With a growing emphasis on specialized training, many colleges are offering concentrated degrees within the overall dance major, focused on preparing dancers for very specific aspects of the industry—from ballet to ballroom to commercial. DS rounded up some of the hottest programs with hyper-focused degree tracks.
Texas Celebrates 60 Years of Dance
Last fall, Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX, kicked off an anniversary celebration that will continue throughout the school year. Six decades have passed since the institution became the first American university to offer a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in ballet.
The festivities began last November with a gala concert that featured works by George Balanchine, Doris Humphrey, Jessica Lang and Robert Battle, plus those of a few faculty members. This spring, the school will host a number of guest artist residencies, and hold various performances, discussions and open-to-the-public events. For a comprehensive list of anniversary happenings, visit dance.tcu.edu.
Universities Present Annual Fall Choreography Showcases
Select students from Oklahoma City University, Marymount Manhattan College and Northwestern University had the chance to propose, create and publicly present dances at student choreography showcases held at each school last fall.
The Oklahoma City University Student Choreography Show Perfect 10 featured works by 17 dance performance seniors. John Bedford, dean of the university’s Ann Lacy School of American Dance & Arts Management, tells DS that students were required to develop routines that reflected the school’s focus on “dance for the entertainment industry.”
In NYC, Marymount Manhattan College held its annual Dancers at Work showcase, featuring the work of nine aspiring choreographers. The show was the culminating performance of workshops that met twice a week. Students chosen for the workshops were encouraged to experiment with the art of dance making, some for the first time.
At Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, the Fall Dance Concert 2009 featured the work of eight student choreographers. The show was produced by the dance department and The New Movement Project, a student dance group that works with graduating dance majors and faculty to select the pieces to be showcased.