A choreographer is a professional performance artist who works in the field of dance. In many cases choreographers once performed as actual dancers but now their job is to create dances that others can perform or devise new interpretations of traditional dances.

Choreographers work with all kinds of dance including ballet modern tap jazz folk ethnic and ballroom. They usually hold auditions to select the performers for the dances they are creating. Not only do they coordinate the actual dance steps for the performers and sometimes actually train them how to do the dance steps but often they are in charge of costumes lighting and stage sets.

Some choreographers hold stable jobs with a dance company but others serve as guest choreographers on a seasonal basis. Choreographers can work with either small or major dance opera or musical theater companies. They are also employed in television movies music videos and commercials and some own dance companies of their own.

As they become more experienced and develop their reputations choreographers can sometimes become directors. Being a choreographer requires stamina because the hours are long. It also calls for the ability to work with others on an artistic team.

According to the website many choreographers have a post-secondary degree in dance but there is no formal educational requirement. Years of background and experience are just as acceptable if a choreographer is talented. The job outlook for choreographers is positive because there are many potential venues throughout the country that need them. However getting the best jobs is competitive and only the most talented remain fully employed.

According to the bureau of labor statistics the median annual salary is approximately $34000.

Education Required: High School Diploma & Specialized Training
Avg Salary: $34000
High Salary: $44000
Low Salary: $24000
Tasks: Creates dances that others perform.
Holds auditions to select performers or dancers.
Trains dancers on dance steps.
Devises new interpretations of traditional dances.
Also Called: Performance Artist
Professional Dancer
Artistic Director
Choreographic Director
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