Dance Admission FAQs

For more details such as audition agenda, audition dates, etc., be sure to see the Meadows Dance Application, Admission and Audition page.

Auditions on campus or in regional cities

When should I register for my audition?

As soon as you can. There are a limited number of slots open for auditions. Remember that you must first submit your Meadows Dance Application in order to then register for an audition. Check the Meadows Dance Application, Admission and Audition webpage for deadlines for on-campus, and regional auditions.

I can’t make the audition date I signed up for after all. Can I sign up for a different date?

Maybe. It depends on whether any slots are left in the other auditions. Contact Meadows Admission to reschedule or switch your audition type to a recorded audition: / 214-768-3217. If there are no other openings, you can send in a recorded audition.

What should I wear?

Auditionees should wear dancewear that does not impede movement of the body and that is form-fitting so that the faculty adjudicators can see alignment and movement particularities. We suggest full-length, non-footed tights and form-fitting tops or leotards. No loose-fitting t-shirts, baggy pants, or shorts.

What kind of dance shoes should I wear?

You should bring both jazz shoes and ballet slippers. Auditionees will dance in bare feet for the modern portion of the audition. Pointe shoes are required only if they are needed for the solo.

Can I wear a facemask during the audition?


Zoom auditions: Do you have any advice on how to set up our devices for the Zoom audition?

Mounting your cellphone, tablet, or laptop to a tripod – or setting your device on a flat, steady surface – is best to avoid a shaky image. Most of our dance applicants set their laptop as a wide shot that covers most of the studio area, but before the audition starts make sure you can be easily seen in the image – head-to-toe – as you dance across the floor, and that your image of you isn’t tiny and hard to see on the screen.

If I want to pursue the Dance minor, do I still need to audition?

Yes. Those interested in the Dance minor register for the audition within their Meadows Dance Application.

Is there a difference in the audition and application process for the major and the minor?

No, the process is the same. Dance applicants must complete the Meadows Dance Application, and must audition.

The Solo

Do all applicants perform their solo?

No. All applicants should prepare a 90-120 second solo in their choice of ballet, modern, or jazz technique and must provide music either on a cellphone, computer, or USB drive. Solos are performed at the request of the faculty following the morning audition technique classes. Auditionees will be dismissed if they are not asked to perform their solo.

If the applicant is instead auditioning via recorded audition, the solo is required to be included in their audition video.

If my solo is ballet, must it be classical or can it be contemporary?

It can be either classical or contemporary, your choice. (Jazz solos and modern solos are also accepted.)

Could the solo be a ballet variation or can it be a combination of ballet, modern, and/or jazz?

Yes. However, typically students focus on one style with a clear point of view.

What if my solo is longer than 2 minutes?

The time length requirement for the solo is 90 to 120 seconds - a minute and a half at least, or up to but not exceeding two minutes. It’s okay for the music to fade out if the song is longer than two minutes. Get creative and choreograph a solo that meets the requirements. You’ve got this!

Recorded solo: Is it okay if I submit a video of a solo performance I did on stage last year, or would you prefer I record a new video of me performing at a studio?

New or recent is preferred, whether you are solo onstage, in a studio, in your back yard, at your school’s gymnasium, etc. If you still want to send in a video from a solo you recently performed, select the best 90-to-120 seconds of the solo and upload that excerpt via your Meadows Dance Application portal, “Media/portfolio” section. Videos are uploaded via the Meadows Dance Application online.

The Interview

This pertains to all types of auditions, live or recorded. If you are asked to perform your solo, that means the faculty wants to further consider you for possible admission to the program.

Do you have any tips for doing audition interviews?

First, relax and let them see who you are as a person and as an artist. The faculty want to know more about you, your perspectives on dance, what your goals are, etc. You may be asked a variety of questions, or may be asked to perform a technique or combination. In any case, take a breath, relax and enjoy the chat!

Recorded audition interview

If you have sent in a recorded audition, you may later receive an email from Meadows asking for an interview. It means the faculty want to further consider you for possible admission to the program. You might also not receive a request, and that’s fine. Students are admitted with and without a follow up interview from a recorded audition. Interviews can be either in person, or via Zoom. Location, date and time of the interview are at the discretion of the faculty.

The Application, Résumé and Headshot

Is the photo for the Meadows Dance Application required to be a headshot?

Good question! Headshot please, face forward. Medium or closeup is fine.

Should the résumé be my jobs and activities, or just dance experience?

Just dance experience. Typically, applicants provide info such as training, what technique(s) they’ve studied, dance studio or club and/or instructor they’ve trained with, and what years these activities took place. Many provide a list of performances and in which years; other dance experience; choreography experience; dance awards and honors.

