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Choreographer

Alternative titles for this job include

Choreographers design sequences of steps and movements, usually accompanied by music, for dancers and other artists to perform.

Average salary (a year)

Variable

Typical hours (a week)

28 to 30 variable

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays managing your own hours

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a choreographer

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly

University

You'll need a high level of dance training and experience. You could do a foundation degree, degree or postgraduate award to develop your skills. Relevant subjects include:

  • professional dance
  • musical theatre
  • dance and choreography

These are offered by dance schools and universities.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study
  • to pass an audition

More Information

Work

You could start out as a professional dancer and combine this with an assistant choreographer role, especially in a smaller company.

With further training and experience you could work your way up to become a choreographer.

Volunteering

You may find it useful to get work experience with an established choreographer.

You could also develop your skills by volunteering to choreograph amateur dance club performances.

Direct Application

You may be able to apply for work if you're an experienced professional dancer or dance teacher.

More Information

Career tips

When you're starting out it's good to have a mentor, perhaps someone who's work you admire, to guide you and give you constructive advice.

You can find professional choreographers in the UK Directory of Choreographers.

Observing as many different types of dance to increase your knowledge of dance styles is also useful.

Professional and industry bodies

You can join One Dance UK for professional recognition, training opportunities and to make industry contacts.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a choreographer from One Dance UK.

You can get more information on working in creative careers from Discover Creative Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of the fine arts
  • persistence and determination
  • the ability to come up with new ways of doing things
  • leadership skills
  • knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • physical skills like movement, coordination, dexterity and grace
  • ambition and a desire to succeed
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

You could:

  • come up with creative ideas and turn them into routines
  • fit movements to music
  • work with producers, costume designers and musical directors
  • choose music, costume styles and props 
  • audition and rehearse dancers
  • record dance steps using a notation system
  • if you're self employed, market yourself and deal with your own tax and accounts
  • if you run your own dance company, hire staff and apply for funding

Working environment

You could work in a creative studio, in a theatre, at a film studio or at a TV studio.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding, you'll travel often and you may spend nights away from home.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

You're likely to work freelance on a fixed-term contract. You may be able to find full-time permanent opportunities with dance companies.

You could set up your own dance school, teach dance or move into community arts or dance therapy work with additional training and qualifications.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a choreographer right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Dance, Performance & Choreography

  • Provider: HAVANT AND SOUTH DOWNS COLLEGE
  • Start date: 05 September 2022
  • Location: Waterlooville

Street Dance - Foundations & Choreography

  • Provider: Morley College
  • Start date: 19 April 2022
  • Location: London

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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