National Audition Tour Recap – Faculty Perspectives

When December festivities conclude, dancers across the country begin preparations for a busy month of auditions. At the same time, SAB faculty pack their bags and hit the road to host our annual National Audition Tour. For the first time since 2020, the National Audition Tour resumed this year with faculty visiting sixteen cities across the U.S. to audition dancers for the SAB Summer Course and New York Junior Session.

For decades, SAB faculty members have left New York City to recruit talented dancers for our summer programs. However, when the pandemic halted the in-person tour, schools were tasked with adapting to virtual auditions. Now, dancers and instructors alike are thrilled to return to an in-person experience. 

After traveling to cities like Seattle, Tampa, and Atlanta, SAB Professional Placement Manager Allen Peiffer shares his perspective: “Everyone is excited to be back in person for auditions,” he remarks. He explains that the National Audition tour is more than just an opportunity to get accepted to our summer programs, it’s “a chance to show students a sample of an SAB class – to work with the students, see who takes to our style, to be able to give corrections and see how they apply them instead of just looking at a screen.” Auditions let prospective students get a glimpse of typical classes – one of the many perks of gathering in person again.

Faculty member Meagan Mann noticed the same excitement across the country in cities like Los Angeles and Dallas. After three years away, her favorite part about being back on tour is the opportunity to work with so many different students from around the country. “We are all brought together by our shared passion for ballet,” she explains. “Working with them first hand, giving them corrections, and hopefully, a positive experience makes for a rewarding trip.”

This year’s tour also marked an important first for the School – auditions were led by Darla Hoover, Chair of Faculty, and Aesha Ash, Associate Chair of Faculty, for the first time since their appointments last summer.

As a faculty member and former SAB student, Aesha Ash is very familiar with the audition process. “It has been so nice to have an opportunity to greet students face-to-face now that the SAB auditions are back in-person,” she shares. “Seeing these young talented dancers, filled with nerves and excitement, brings back so many memories.”

Chair of Faculty, Darla Hoover, left her first National Audition Tour feeling inspired. “It was wonderful to see so many dancers aspiring to be here,” she shares. After the tour, she was equally inspired by returning to New York City and seeing students hard at work at the School. “As time passes, I look forward to following these students’ journeys – from auditions to Summer Course and through the years as they grow here.” 

Suki Schorer posed beneath this photo of herself as a dancer with the San Francisco Ballet!

Now safely back to work in our NYC studios, we’re left with an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for the opportunity to share valuable time with prospective students and give them a glimpse into student life at SAB.  Most of all, we can’t wait to welcome so many talented students from across the country to train with us this summer!

Summer Auditions sponsored by:

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