Every Bellydancer Should Know...10 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Joining A Dance Troupe

So you've been taking bellydance classes for a while and you're getting the itch to join a troupe eh? First I congratulate you on being able to articulate it. Life is short, don't make any more excuses. Go for what you want.

If being in a dance troupe is something you want to do admit it to yourself and most of all to a bellydance teacher whom you trust. Your teacher can only be as helpful to you as you are open with her/him. Tell them what your desires and intentions are so that they may help set you on the right path. You may qualify for a student troupe sooner than you think. And with some hard work, maybe a professional troupe in the future.
Too many times have I heard after the fact that so-and-so really wanted to be in my troupe and they were hoping to get an invitation. Which is a shame, I would have loved to have worked more closely with those people.

Being in a troupe is an excellent way to fast forward your dance education and experience as rehearsals, costume preparation and performances tend to be on a more formal schedule. As great as it is, it is NOT for everyone.

If you're thinking of joining a troupe do yourself a favor and ask yourself, at the very least, these 10 questions:
1.   Does this troupe and director value the same things I do in bellydance?
2.   How do I feel about not having complete control of rehearsal scheduling?
3.   Am I willing to miss a few family and friend events? 
      (Birthdays, nights out, happy hours, family dinner)
4.   Can I cope with the inevitable "hurry up and wait" nature that comes with rehearsals?
5.   Can I learn choreography on somebody else's learning curve?
6.   How will I deal with buying, making and wearing costumes that I'm not thrilled about?
7.   Am I comfortable with the dynamics of the troupe members?
8.   Am I willing to be friends with all troupe members, even if it means stepping out of 
my   comfort zone?
9.   Am I ready to take on the responsibility of representing the troupe, when at bellydance events and gigs?
10. Am I comfortable attending and performing at venues and events this troupe selects to perform at?

Troupe life is not all doom and gloom but it is important to remember that you give up control of many choices that otherwise would be solely up to you. All that is fine until your troupe director makes a choice you don't like. You need to be prepared to deal with that.

If you know what to expect and you find a troupe that is in alignment with what you want, you are about to embark on a most enriching experience. Do not settle for anything less!

Shimmy, Sizzle, Pop!

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