Some of you are going to be attending our summer dance intensive, and many of you will be attending intensives elsewhere. Here is our best advice on how to prepare and make the most of your intensive experience.
We know it may sound counterintuitive, but don’t go for a run, take 20 dance classes, and do 40 sets of crunches the day before you start your intensive! Continue to take class regularly in the weeks leading up to your intensive, but take a couple of days off right before you start. Your body needs the rest- you’ll work plenty hard once you’re there!
You may be aching to be placed in the most advanced level for your intensive, but don’t be upset if your placement falls short. Summer is a great time to improve, but it is impossible to get better by struggling in a class that is so far above your head you couldn’t reach it with your best battement. You want to be challenged but not frustrated. Always talk to your intensive director if you feel that you are placed in a class that is too difficult for you.
You are going to be sweating it out all day, and in order to prevent cramps, injury, and dehydration, you have to drink up! Start your day with water and be sure to pack a refillable bottle in your dance bag.
Intensives introduce you to a whole host of new movement ideas, steps, and choreography, and you don’t want to forget it all before the end of summer! Carry a small notebook with you in your dance bag to record important things you learn. Write in it daily at lunch or the end of the day while combinations are still fresh!
Find out in advance if your intensive has a dress code and choose your outfits accordingly. You may be able to wear different attire for ballet versus other classes, so make sure to at least pack jazz pants. You may also want to bring a cover-up in case you get cold during breaks or lunch. Make sure you bring all of your shoes with you in your dance bag.
At an intensive, you will be more active then you usually are in your daily life. Make sure you compensate for the extra activity by adding calories to your lunch. This will help you to make up for what you lost in the morning and help you power through your afternoon classes. Make sure all of your meals consist of a protein, a carbohydrate, and plenty of fruits and vegetables. Make sure to also pack snacks for a quick bite between classes.
Summer intensives are a great way to meet other dancers and perhaps make new friends! Bring a notebook to write down contact information, as cell phones will not be allowed in most dance classes.