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Submit Your Work to the 2017 NHYDF

The NHYDF is currently accepting works for the 2017 festival.  The 2017 Festival will take place on Sunday February 19th at the Stockbridge Theatre in Derry, NH.  Dance studios, secondary educational institutions, youth ensembles and performing arts programs are encouraged to submit work for consideration.  Though the festival may consider student choreographed works, works by professional choreographers and teachers are preferred.  A separate informal performance session will be held for a limited number of soloists.  Soloists should be seriously considering a career in the performing arts and looking for adjudication prior to college or professional auditions.

Deadline to submit: December 31, 2016

Performance Dates:

Sunday February 19, 2017
Stockbridge Theater
44 North Main St. Derry, NH 03038

Submission Form
  • Please review our guidelines prior to submitting work.
  • Please fill out a separate form for each work you would like to submit.
  • Complete the form fully each time!
  • There is a flat $100 participation fee for each organization, school, group or studio that is accepted to participate.  For every dance accepted from an organization, there is a $30 adjudication fee.  For each soloist, there is a $50 adjudication fee. Fees are nonrefundable and due by January 16, 2017.

We’re sorry, submissions are currently closed for the 2017 NHYDF.  Please check back for 2018 NHYDF.


Please review our guidelines fully before submitting your work.  For questions that cannot be answered in the guidelines below, please email nhydf@nhperformingarts.org

Who can submit works?

Any New Hampshire based dance studio, school, secondary institution, performing arts organization, youth ensemble or other organization with a dance program may submit work.  We prefer professional teachers and choreographers, but will consider a small amount of student choreography based on artistic merit.  Student choreographed works must be submitted by an instructor or program director.

While the NHYDF focuses on New Hampshire’s youth, we welcome applications from out of state organizations.  Please note that out-of-state applications will be considered only if there are performance times available after reviewing in-state applications.

What type of dance can I submit, and are there time limits?

All genres of dance will be considered for group dances including ballet, pointe, modern, jazz, tap, contemporary, hip hop/funk, musical theater, folk/ethnic, and works incorporating more than one style.  Solos must showcase technical ability in one of the following areas: ballet, pointe, modern, contemporary, and/or jazz.

Lip Syncing is not permitted for any performances.

Group Dances are limited to 8 minutes maximum, including any set up or take down of props or set pieces used in the piece.

Solos are limited to 1:30-2:00 minutes maximum.

How many dances can I submit?

You can submit as many dances as you would like for consideration.  Each dance requires a new form to be submitted.  Once the submission deadline has closed, the NHYDF team will notify you of which dances have been selected. Unfortunately, we may not be able to accept all dances submitted at this time because of limited performance time available.  We would like to give all interested parties an opportunity to perform work, and will accept as many dances as we can.  Each dance that is accepted will have a separate performance fee.

Can I submit a duet and/or trio?

Preference is given to dances that include 4 or more performers.  However, a limited number of duets and trios may be considered.

Can I submit a solo?

The NHYDF only accepts soloists who are seriously considering a career in the performing arts.  Teachers must submit on the student’s behalf.  Solos may be a maximum of 1:30 to 2:00 in length and must showcase technical ability in any of the following styles of dance: ballet, pointe, modern, contemporary, jazz.  At this time we are not accepting tap or hip hop solos.  Accepted solos are performed at an informal session in a dance studio and receive full adjudication.

What does it cost to be part of the NHYDF?

Each organization will be charged a flat $100 participation fee.  In addition, for each group dance that is accepted there is a $30 fee.  For every soloist that is accepted there is a $50 fee.  Organizations only submitting soloists will be charged $50 for the participation fee and $50 per soloist.  Fees must be paid by January 16, 2017.  All fees are nonrefundable.  Balances must be paid in full by February 13, 2017 in order for us to allow performers to participate.

Any cancellations of entries will result in a loss of all deposits and entry fees for the event.  No entries will be processed without full payment. Only Visa, Master Card, Studio checks, money orders or cashier checks will be accepted. Individual personal checks will not be honored. All returned checks are subject to a $35 service fee. Payment of entries sent after the deadline date must be in the form of a Cashier’s Check or Money Order. NHYDF reserves the right to move the festival date and or location due to unforeseen circumstances. NHYDF also reserves the right to cancel any event that does not meet the minimal number of acceptable entries. In the event this should occur, all entry fees will be refunded. There will be NO refunds on entries after the minimum numbers of entries have been received and adjudication times have been confirmed.

How many times will my piece be performed? Will I have the chance to be re-adjudicated?

All selected dances will perform once each during the performance time slot set by NHYDF.  Adjudication will take place at that time.  We apologize that we cannot change the time that you are scheduled for once it is scheduled.

Any performance will only be re-adjudicated if it experiences a technical error on behalf of NHYDF.

A tentative schedule with the performance time of each act will be emailed to participants, and available online at www.nhperformingarts.org/festival one week prior to the performance.

If the festival is running ahead of schedule, dancers are expected to perform in order of the program and / or when called upon backstage.

Do my dancers get awards?

The NHYDF is a noncompetitive event, and therefore does not hand out awards.  Each dance does receive a scoresheet from adjudicators with individual scores and feedback on several areas including choreography, costuming and more. The NHYDF aims to provide valuable feedback to participants and not an award system.  We believe in dance as an art form, and therefore do not judge dances against each other, but rather create an environment where dancers, audiences and choreographers can learn, engage and grow.

What is Adjudication and who are the adjudicators?

