What is the purpose of a dance rehearsal?

Dance rehearsals are not a time for learning the steps or choreographing new pieces. Rehearsals are a time for perfecting the performance.

Apart from the obvious logistical considerations such as checking the timing of the performance, the stage cues, the costume functions and the practical arrangements for physically making the performance happen, one of the main purposes of a dance rehearsal is for the dancers to practice and develop their interpretive skills.

During rehearsals dancers fine tune the timing of their movements with each other and work with the musicality of the piece. The artistic director works to give the dancers emphasis and projection so that the piece is ready for an audience.

The audience needs to see that the dancers are interpreting their moves and performing them with confidence and expression, telling the story through their performance and conveying choreographic intention so that the piece does not become just a series of moves. The dancers learn how to use their expressive skills whilst adding in their own style to compliment the style of the performance piece.