What to wear to a dance audition?

Are you auditioning for a dance college or a new dance company? Dance audition season is looming. Have you got your dance audition outfits planned? No need to panic…we chatted to Ballet Ireland’s Niamh O Flannagain about her favourite dance audition outfits and got some pointers for anyone planning a killer dance audition outfit.

Dance College Audition Outfits

Make sure they spot your potential in that dance audition!

  • Always enter a dance audition looking neat & tidy. You want to show that you are professional and disciplined. This means clean shoes, new tights, slick hair etc.
  • Always bring spares of everything! Disasters happen, be prepared!
  • No skirts, you want to show off your proportions and lines. It can look like you are trying to hide something under a skirt and they need to see your hips and glutes for alignment. Remember dance audition panels are not looking for a finished product, they are looking for potential, so don’t try and hide under anything.
  • I would advise a simple leotard; perhaps a camisole, to show off neck and arms. Try to wear a leotard with a flattering high cut leg line. Avoid black and go with a coloured leotard, nothing with a distracting pattern but wearing a colour helps the audition panel to spot and discuss you. Eg “the girl in the ‘blue’ Leotard is…”

Endless colour options…


  • Wear clean pink tights underneath the leotard and inside your ballet shoes. Even if you usually prefer wearing tights over your leotard and rolled up to your ankles, a college dance audition is not the place for a relaxed look.
  • Keep makeup light and natural. Make sure you feel good about yourself and look presentable but don’t go overboard with makeup and no fake tan.
  • Keep your hair neat and hairsprayed. I would suggest a high bun as I think it creates a nicer line and elongates the neck. You can add twists if you like for something different, or wear your hair in a French roll. However, don’t try out a French roll for the first time at an audition- they take some practice! Read Dance World’s post here on how to do the perfect ballet bun!
  • Don’t wear jewellery, in a dance audition it’s distracting, unprofessional, and can be dangerous.

Why I chose this dance college audition to look?

This dance audition outfit is simple. The classic leotard shows off the neck, collarbones, and arms, which play a huge part in expression and feeling in dancing. The back has a beautiful shape, highlighting the back & scapula, and the diamante detailing adds a little something extra, making you stand out for the right reasons. The high cut leg line will elongate your legs and the bold pop of royal blue will make you stand out to a dance college audition panel.



What to wear to a Company Dance Audition

  • For a dance company audition, you should aim to look older and professional. You don’t want to look like a student who wandered into the wrong dance audition. The panel wants to believe you are experienced, mature and will be able to handle the demands of company life. Try to wear your own style within reason but chose your company dance audition outfit carefully. There is a fine line between looking experienced and professional and messy.
  • Stick with pink tights here, these allow the dance audition panel to still see the muscle tone in your legs. Black tights can hide this. Personally, I like to wear my tights over my leotard, tights under makes me feel more like a student and that I’m back in school.
  • I would wear my hair a little more relaxed, still neat but not slicked back into a high bun. This is to look a little older and more experienced. I’ll generally go with relaxed twists into a French roll for a company dance audition.
  • Keep makeup light and pretty for dance auditions. If you want to wear jewellery, make sure to keep it minimal. With earrings, you can get away with very small drop earrings but otherwise, stick with studs.

Heavenly white choices…


  • Keep makeup light and pretty for dance auditions. If you want to wear jewellery, make sure to keep it minimal. With earrings, you can get away with very small drop earrings but otherwise, stick with studs.
  • Whether you wear a skirt or not will depend on the dance company. Often the audition panel wants to see your body so a skirt can hide you but sometimes a small skirt is fine and gives you a bit of personality. Stay away from long skirts. Judge it by what other candidates are wearing. If nobody else is wearing a skirt, don’t wear one for that particular dance audition. They may have a rule about it that you didn’t pick up on.
  • I also would suggest avoiding matching coloured leotards and skirts, it tends to look young and student like in dance auditions.
  • With coloured leotards, I would opt for a small neutral coloured skirt eg white, grey, nude or black skirt. If you are wearing a black or a white leotard then maybe add some colour with a skirt. Basically don’t go overboard with mixing colours and patterns, keep it simple and don’t stand out for the wrong reasons.
  • Don’t wear warm-ups in class. This isn’t a regular company class, it’s a dance company audition, you should be warm and prepared to start in a leotard and tights.

First Look – Timeless and Stylish dance audition outfit

Why I chose this dance audition look?

Although it might seem scary wearing a white leotard to a dance audition, it’s a great way to stand out. White is easy to spot amongst lots of colours and people rarely wear white leotards. It proves that you’re not trying to hide & will show confidence. This So Danca leotard has the most gorgeous cut & detailing on the bodice. It’s very elegant, the empire waist opens down diagonally and is really flattering. A lower back is also great because the audition panel can see your back and shoulder blades working. If pairing with a skirt, I would avoid white or black. I would add some colour or a pattern like the one pictured above.

Second Look – Mature and Striking dance audition outfit

Why I chose this dance audition look?

I love this audition outfit as it has a more contemporary/new-classical style feel to it but is still so elegant and classy. The interesting neckline, dramatic open back and the unique colour of this leotard will stand out to a dance audition panel. In this leotard I feel more covered on top so it’s nice to wear with just tights for a neoclassical look. You don’t feel as exposed! If I was to wear a skirt I would go with a plain white or black chiffon skirt as pictured above.



Dance Audition Tips

  • Spares! Always bring spares of everything, tights, leotards, hair grips, Pins, spray, etc.
  • The looks I have chosen and mentioned above are styles and colours that I found to work for me for dance auditions, however, every dancer is different. Find out what colours suit you and what styles of leotards are most flattering. Ask friends and teachers their honest opinions, take photos and videos to see how you look while dancing in them.
  • Try out your outfit in classes before the dance audition. Test if it’s comfortable to wear and dance in. Make sure you don’t have to be adjusting your outfit throughout the class. If you decide to wear your tights or hair a different way make sure you test that out before the audition too!
  • At the end of the day, it’s your dancing that will get you the job not what you’re wearing so make sure it is something you feel good in. Of course looking the part has a big impact but don’t stress out too much, be yourself, remember the college/company want you to be right for the school/job as much as you do. They are holding dance auditions hoping to find you and don’t forget that. It takes a bit of the pressure off when you realise that they want you to succeed just as much as you do.

The very best of luck to you all this dance audition season from the team in Dance World. Pop into our stores or shop online to grab yourself the perfect audition outfit. Many thanks to Niamh O Flannagain for her time and expertise.

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