Audition FAQ




Q: What is the “body-choir”?

A: The body-choir will include 60 women, trained in their respective fields of dance and/or music – we are looking for artists with a spectrum of experience – from established teachers, dancers, performers to emerging artists at the beginning of their journey (minimum 8-10 years).  Body-choir artists are an essential part of the visual design of Svāhā. The role will include executing steps in repetition on tala, performing gestures in unison, reciting bols/konnakols, keeping talam and sharing the stage with the company in specific sections of the production of Svāhā.

Q: Where will Svāhā be performed?

A: Meridian Hall is the iconic theatre at Front Street East in Toronto. It is Canada’s largest soft-seater theatre.  It has gone through many name changes -- O’Keefe Centre, Hummingbird Centre for the Performing Arts, Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, and now Meridian Hall. It was once home to the Canadian Opera Company and the National Ballet of Canada. Over the years many renowned international dance companies have performed here, including Nrityagram (India), Alvin Ailey (USA), and the Kirov (USSR).  Svaha is the first time a Canadian dance company featuring Indian classical dancers is being presented on this stage. We need your help to strike your feet and sound your bells, making our presence as highly skilled dancers shout out from the stage.

Q: What is the time commitment?

A: The rehearsal and performance schedule is as follows:

*Attendance at each rehearsal is mandatory for all body-choir artists.

Q: Where will the rehearsals be located?

A: Most rehearsals will take place at Meridian Hall (formerly The Sony Centre), in downtown Toronto.

Q: What is the honorarium?

A: All successful applicants will receive an honorarium payment of a minimum of $250 for their involvement and commitment.

Q: How do I audition?

A: To audition for the body-choir, please complete our AUDITION FORM HERE

Q: What are the requirements for the question: “Tell us a bit about yourself?”

A: Tell us briefly (a few sentences) about your life and passions outside of dance or music. 

Q: What are the requirements for the question: “What is your background in Indian Classical Dance and/or music?”

A: To answer this question, tell us what forms of Classical Dance and/or Music that you practice and how long you have trained. Tell us about any and all training you have had and what teachers you have worked with, including your most recent training. List all performance experiences you have and include any other relevant experiences.

Q: Do I have to be a professional dancer to audition and, if not, what skill level is required?

A: You do not have to be a professional dancer to audition. Training of 8-10 years in your specific classical dance or music styles is required.

Q: What happens if I can’t attend all the necessary commitment dates? 

A: While we understand that extraneous circumstances may prevent an artist from attending a rehearsal (sickness, family emergencies, etc.), due to the intensive nature of this work, we ask that each selected participant commit to the complete rehearsal schedule as laid out here.

Q: What will the May 2-3, 2020 weekend intensive consist of?

A: This is a professional development opportunity as well as a chance for the company to meet you as a performer. After this weekend selected candidates will be invited to join the Svāhā production.

Q: What do I need to include in my audition video(s)?

A: Your audition video(s) must include:

Dancers--submit a three-minute example of your dancing and up to three-minute example of recitation of bols/konnakol.  

Musicians--submit a three-minute example of rhythmic (tala) recitation. 

You may choose to record (or edit), and submit a single video which includes all of the above, or submit up to two separate videos.

Q: How do I record my video(s)?

A: Your audition video (or videos), can be shot relatively simply on any modern smartphone. You can simply prop the phone on a piece of furniture, being sure that your entire body is in the frame, and that you are well lit, and visible. 

If you are performing a recitation for your audition video, please do so in a standing position.

Q: What should I wear in the audition video?

A: Any comfortable practice clothes, for example, sari, pants and top, or other.

Q: What music should I use in the audition video?
A: Use the traditional music for the pieces you are dancing. Professional recording is not necessary.

Q: What are the age restrictions for the audition?

A: We are creating an inter-generational body-choir, please do not feel restricted by age. That said, the minimum age is 16 years and above. Anyone under 18 years of age must have parental permission and commit to rehearsals that may take place during school hours. There is no upper age limit, although dancers will be required to keep tala and move in unison with other dancers. 

Q: What if I have more questions?

A: You can direct any additional questions to kristyn (at)