Is there a word limit for the questions in the Meadows Dance Application?

Although there is no word limit, the faculty is not looking for an essay. One paragraph is fine, or two or three if you need it.

Can you explain the thing about submitting both your SMU application and your Meadows application & audition in the same semester please?

Sure! The Dance degree has a “dual admission” process, and it takes time to complete the process:

  1. Applicant applies to SMU and to Meadows using two separate applications – one for SMU, the other for Meadows.
  2. Applicant registers for their audition via the online Meadows Dance Application.
  3. After the audition, the applicant will hear from Meadows whether or not the applicant has been accepted into the Dance program. This notification will be via email, and is usually sent to the applicant about two weeks after the audition.
  4. Meadows informs the SMU Office of Undergraduate Admission of its Dance admission decision.
  5. After hearing from Meadows, SMU will then render its admission decision and will contact the applicant via email.

It tends to be easier on the applicants and their families if they can get their decisions from Meadows and from SMU in the same semester. The main caveat is if a student applies to SMU in the fall as, for example, Early Action, but waits till the spring to audition, they won’t get their Meadows admission decision until about two weeks after their audition in the spring, and their SMU decision will follow about two weeks after Meadows’ decision. For some applicants that’s fine, they’re in no hurry; but other applicants want to know their admission decisions sooner.

When will I hear if I am accepted to the Dance program or not?

  • If you audition either in person, you will receive your Meadows admission decision about two weeks after the audition. Note that your SMU admission decision will follow about two weeks after your Meadows Decision.
  • If you submit a recorded audition, you’ll receive your Meadows decision about three weeks after the submission deadline:
  • Applying Early Action or Early Decision I: November 15
  • Applying Regular Decision or Early Decision II: January 15

If I want to apply to SMU early, should I apply Early Action or Early Decision I?

For dancers, Early Action. Here’s why: Early Decision is a binding agreement to attend SMU if you are accepted to the university even if you are not also accepted to the Meadows Dance Division. For those who wish to apply by the November 1 “Early” deadline, we recommend that dance applicants select “Early Action” instead of “Early Decision.” By applying Early Action, dance applicants can keep their options open while expressing strong interest in SMU.

If I apply Regular Decision or Early Decision II, will that hurt my chances of being accepted to the Dance program?

Not at all! Know that Meadows considers all of the auditions, whether you audition in the fall or spring semester. We want you to apply and audition when you think you will be at your best. Regular and Early Decision II applications to SMU are due Jan. 15.

What if I am admitted to SMU but not to the Dance program?

That does sometimes happen, and is the main reason why we encourage early applicants to apply to SMU as Early Action and not Early Decision. If you are accepted to SMU but not to the Dance program, you and your family will need to decide whether you go to SMU and pursue a major other than Dance, or select a different university.

Okay, but what if I am admitted to Dance but not to SMU?

In order to attend SMU and pursue the BFA in Dance Performance degree, applicants must apply to and be admitted to both SMU and to Meadows School of the Arts Division of Dance. If you are admitted to Dance but not to SMU, you’ll need to select a different university.

If I don’t pass my audition, can I audition a second time?

Yes. You will need to submit a second Meadows Dance Application and schedule a second audition. Please know that we do not provide feedback on auditions.

How many dancers are usually accepted every year?

Over 300 dancers apply each year. Approximately 50 are accepted, and of that group, we are looking to form an incoming cohort of 20 to 24 dancers.

Any tips on increasing my chances of being admitted to SMU?

High grades, activity in your school, community, place of worship, etc. Keep in touch with your SMU admission counselor; attend some SMU or Meadows events (keep checking your email for event announcements and registrations) and show your active interest in SMU.

Tell Me More ...

Minor in Dance: Can Dance minors perform in the mainstage shows?

Casting in the mainstage shows are for Dance majors only. However, on occasion, some minors may be cast in the annual Student Choreography Showcase and/or Senior Dance Concert.

Visit Meadows in-person or virtually via Zoom: Ready to learn more about Meadows School of the Arts? Get your questions answered and see where you will study, research, rehearse, perform, and collaborate as a Meadows student! Register here; when you get to the page, you’ll see that you can register for SMU info sessions and tours, as well as for the Meadows School of the Arts info sessions and tours.

Wait! I have more questions.

Contact us! We’re always happy to talk about Meadows School of the Arts.  /  214-768-3217

The Meadows Office of Admission and Financial Aid is open Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm Central Time. If you get our voicemail, please do leave your phone number, name, and how we can help you.