Theater Gear

6 Affordable Recital Dresses for Singers

Female singer in a recital dress by a piano

There are lots of things to be nervous about when you’re planning a recital; your dress shouldn’t be one of them! The best recital dresses for singers make you feel your most beautiful — and the more confident you are, the easier it is to perform.

Picking a voice recital dress doesn’t sound hard — until you zip up a gorgeous gown and realize you can’t take a full breath. So. You need to find a dress that looks amazing, lets your ribs expand, and doesn’t catch on your heels when you walk across the stage. That’s a tall order.

Our team members at Theater Love do a lot of concert work, so we’re always in search of cute and comfortable recital dresses. Since we’re also on singers’ budgets, affordable gowns are a high priority. Bonus points if the dress looks more expensive than it is!

These are some of the best dresses we’ve found recently. Whether you’re doing a senior recital or singing a solo, they’ll help you look and sound your best. Some of the links are affiliate links; learn more here.

Top image courtesy of Quincena Musical under CC BY 2.0

1. For a Semi-Formal Concert: the LD Dress recital dress for singers

How gorgeous is this fit-and-flare dress from LD Dress? It’s perfect for a solo voice recital when you want to look special but not overly formal. The magic is in the fabric — it’s substantial, so it maintains its shape. The soft sheen looks lovely under the stage lights, and the sleeveless bodice gives you plenty of freedom to hold your music while you sing.

We love the neckline on this dress; the wide boatneck flatters your collarbone, and the vertical slit adds interest without showing off too much.

2.Versatile Cocktail-Length Dress for Singers: Dress the Population Courtney

When your dress budget is limited, you want to find a style that works for your voice recital and other elegant events. The Dress the Population Courtney dress is the perfect choice — with its black lace overlay and below-the-knee hem, it’ll take you from a recital to a wedding. The color scheme looks equally gorgeous in the sumer and the winter.

This is another style that looks lovely no matter what your shape. The secret is the faux-wrap bodice; it adjusts to suit your shape. Plus, since there’s plenty of give to the fabric, singing is a breeze.

3. A Voice Recital Dress You’ll Wear Again and Again: Alisapan Chiffon Dress

Over the course of your singing career, you’ll need to dress for recitals and concerts on a regular basis. This full-length Alisapan black dress is one you’ll wear again and again. It’s incredibly versatile — wear it as a concert black dress for choir performances, use it for formal cabarets, or break it out when you sing your first solo with an orchestra.

We love this dress because it fits singers in a range of shapes and sizes. The satiny waistband adds a touch of shine, and the full skirt moves beautifully. We love the sleeves; they float over your upper arms and give you plenty of room to gesture while you’re singing. When you’re not feeling body-confident, this dress will make you feel beautiful. If you’re not into black, there are a few other colors to choose from.

4. Dress Like a Diva for Your Big Recital: Adrianna Papell Mikdao Gown

The second you step out onto the stage in the Mikado Gown from Adrianna Papell, you will feel like a full-blown diva. The dramatic, full skirt. The delicate high-low hem. The elegant geometric seaming on the bodice. Stunning! Somehow, every body type looks perfect in this dress — seriously, check out the customer photos. It’s the perfect choice when you’re singing with a full orchestra.

Currently, this dress is only available in green; it’s a gorgeous choice for a fall or winter voice recital. If you’re feeling adventurous, this jumpsuit also has serious diva vibes.

5. When You Want to Feel Like a Professional Singer: Carmen Marc Valvo Infusion Ball Gown

Have you ever dreamed of being a professional singer? This gorgeous taffeta ballgown has serious orchestra-soloist vibes! The print is eye-catching but still refined, and the colors look lovely on a range of skin tones. We love that the one-shoulder design offers a peek of your collarbone, but you can still breathe deeply without the risk of slipping.

This is the perfect recital dress for your senior voice recital. A strapless body shaper or a strapless slip is a great way to get a bit of extra support.

If you want a similar silhouette in softer colors, check out incredible print on this blush-pink dress.

6. For an Elegant Evening Concert: MUXXN 30s-Style Dress

Bring a bit of old-world glam to a formal evening recital, with this MUXXN evening dress. The nipped-in waist and modest neckline show off your figure, and the flared hem balances your hips for a stunning hourglass shape. Look a little closer — do you see the geometric seaming? It adds a 30s flare that’s perfect for a recital.

Although the fabric of this recital dress looks like satin, it has just the right amount of stretch. That means that you can breathe easily, and the dress hugs your curves perfectly. This is one of the more fitted recital dresses for singers, so we’d definitely recommend a body shaper — without it, the audience will be able to see your underwear line!

Choosing What to Wear to a Recital

image courtesy of Quincena Musical under CC BY 2.0

When we’re choosing concert gowns and voice recital dresses for singers, this is what we look for:

  • Flattering
  • Affordable
  • Room to breathe!
  • Stylish but not distracting (no wild prints or deep V’s that might take away from the music)

If you’re doing a senior recital, keep in mind that your program might have specific guidelines for singers. Most schools require you to dress professionally, which basically means no super-high slits or excessive cleavage. Others go so far as to recommend a high neckline or a full skirt.

When you have more flexibility, look for dresses that make you feel amazing. When you’re singing in a recital, the last thing you want to be thinking about is an ill-fitting top or a sleeveless bodice that slips every time you inhale. (nightmare) Then, you need a dress that allows you to take a full singer’s breath. It’s also helpful to look for dresses that allow your arms to move easily so you can express yourself fully.

What recital dresses for singers are you looking for? What did you wear to your senior voice recital? Send us a message or tag us on Instagram!