Tips & Advice

Recital Preparation Tips

By Christine Dion of Mode Dion

It’s Recital Prep time!  Are you ready?  Preparation is the key to a confident and polished recital performance. You might have your costumes, music, lighting, and of course the right moves – but what about your makeup and hair?  Even the most seasoned performer should have a makeup and hair rehearsal.  Applying makeup together with fellow performers will help insure everyone is on the same page, in the right look, uniform and polished.

To help you out this season we have a few easy to follow stage makeup step by step application videos with stage beauty expert Christine Dion from Mode Dion. To learn more go to

A polished face is a must.
Here’s how to apply Foundation, Concealer and Powder like a pro

Eyebrows frame your eyes and create balance.
Here are the steps to perfect brows:


Stage eye steps made easy:

False lashes are the Eye Openers:

Create lips that show off your smile and cheeks that are perfectly flushed
and contoured to perfection:

Era and Theme Makeup for Recitals

Recital make-up is important as it complements the costume and sets the mood of the dance piece.  Those little extras capture the era and style of the number.  Whether the dance is 1950’s Grease, a ballet classic, or futuristic pop, it’s the make-up and hair that finishes the look and creates the fantasy.

Here are a few make-up color rules to keep for the next time you create a fantasy face. Remember the theme of the look. Make-up changes every era just like fashion.

The make-up era looks that set the style in their day:

  • In the1920’s black shadow across the lid and deep burgundy rosebud lips were the choice of every flapper girl.
  • In the 1940’s liquid liner sweeping up only on the top lid, with rounded rich red lips were popular.
  • In the 1950’s blue shadow and pink lipstick were the colors of the moment.
  • The 1960’s saw heavy lined eyes, white shadow all over the lid and gray shadow through the crease.  The lips were washed out in light beige to keep the eyes the focus.
  • In the 1970’s blue shadow was back in, but with frost for the lid and white shadow highlighted under the brow. The face was brightened with pink cheeks and pale pink glossy lips.
  • In the 1980’s, the era of excess, we saw three colors of bright shadow, heavy brows, and bright lipstick.  Think Cindy Lauper.

When creating a fantasy, the era may not play a role at all. Instead you might want to play on the imagination of the audience.  Create magic by defining the character of the piece.

Fantasy character looks and the colors that make them come alive:

  • The ShowGirl.  Feathers in the hair, big lashes and glitter everywhere. The brighter the colors the better.
  • The Spanish Flamingo Dancer.  Heavy black eye liner sweeping up at the corners, red lips, and a split curl along the side of the cheek.
  • The Cat.  Whether you choose a lion, a leopard, or a tiger, the drama is purr-fect for a feline fantasy. Use face pencils or greasepaint in black, brown, orange, yellow, white, and red/brown.
  • Fairy Princess.  A favorite for classical pieces, this look is soft and sweet.  Use lots of glitter and sparkling shimmers, placed only on the key light catching spots.
  • Man look.  This look includes a suit and tie with hair parted and slicked back, but the face is feminine.  Lips are red or defined with lots of gloss, cheekbones are contoured and eyes are shaded in browns with thick black lashes.
  • Make-up to accent costumes.  Add rhinestones and glitter to the face in complimenting colors to draw attention to unique costume detail.  Other accents can include:
    Glitter, sparkling powders.  These light catching products can turn any look into a magical fairy princess or a futuristic intergalactic arrival.
    Wigs- Try a wig or hair piece.


Special Discount Offer just for Dance Informa readers.
Mini Stage Kit with Professional Eye liner Brush.
Retails at $63.50, but Mode Dion is offering a Dance Informa Reader SPECIAL for only $48.00!
($15.50 off!) * Offer expired July 2014.

The Mini Stage Kit contains the perfect stage makeup to create a polished and professional performance face. Rich high quality pigment, the 5 color eyeshadow pallet doubles as cake eye liners too, with a professional eye liner brush for flawless lining application. Two versatile defining eye shadow shades allow for multiple looks. Stage Red cheek color flushes cheeks to perfection and compliments the Stage Red long lasing lip color and liner for enhancing and shaping lips.

Phone 760.837.9433 to order

Christine Dion has worked internationally as a makeup artist in fashion, print, television and stage. She has been in the beauty industry for over 30 years as an artist and educator. Check out her website for more information.

Top photo: © Jorgosphotos |

Published by Dance Informa digital dance magazinedance news, dance auditions & dance events for the professional dancer, dance teacher and dance students.

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