A Belly dancer's cover letterBy Salome
A Belly dancer and/or Belly dance teacher wishing to gain employ in a professional capacity would do well to have a promotional package for prospective clients. I use the term client to signify any potential employer, be it a studio owner or an international agent.
A promotional package is comprised of articles that, essentially, demonstrate the desirability of an artist to clients. The cover letter is one of many such articles. If you have yet to prepare a promotional package, you may have questions that I hope to address in this series of articles.
Two points worth mention:
You will notice that I put my example paragraphs in bold but I only did so here for readability against the notes I included. I would also suggest that you avoid writing in all capital letters, or printing your cover letter on paper with a busy design or color that makes it difficult to read. Using a pristine sheaf of resume grade paper stock is optimal.
While the formula below can be used as the skeleton for all of your cover letters it is important to tailor the letter to individual clients and the specific position the client is auditioning for. The cover letter is the only article in your promotional package in which you speak directly to the client, so make it count.
|January 1, 2007|
PO Box 111
Dear Mr. Wadud,
Avoid "To whom it may concern" or "Dear madam/sir". If you are unable to discover the name of the client, opt for "Greetings" or "Good day".
My name is Jane and I am an Oriental dance artist based in Portland, Oregon. A dancer in your employ, Alana Rose, suggested I contact you in regards to the principal role in your upcoming production "Raks Habibi." I would like to audition for the role and am submitting my materials for your review.
Use the first paragraph to introduce yourself and reveal why you are contacting the client. If you have any connection to the client bring it up here - were you referred by someone the client is familiar with or perhaps you met the client at a function? If there is no connection, tell the reader how you know about him/her and the reason for your promotional submission.
I recently returned from Germany where I starred in a three week run of "Feminine Mystique", a showcase of interpretive dances from North Africa and the Mid-East at the Admiralspalast theater. My Manager and I are now producing my performance DVD and release gala at the Aladdin theater in Portland, Oregon.
In the second paragraph, tell the client what projects you are currently involved in (that relate to Oriental performance and/or instruction). You want to demonstrate your success, ambition and entice the reader to spend time reviewing your submission. If you've had many recent activities worth mention, single out the events that are most relevant to what you are auditioning for.
I am available for rehearsal two weeks prior to the opening night of "Raks Habibi." I will be performing at Artcentric in Vancouver on the 25th of January and would be glad to set aside a pair of tickets for you. I appreciate your time and attention and will contact you in two weeks time to touch base about the status of my audition.
The third paragraph should provide information specifically requested in the position that is not covered in your resume, like your date of availability. If you are in the same region as the client this is a good place to mention where he/she can see you perform. In closing, state how you plan to follow up.
Jane Smith (hand signature)
PO Box 555,
Portland, Oregon, 97201
1 (555) 555-5555