This is a one-semester survey course designed to introduce dance as a performing art form, historically as well as in practice, and to explore how dance as a cultural phenomenon helps shape and is shaped by cultural values. The course will track the development of dance as a performing art in Europe and in the U.S. from the Renaissance to the 1950s, by identifying important stylistic trends and the works of major contributors to the field, such as the Ballets Russes, Martha Graham and Katherine Dunham. While we will focus on Western concert dance as a performing art, we also will study some dance phenomena cross-culturally in order to broaden our understanding of the function dance serves and its relationship to cultural beliefs and to the history of ideas. The study of dance history provides a lens for exploring the world, its people, and their cultures. Assignments include written work and short movement studies composed by students to explore various aspects of the choreographic process and to embody significant trends in the evolution of dancemaking. No prerequisite. This course is offered every year.
This course introduces movement concepts for the beginning-level student in one particular form of dance. The style being offered will vary each semester, depending on adjunct faculty availability, but may include jazz dance, world dance or tap dance. The specific classes will be determined at the beginning of each academic year. The course involves intensive movement participation; however, there is no stress placed on public performance. No prior experience is necessary. No prerequisite. This course is offered every year.
This course furthers the work of the beginning-level course with increased application of movement principles established by creative artists and teachers from the American and European contemporary dance tradition. Movement fundamentals from other broad-based techniques and somatic principles also are included. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. This course is offered every semester.
This course furthers the work of the beginning-level course with a more in-depth application of the ballet vocabulary and style. Prerequisite: DANC 109 or equivalent or permission of instructor. This course is offered every semester.
This course covers the basic concepts and skills necessary for reading and writing Labanotation, a system for recording movement in symbolic form. Studio work will emphasize re-creating and performing dances from written scores in addition to the theoretical analysis of movement. Class requirements may fulfill Dance Notation Bureau standards for certification in Beginning Labanotation. This course generally is offered every other year.
The theory and practice of making dances is the focus of the choreographer. The fundamentals of composing both solo and group works are presented through the exploration of dance dynamics, improvisation and movement problem-solving. Work will include movement studies, presentations, readings and discussions. Group preparation time outside of class for movement studies is required. Prerequisite: DANC 105 (or concurrent enrollment in DANC 105) or permission of instructor. Concurrent enrollment in a dance technique class is required. DANC 227 and DANC 228 are offered on alternate years.
Advanced technique work in contemporary dance builds upon principles of movement established at the beginning and intermediate levels. In-depth exploration of floor work, improvisation, somatic practices and a variety of postmodern styles promotes artistry, efficiency of movement and integrated strength. Prerequisite: DANC 208 or permission of instructor. This course is offered every semester.