (if required depending on competitions since we have been to some of most difficult & strict competitions too!!!)
Sounds easy ? See you there..!!!!
Congrats to all our elites Nirja Setty, Samarth Setty, Setty Siblings, Ashna Pethe, Hetal Nagaraj, and lot of our graduates who have won them through a decade as they grew with us by balancing not only personal life but studies too.
Check out their real dances & results as they have been doing it beautifully and gracefully like cute little swans! Click Here.
Read about these budding stars : Here.
See their dance trainings at : https://www.graceandgrooves.com/our-graduates
Our Performing Teams too have won several such auditions/competitions or are called for special paid appearances : https://www.graceandgrooves.com/our-performing-team
Do not forget to sign up or subscribe our Youtube Channel Playlists. You will find lot of videos of our competition students, recreational dances, party dances, margam dances for classical dances, audition videos, our program videos, media releases & videos of different age groups starting from 3.5 to 5 years onwards to Adults 50+, and many more!!! Do not miss the Teenagers tribute of fun dances they do.
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