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How Gravity Forms Revolutionized a Ballet

By Vanessa Tillemans


When I met Ballet Wichita, all they had was a Facebook page.  All I saw was opportunity.  They didn’t know it then, but I had a plan that meant big changes for their organization.  I wanted to use Gravity Forms to revolutionize their audition process for dancers.  Every year, they put on a huge production of The Nutcracker for tens of thousands of delighted guests.  It is a wonderful display of Christmas magic coupled with breathtaking dancers.

To prepare for this grand event, dancers from all over the city come to audition.  After I built Ballet Wichita their new powerful website, I asked them if I could move their audition forms online.  The whole world of digital solutions was very new to them, and admittedly, they were unsure about changing a process that they were used to doing on paper.

Their audition form was over one dozen pages and a tedious task for dancers to fill out when they showed up to audition.  The first year I worked with them, I could not talk them into using an online form for auditions.  So I compromised and talked them into letting me redo their audition form to make it simpler and easier to use.  That brought it down to five pages and they enjoyed using it that year.

I did not give up, however, and spent another year trying to convince them that using Gravity Forms could literally change their lives.  Finally, after two years of trying, they gave me the green light to use Gravity Forms to build them their audition forms – changing a standard that had been in place for over 40 years.

They loved how their new form looked, how easy it was to navigate and use, and most of all, how convenient it was for their dancers.  When the day of auditions came, they asked me to be there to help check dancers in and teach them how to use Gravity Forms.  I arrived to show the Board how to use it, and then the dancers started pouring in.  The first year they used Gravity Forms, Ballet Wichita had more dancers audition than in their entire history.  Getting dancers checked in was a process that normally took hours.  Now, thanks to Gravity Forms, it took minutes.

At the end of auditions, the Vice President looked over at me with a smile and said, “This was a huge success!”  Of course it was.  With Gravity Forms, success is not only possible, but a likely reality for businesses that know how to use its power.


Gravity Forms makes it incredibly easy to build complex forms that can accomplish just about anything.  For a ballet that needs to get the data they want from dancers, this is a good thing.  With Gravity Forms, you can drag and drop the form fields you want to use to quickly build your form.

First, we’ll need the Dancer’s Name.  To do this, simply click on the Name field and drag it over to the form area.

You can then change the title of the field to Dancer Name and update the name fields accordingly.

To get the Dancer’s Birth Date, simply use the Date field.

On each field that you select, you get options where you can make further customizations.  To turn the Date field into a field where dancers can enter their birthdate, simply change the options to include a statement (for example) about the birthdate requirement and your preferred format for entering their birthdate.

With the work we’ve done so far, our form now looks like this:

This looks clean, professional, and easy to use.

To organize dancers into age groups so that they are assigned to the correct audition time, we can create a field for age groups.  For this, you’ll use the Radio Buttons field so that only one option can be selected.

To have dancers enter in their academic level, using the Drop Down field is perfect for this.  Simply enter in all of the choices you want to have, and then dancers can choose the one that fits them.

Now you want to know what previous roles dancers have held with the company, and you want them to be able to select multiple roles if they’ve had them.  For that, the Multi Select field lets you enter in your options, and allows the user to select as many as they need to.

For any kind of data you want to collect, the possibilities with Gravity Forms are virtually endless.  Once you collect all of that data, you probably want to have dancers agree to some terms and conditions, without them having to read all of that legal documentation directly in the form itself.  Gravity Forms has a perfect solution for that.  Using Radio Buttons makes it easy for the dancer to select Yes or No to agree to the terms.

Inserting a link into Graivty Forms requires some HTML, but do not worry.  I can show you how to easily do that too.

To generate the HTML you need for this link, simply open up a new page and type the text that you want to appear for that link.  In this case, the text is Dancer Agreement.  Then use the Link button to insert the link that you want that text to go to.

Once you have the link inserted, go to the Text editor and there’s the code you need!  Copy and paste that into your Gravity Forms field.


And that, my friends, is how you completely revolutionize an audition for ballet dancers!


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