Dance Course Descriptions
- Basic Technique
One-half course for one year. Drawing primarily from the techniques of American modern dance, this class provides a foundation for further study in a variety of dance forms. Students will learn the essentials of both classic and contemporary movement vocabularies and explore elements of choreography through improvisation and composition. The course includes a discussion of historical and critical perspectives from which to view and write about contemporary performance. Elementary instruction in rhythm and kinesiology is also provided. Studio.
- Intermediate Contemporary Dance I
Full course for one semester. Technical study explores the techniques of Limon, Nikolais and Cunningham. Students investigate the elements of dance through improvisation and composition, creating movement vocabulary and building dance phrases. Dances choreographed in class are presented in the end of semester concert. Studio.
- Intermediate Contemporary Dance II
Full course for one semester. Classical and contemporary forms will be the bases from which students develop strength, flexibility and versatility in movement. Composition will focus on orchestration of traditional structures as a vehicle for solo and group dance works. Students participate in discussion and critique of class work and perform in the end of semester concert. Studio.
- Contemporary Performance Ensemble
One-half course for one semester. This course focuses on performance through the development, rehearsal, and production of a contemporary dance work. Students will address the technical, stylistic, and interpretive challenges of the choreographic material presented as well as developing and manipulating choreographic material of their own. Work in and out of class leading to performance will be supported through written responses, small group sessions, and critiques. Prerequisite: instructor’s permission or audition. Dance 211 and 212 (or Dance 210) strongly recommended. Offered on a credit/no credit basis only. May be repeated for credit, with departmental approval. Studio.
One-half or full course for one semester. Since the early 1960s, improvisation has played an increasingly more sophisticated role in contemporary dance. This course will investigate contemporary improvisational practices that are at once creative, performative, and philosophic. The first half of the course will focus on contact improvisation, a partnering form that explores the exchange of physical support, the practice of which has challenged notions of gender roles, ability and disability, and community structure. The second half of the course will focus on choreographic improvisation, an ensemble form in which movement scores are developed and refined over time, and which has influenced changing views of the function of performance and the relationship of makers, performers and viewers of dance. Prerequisite: one year of dance technique, or one year of intermediate-level creative work in dance, music, theater, creative writing, or the visual arts. Studio. Not offered 2006-07.
- Advanced Technique and Composition
Full course for one semester. This class will emphasize rigorous technical training and advanced work in choreography. Technical material will be drawn from classic as well as contemporary movement vocabularies and will include detailed work in alignment and introductory partnering. Choreography assignments will focus on using a variety of source materials and conceptual bases from which to generate both detailed movement material and formal structures. With permission of the instructor, the course may be repeated as an advanced practicum. Prerequisite: Dance 211 and 212 or equivalent experience. Studio. Not offered 2006-07.
- Advanced Technique and Composition
Full course for one semester. Rigorous technical training and advanced work in choreography. Technical material will be drawn from the Nikolais and Limón vocabularies. Choreography assignments will center on non-musical sources for movement invention and various approaches to orchestration of movement material. With permission of the instructor, the course may be repeated as an advanced practicum. Studio.
- Dance Traditions of Western Civilization
Full course for one semester. A survey of the development of dance as a performing art in Western culture, beginning with Greek dance, the court ballet, dances of the Renaissance, and nineteenth century romantic ballet. Lecture-conference. Not offered 2006-07.
- Twentieth Century American Dance
Full course for one semester. Beginning with the Diaghilev ballet and early pioneers of modern dance, this course traces the development of both modern dance and ballet in the United States. Covers the work of major twentieth century choreographers, including Balanchine, Graham, Humphrey, Weidman, Nikolais, Cunningham, and the postmodernists. Lecture-conference. Not offered 2006-07.
- Dance Theory and Criticism
Full course for one semester. A survey of the choreographic theories and criticism of major choreographers of the twentieth century. Particular attention is given to Fokine, Balanchine, Graham, Humphrey, Cunningham, Nikolais, and the postmodern movement. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.
- Special Projects in Choreography: Analogous Forms
One-half or full course for one semester. This class will explore concepts, creative processes and formal concerns derived from literature, music, theater and the visual arts as ways to expand and inform the dance-making process and as bases for interdisciplinary work. Prerequisite: Dance 210, or one year of dance technique and one year of intermediate-level creative process work in movement, music, theater, writing or the visual arts. Conference/studio.
- Dance and Technology
One half or full course for one semester. This class will explore image-making using computer animation, video, digital photography, and other technological tools. Students will create performances works exploring the combination of technologically created images and live performance. Prerequisite: Dance 211 and 212 (or Dance 210), one year of dance technique, or one year of intermediate-level creative work in dance, music, theater, creative writing, or the visual arts. Studio.
- Cultural Studies in Dance
Full course for one semester. Gender, ethnicity, and sexual orientation continue to be among the critical markers of difference in our society—differences that not only have profound effects in the lives of individuals but broadly affect our institutions, values, and norms. As an embodied cultural practice, dance is uniquely positioned to signal, reinforce, or challenge social categories of identity—to explicitly and implicitly reflect or reconfigure our notions of self and other. This class will consider concepts in cultural studies, focusing especially on identity, in order to explore both what cultural studies can offer dance and what dance can offer cultural studies. Prerequisite: sophomore standing. Conference-studio. Not offered 2006-07.
- Independent Study
One-half or full course for one semester. Prerequisite: approval of
instructor and division.
Top of Page