There’s been many stories of people back-stabbing each other in show business. Sometimes it’s just that it’s such a high profile business that everyone notices. But some people are willing to do whatever it takes to get ahead. Which is why some people (like in the show ‘Friends’) might say “It’s show business not friend business.”
Having said that the power of friends cannot be underestimated. Whilst contacts are not everything making lots of friends certainly does not harm your work prospects.
The dance industry may be competitive with lots of dancers going for a small number of jobs. But it’s also a small business where many dancers know each other. Sooner or later someone you probably know will start to do well for themselves.
And you can bet at some point in the life of many dancers they will need to get some dancers together for a show or dance job. Naturally they will call upon the people they already know.
The power of contacts is that you can get invited to jobs and opportunities that would otherwise have passed you by. And you may even be able to get a few good jobs without even having to audition!
So whilst it’s more than possible to succeed having good contacts does help. Some people have made their way successfully through the industry solely on contacts where the misunderstanding has arisen that you can only succeed with contacts.
However these are exceptions. Most people do not make their whole careers out of contacts, but when there are people that do of course it can seem unfair for people who are equally or more deserving.
Even if you think that it’s unfair how some people get jobs because of their contacts it’s pointless harping on about it. It’ll be this way for some time because people will always call upon their friends if they need help – it’s human nature. If you’re good friend also happens to be a choreographer for J-Lo then you might be in luck!
Whatever people may be saying about other people, it’s best to distance yourself away from this as much as you can and just treat everyone as a fellow dancer. At the end of the day all dancers can help each other even if it’s just being a friend.
If you make friends with someone solely to be one of their contacts and get jobs from them they’ll probably sense it. Just be genuine, be polite to people when you can and if someone who’s doing well is in your network, be a friend but don’t beg them for work!