Feature Article

Top 7 Behaviors of Successful Performing Artists

Written by VPA Co-Owner, Carrie Bohlmann

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What do all great performers have in common? Here are the top seven behaviors that the owners of Virtuoso Performing Arts agree are common to successful performing artists:

#7 They are creative. While it is important to do what your directors and choreographers ask of you, as a performing artist, sometimes it’s appropriate to add your own creative flair. Allowing your personality to shine through (when appropriate) is what differentiates you from the next talent that walks through the door.

#6 They persevere. They go with the flow and are able to make whatever is asked of them work, within reason. They value their self-esteem and learn to handle rejection in a healthy way.  Because they are able to continually pick themselves up and keep going, they are constantly gaining invaluable experience and practice.

#5 They maintain good relationships. Networking is key in this industry. Always treat people with kindness and professionalism; your wonderful reputation will precede you.

#4 They stay open-minded. Of course, having great teachers and taking great classes is important; but learning to be a student outside the classroom as well is key. You can learn from anyone you meet; and if you are lucky, you will gain a mentor along the way because you have demonstrated your openness to learning new things. In the same sort of way, it is important to say yes to most job opportunities that come your way, even if the choreography, script or music isn’t preferred. Taking more jobs means meeting more professionals in the industry (networking) and practicing the craft.

#3 They have chosen great teachers throughout their careers. The foundation from which we learn the technique of our craft is so important. Really great teachers are able to teach the technique but also inspire and motivate their students. The best teachers will lift their students up and cultivate confidence in them to move forward.

#2 They are disciplined. This means they value responsibility and practice it on a daily basis;  never keeping people waiting past deadlines or for a reply to an email; are always on time; rarely calling in sick; coming through time and time again. They have become known as “reliable”. Not only that, but they train in their their craft year-round to keep their skills sharp. This discipline leads to a great work ethic.

#1 They are passionate. In order to be successful, you must have passion. If you didn’t have passion, you wouldn’t care enough to be disciplined, open-minded, maintain good relationships, persevere or be creative. Passion is what reminds you why you love what you do.

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