Freelance choreographers are professionals who out -source their abilities to a host of organizations including, dance studios, amateur performing dance companies, for dance camps, judging, team and solo choreography, and a lot more.
Freelancers are the people that usually move in multiple dance circles, and have many acquaintances in the dance communities they work in. They may or may not own, and/or be attached to a studio.
They can move around without being overly restricted by a lot of internal constraints. A lot are not studio based, yet some do carry their own name or brand.
A good thing about freelancing is the independence and freedom to pick your own schedule and what you will teach. You also get to keep your creative rights in some instances. Although some teams prefer to have full ownership of the dance, so it is not sold again.
You can contract with local studios, but don’t have to hold any set loyalty if you don’t choose too. It’s the experience and the dance, that matters most.
Freelancers tend to have a larger audience and are more apt to have fresher material because of all their outside choreography work. A lot of freelancers have also been judges, and have had a chance to view new material that your studio and/or instructors may not have.
I judged for a short while and in that process I learned a lot. I will be honest “I really think it helped me grow as an individual and instructor”. Those weren’t my students on the floor, they were someone else’s. I admit it was refreshing to be able to unbiasedly look at these young individual’s and critic and praise them in the areas they needed. No pressure – just do what I know. At the same time, it was nice to see what others were presenting choreography wise.
It’s that rare team that really steps up and presents something unique and entertaining. That’s the challenge each studio, and each performer faces.
As a freelancer you have to stay current with dance, and practice your skills. It’s in doing this that you are able to help teams learn new routines and specialty movements. You should be able to teach your students to incorporate their thoughts and ideas when needed for a routine.
It’s important that each dance look different, have its own style, and visual attraction – so your audiences (or judges) will be entertained.
At the same time, your dancers need to feel the dance. They need to understand the emotional part of the dance.
SETTING YOUR OWN SCHEDULE
Being able to freelance, allows me to set my own schedule. I’m busy 24/7 some months – but have leaned to curb that down in other months so I don’t burn myself out. I like to be in many different settings learning and growing. From those learning settings, I am able to bring back new and challenging choreography to my own students; both team and solo.
I love it when someone comes on line and says a kind word or two about something I’ve done. I try to make sure I say something positive back.
With ballet, I always- always-always, evaluate my students. I want to know what skills they have acquired before we begin learning new choreography and/or skills. Young bodies have limits when it comes to training. Their feet and legs need to be ready. Emotionally they need to be able to follow directions without bursting into tears because they have to repeat certain sets. One of the hardest things to do is say no.
TIME IS MONEY
As a business owner you know that you don’t have time to train your teachers. They have to come to you already qualified. It’s your family welfare on the line, and your businesses reputation. But even your best teachers get stuck in a rut; so bringing in someone who has new and challenging choreography can really help boost your team performance, and your instructors confidence.
I’m not competing with them, I’m augmenting what they already do.
It’s at this point that you pick up the phone and call those freelance choreographers to help you put together choreography for upcoming events, team dances, camps, solos, etc.
This is what I do. Since I’m not tied to any studio, I can work with all the studios and independents – on my time. however, I do carry my own name and brand to distinguish myself separately from the others. That is important for me. I’m not competing with any studio, I’m simply augment what they already do.
While I do instruct a small ballet group – I choose to remain independent, and embrace the entire dance community.