Adjudication is the process of evaluating a dance independently on its own merit.  In some cases, there may be a “winner”.  The NHYDF does not believe in comparing works to each other, but rather in providing feedback to each individual dance.  The adjudication of works presented at the NHYDF is designed to be a learning and educational experience, de-emphasizing competition. Feedback by the adjudicators are a valued part of NHYDF and will be conducted in an open and supportive forum.

The NHYDF is set up so that after each performance session, participants will be able to attend a brief and open feedback session.  These sessions allow participants to listen to adjudicators speak about each piece.  After the feedback session, participants will receive written feedback from the adjudicators to take home and review with performers.

Soloists will receive written adjudication in addition to an individual feedback session immediately following his/her performance.

Each year the adjudicators may change, and consist of leaders and professionals in the dance industry.  The 2017 adjudicators will be announced in February 2017.


Please note: NHYDF participants (faculty, performers, staff, etc) shall not attempt to engage adjudicators in any conversation pertaining to NHYDF participants, choreography or attending programs/schools. Questions concerning the adjudication process must be directed to the NHYDF staff.

Am I allowed to bring audience members, and where do audiences buy tickets to watch?

Admission to the NHYDF is free and the general public is welcome!

The house will open 30 minutes prior to the first performance time.  Performers are allowed and encouraged to sit in the audience before and/or after their performances.

The use of ANY electronic devices for Photography & Videography is STRICTLY PROHIBITED during any performance. Failure to comply with this rule may result in disqualification and loss of all deposits and fees paid to NHYDF. It is the responsibility of the studio owner, teacher, choreographer and/or program director to inform their students, parents and audiences of the NO Photo/Video rule.

No food, drinks or smoking is allowed in the performance area or inside the contracted venue. All persons on premise of the venue are also subject to rules and compliance of State and Federal laws pertaining to the use and safety of the venue.  All participating teachers, dancers and spectators are expected to display good sportsmanship. Failure to comply could result in immediate removal and loss of privileges to participate with NHYDF and or affiliates.

Will there be space to warm up and change before performing?

The Stockbridge Theater offers one male and one female dressing room in addition to a green room, general holding spaces and the dance studio.  We ask that all dancers enter the dressing rooms for changing and preparations, and that the hallways and common holding spaces are left free for dancers to warm up and wait for their turn on stage.

Participants will be allowed to warm up prior to the scheduled performance in the designated areas.  The main stage and dance studio may be used for warm up only if not in use for adjudication. No staging or running dances is allowed at that time.

Do I need to bring my music with me or submit it electronically?

Once your pieces have been accepted, the NHYDF team will notify you and request your music via mp3 format.  Participants should also bring back-ups in the event of a malfunction of the original music submitted.

Is there an age or level minimum/maximum?

While NHYDF focuses on youth performers (under 18), it is open to all ages as long as participants are of amateur status and registered students of the school/program participating.  

NHYDF is also open to anyone who has a passion for dance.  All levels are welcome to submit work.

Can I use props?

Props are allowed at the NHYDF.  Please note:

  • For safety purposes, props and performers should never come within 1 foot from the edge of the stage.
  • Props and materials used in each dance must be listed and described in the submission.  No form of liquid, gel, aerosol, glitter, powder or paint may be used that will physically alter the surface of the floor. Rosin will not be permitted for use. Fire, glass, swords, knives, weapons and use of live animals are prohibited.
  • Hanging backdrops and special lighting may not be used.
  • Helium balloons are only allowed if they are weighted and if permitted by the venue.
  • For safety measures, all props (free-standing or hand-held) are restricted to a maximum height of 15 feet. The use of safety railings is recommended.
  • If the weight of a prop exceeds the maximum weight limit for a built stage, or the Festival Director feels the weight of the prop is a safety hazard, the dancers will not be allowed to use the prop. When sliding props or moving scenery, please be careful not to damage the floor. If floor is damaged beyond repair, the studio owner/director will be responsible for its replacement.
  • Props must be loaded in and out of the venue on the same day they will be used. Storing props in the wings or backstage is not allowed. NHYDF will not be responsible for props left overnight or unattended.
  • Any special request for the assembling of props must be discussed with the Festival Director prior to arrival to the venue. All props backstage MUST be labeled with the studio name for identification purposes.
  • If the stage is littered during a performance, dancers are expected to clean the stage completely of all debris with in time limit of performance.

Are there any additional performance rules?

We have a few rules for performances to keep our participants and audiences safe, and to keep the festival on time.

  • Dancers must perform in their scheduled order unless special permission is given.
  • If the stage is littered during an act, please be ready to clean it up immediately following the performance.
  • Dancers must perform their ENTIRE act on the stage. Performer may not enter or exit the stage from anywhere other than the wings. Starting the performance from the audience or ending in the audience is also not permitted.
  • Special stage or house lighting will not be provided for any performance.

What about etiquette and behavior?

The NHYDF firmly believes in the art of dance, and as such we ask that our participants, audiences and performers attend the event with positive, open minds and curiosity.  The NHYDF exists as a vehicle to promote the arts, encourage artistic ventures, and present dance to all kinds of new and current audiences.

It is of the utmost importance that participants understand that the NHYDF has a zero-tolerance policy in regards to bullying.  While the NHYDF aims to create conversations about dance, these conversations should be constructive and worthwhile.  Participants may be asked to leave and forfeit their performance opportunity should there be any kind of negative behavior towards another performer, organization, staff member, volunteer, or other associated with the NHYDF.

The NHYDF reserves the right to ask any organization, group or performer to leave the premises for any reason deemed fit.

Will there be photos or videos available from the event?

Information on purchasing photos and/or videos will be made available prior to the event for participants.