PHS Dance Company Audition Information



Information Session

Tuesday, February 22nd at 6:00pm 

Zoom Recording and Presentation

Application & Athletic Clearance Due

Friday, March 25th by 4:00pm NO EXCEPTIONS!

Dance Company Auditions

Monday, April 11th 4-6pm- Workshops

Tuesday, April 12th 4-6pm- Open Practice (Optional)

Wednesday, April 13th- NONE

Thursday, April 14th 4-7pm- Audition

Results Sent via Email

Sunday, April 17th 10:00am

Placement Exams for Dance 2 and Dance 3

Dates TBD, sign up to receive more information at

Important Links

Audition Application

Athletic Clearance Website 


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What is the purpose of the PHS Dance Company?

The purpose of the PHS Dance Company is to demonstrate dance as a positive vehicle for individual growth and expression, to represent our campus and community in a variety of performance environments, to promote school spirit, and to serve as a platform for college and career readiness.

What is the mission of the PHS Dance Company?

The mission of the PHS Dance Company is in line with the mission of Portola High School: to guide learners towards excellence and citizenship in a safe, engaging, and inspiring learning environment. Specifically, the Company will highlight the art of dance as a tool for creating a meaningful educational experience. Students may have personal goals of high academic achievement, improving dance ability, learning effective time management, developing strong communication skills, implementing healthy fitness and nutritional practices, building strong core values, and forming lifelong relationships.

When does the Dance Company practice & what are the practices like?

Students in the Dance Company must be enrolled in the Dance Company course, which acts as a year-long sport commitment. Students in Dance Company will be unable to participate in any additional PHS athletic teams during their enrollment in the class. Dance Company requires minimal after-school commitment, however extra rehearsals will be scheduled as needed based on the nature of upcoming performances or commitments. Calendars and schedules will be provided in advance and dancers will be expected to attend all events and rehearsals. Students are required to perform in the Winter and Spring Dance Concerts, Pep Rallies, Community Events, and the Student Choreography Showcase.

When are the auditions for the Dance Company?

Auditions for the Portola High School Dance Company will take place on Thursday, April 14th from 4:00-7:00pm. Workshops will take place on Monday, April 11th, with an optional open practice on Tuesday, April 12th. All workshops, open practices, and auditions are closed to the public.  

Do I have to turn anything in prior to auditioning?

All applicants must turn in a completed PHS Dance Company Application and have athletic clearance by Friday, March 25th at 4:00pm to be eligible to audition. ABSOLUTELY NO EXCEPTIONS. Late applications/confirmed clearance will result in not being eligible to audition for the 2022/2023 team. Current 8th grade students (incoming 9th graders) do not need to complete the online athletic clearance until otherwise notified of their selection for the Dance Company. A completed application includes:

  • PHS Dance Company Application (turn in to Mrs. Gardner)
  • Academic Clearance
    • 2.0 GPA or higher (will be verified by Mrs. Gardner)
  • Athletic Clearance (current PHS students ONLY)  
    • Athletic Clearance includes Student Information forms, Medical History, Parent/Guardian Info, Physical Exam completed by a Healthcare Provider, and Signatures. After completing all components of the athletic clearance, you must print the final confirmation page and turn it in to to officially be cleared.

Can I audition without a completed application?

No. Once applications are collected, only those students who are cleared physically and academically by the deadline of Friday, March 25th at 4:00pm will be allowed to audition. Emails will be sent out to confirm an applicant’s clearance to participate in the audition process.

Who will be scoring me in the audition?

A panel of outside judges will be evaluating each applicant in a live audition setting. Judges are hired based on their level of dance education and experience. More information about the judges will become available on Instagram as we get closer to the audition.

What will I have to do in the audition?

The audition will consist of two parts:

  • Jazz Funk Combination taught by an outside professional choreographer, learned in a workshop prior to the audition day. Jazz funk is a hybrid style of jazz and hip-hop. Jazz shoes and/or sneakers are encouraged.
  • Contemporary Combination taught by an outside professional choreographer, learned in a workshop prior to the audition day. Contemporary is a style influenced by modern, ballet, and improvisation techniques. Ballet technique is specifically observed through the contemporary combination. Socks, bare feet, ballet shoes, or lyrical paws are encouraged.  

What is the audition week schedule?

  • Monday, April 11th– Workshops 4:00-6:00pm
  • Tuesday, April 12th– Open Practice 4:00-6:00pm (optional)
  • Thursday, April 14th– Auditions 4:00pm-7:00pm (time frame is an estimate. All dancers will be expected to stay for the entire audition)
  • Sunday, April 17th 10:00am- Results sent via email

How will I be scored for the two combinations?

Judges will be scoring each combination on the following scale:
5 – Elite, 4 – Advanced, 3 – Intermediate, 2 – Beginning, 1 – Below Beginning

A dancer who earns an elite score of 5...

  • Demonstrates a strong understanding of his/her ideal spinal alignment and its potential for movement in a variety of genres
  • Demonstrates movement with high levels of clarity, physical strength, flexibility, coordination, balance, stamina, and control
  • Demonstrates a strong sense of musicality and rhythm in his/her performance with attention to transitions and the body’s three dimensional nature
  • Demonstrates confidence, personal expression, and a willingness to take risks

Judges will be applying this scale to the following categories for each combination:

  • Technique – ability to apply musicality and style to movement with clarity, ease, and accuracy
  • Musicality – rhythm, coordination, dynamics, levels
  • Knowledge/Memory – knowledge of material and ability to recall movement sequences with seamless transitions
  • Overall Appeal – projection, style, individuality, focus, expression

Total Points Possible for Jazz Funk Routine – 20 points (weighted 50% of total score)
Total Points Possible for Contemporary Routine - 20 points (weighted 50% of total score)

So, my scores for the ballet barre, the contemporary combo, and the jazz funk combo are weighted?

Yes. Part of the scoring process will be to manually tally each judge’s individual scores and then input the information into an excel spreadsheet that is already formulated to weight each combination as 50%. The average of the judges will be calculated so that each applicant has a final audition score between 0-100 points.

What if there is a tie?

If there is a tie on the total score, the judges will refer to the highest technical scores for the combinations and the ballet barre.

How many dancers are the judges going to invite to the Dance Company?

The judges will invite the top scoring candidates to join the Dance Company. The judges will determine the number of dancers invited to join the Dance Company.

Where and when will the results be posted?

Individual results will be emailed by Sunday, April 17th at 10:00am.

Can I see my scores from the audition?

Students are encouraged to schedule an appointment with the Director to discuss his/her results and strategize a performance improvement plan for future auditions. The Director may show you your scores in an effort to help you maximize your training.

If I don’t make the Dance Company at this time, but I still want be in the dance program next year, what do I do?

The best resource for answering questions regarding registration and scheduling is a counselor. Any students who do not qualify for the Company level may fall into one of the following categories, and here is what we advise for enrollment:

  • Currently enrolled in a PHS Dance course
    • Enroll in the next class in the pathway (i.e. Dance 1 → Dance 2)
    • Attend a placement exam to be considered for skipping a level
  • Not enrolled in a PHS Dance courseEnroll in Dance 1 (no audition or placement required)
    • Attend a placement exam to be considered for Dance 2 or 3


What is the best way to stay connected with updates and information regarding the dance program?

Please follow @portolahsdance on Instagram and Facebook. Mrs.Gardner can also be reached via email at