Don't trip – top 10 steps for starting a dance company

Published on 11 May 2020 at 12:00


For a dancer, coming towards the end of your formal education can feel daunting and maybe somewhat of a step into the dark. Where some may choose to dart straight for centre stage, others may prefer a more behind the scenes moment, finding that the limelight isn't for them anymore but not necessarily wanting to stop creating either. If you are currently finding yourself in a moment of doubt, do not fret. OOS is here to give you a glimpse into what lies out there in our well-trodden industry that can feel cluttered and confusing at the start.

All companies must start somewhere after all Rambert Dance Company didn't happen overnight. For someone wanting to start something like a company, a helping hand doesn't hurt. Luckily for you, Falmouth University graduate and Orka dance company founder Georgina Jarrett has outlined her top ten tips for forming a company for the first time:


  1. Choose the right dancers; this can make or break your company.
  2. Have a willingness to compromise, particularly when it comes to individual styles.
  3. Always keep ideas flowing; this includes outside of rehearsal time too.
  4. See social media as a critical tool for the company's progression.
  5. Quickly formulate a schedule in rehearsal time and stick to it.
  6. A successful company requires 100% effort, all of the time.
  7. Assign job roles within the group to keep it running smoothly, a treasurer for example.
  8. Know what you are and where that fits in the current market; how are you different?
  9. Promotion is vital – you need to create a positive engagement for future audiences.
  10. Lastly, pick the right name – it needs to represent what you stand for clearly.

If you are gearing up to add 'founder' to your Instagram bio, then at least take some of the tips from Jarrett to give yourself a solid foundation for building your company upon. Having just dropped the final curtains on her Dance and Choreography degree, Jarrett managed to execute the formation of a company which strongly argues that university dance companies are equally as skilled as their conservatoire competitors. 


The recent graduate emulates the fact that you don't have to go to a conservatoire to find people who share the same aims and values as you, which can then evolve into a successful company. 


By Niamh Rooney


Video and images courtesy of Georgina Jarrett