Dance Logo

Upcoming Dance Events

Friday, October 24, 2014 – Sunday, October 26, 2014

Moderation Dance Concert


Friday, October 24, 7:30 pm
Saturday, October 25, 2 pm and 7:30 pm
Sunday, October 26 at 4pm
Theater Two, Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts
Free, reservations required; Box office 845-758-7900

Friday, December 12, 2014 – Sunday, December 14, 2014

Senior Dance Concert


December 12–14, 7:30 pm
December 14, 2:00 pmTheater Two, Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts
Free, reservations required; Box office 845-758-7900

Courses

The Dance Program offers 100-level studio classes for first-year students and other beginning dancers; 200-level classes, which are open to all students at the intermediate level of technique; and 300-level classes, open to all students with the experience appropriate for an advanced-level course. All dance studio classes have live musical accompaniment. Tutorials arise out of a student's interest in delving deeply into a subject that is not generally covered in the curriculum. Topics have included dance pedagogy, partnering technique, pointe work, and specific elements of dance history and dance science.

Course Offerings:

Introduction to Modern dance

This course provides an introduction to four very important aspects of dance: how to dance without becoming injured, how to develop an awareness of the body in space, how to move that body through space, and how to create dance with attention to rhythm, momentum and balance.

Beginning Ballet

In the beginning level of ballet technique, students will explore fundamental issues of anatomy, alignment and movement efficiency. Emphasis is placed on moving through space, relating to music (both keeping time and exploring personal expression), and integrating anatomical concepts while moving.

Intermediate Modern dance

The intermediate dancer’s task is to refine and develop musical and stylistic control, to improve in strength, flexibility and muscle coordination, and to address personal alignment issues.  In both floor and standing work, coordination and spatial challenges are introduced.  Students learn progressively more complex phrases of movement, playing with shifts of energy, momentum and direction, with the goal of moving with precision and commitment.

Intermediate Ballet

This is the intermediate level of ballet technique that continues development of vocabulary. Emphasis is placed on form—maintaining accuracy, clear definition of movements, dynamic alignment, musicality—both keeping time and qualitative recognition.

Advanced Modern dance

At the advanced level, the warm-up is more difficult and students are expected to learn phrases more quickly.  Students work to develop an articulate, alert and neutral body, ready for precise dancing with intricate coordination. Clarity, simplicity of movement, and attention to detail are key objectives. Advanced dancers are encouraged to take risks to expand the range of their movement practice.

Advanced Ballet

The advanced level of ballet technique focuses on development and expansion in all areas of technique, including musicality, expressivity, dynamic alignment and incorporation of biomechanical principles.  Students are expected to engage in the communicative aspect of the art form and to understand the dynamic relationship between technique and artistry. Challenges include working with extremes variations in tempo, spatial complexity, and complicated movement patterning.

Contact Improvisation

Contact Improvisation (CI) is an improvisational duet dance form based on immediate response to sensation, weight, touch, and communication. This course explores states of presence, perception, awareness, and responsiveness to one's self and environment. This course will cultivate these states as a broader context for a study of physical strategies related to gravity, momentum, flight, falling, and rolling. This course will touch on creating scores for articulate improvising, witnessing and performing CI, and making space for open jamming and critical discussion on how you see and experience contact. CI is a rich opportuntiy for creative physical engagement with another person or group and is accessible to people of all physical abilities and experiences.

Dance Composition

All 100-level Composition classes provide an introduction to the fundamentals of movement, including timing, energy, space, balance, and phrasing. Viewing other students’ work and learning to articulate constructive criticism will serve to hone each dancer’s aesthetic eye.
Composition classes at the 200 level focus more closely on the issues of crafting by addressing questions of phrase development, form, and relationship to sound/music. Bringing awareness to personal movement habits, students will continue to broaden their personal vocabulary, experimenting with new ways of generating and shaping material. 
At the 300 level, Composition classes will address production elements in dance performance, including lighting, costumes, and sound, and how these factors affect performance.

Critical Analysis and Choreographic Methods

This course includes an in-depth look at the themes, choreographic techniques, and artistic processes used by the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company.  Selected works and their generation will be studied and evaluated as a springboard for class-based exercises and projects.  Coursework will focus on developing both capable choreographers and dancers as adept participants in a collaborative process.

Dance Repertory

Designed to expose students to the real life demands of a professional dancer, class time will be spent in the development and rehearsal of a dance in preparation for a public performance at semester’s end. Choreographers consist of faculty and outside guest artists.

Dance Workshop

The Dance Workshop is a once-weekly evening workshop during which undergraduates present works in progress for critical feedback from faculty and peers. This is one of the most important pedagogical assets of the Dance Program. It is a built-in system of multiple faculty advisers for Senior Projects, it operates as a Junior Seminar for moderated students, and it builds one inclusive community for all of Bard’s dancers, choreographers, and dance appreciators, inside and outside of the major. All students enrolled in dance composition are required to attend.

Dance History

This course, entitled Archeology of Dance: Ten Masterworks of Modernity uses ten dance masterworks of the twentieth century as windows onto the history of dance. The works are diverse in genre and origin, ranging from Nijinsky’s Rite of Spring, to Katherine Dunham’s Shango, to Banchine’s Agon, to the Swing Dance movement of the Harlem Renaissance. Inspired in part by Foucault’s notion of archeology as historical method, the class will treat each masterwork as a site in which history may be traced by delving into the cracks and fissures the work instigates in the historical archive. The class will be a lecture/discussion seminar with weekly reading assignments, several short response papers, and student presentations. Students will be guided in individual research projects culminating in a final paper that while not limited to, must in some way bring the history of dance to bear upon the chosen subject.

Anatomy for the Dancer

This course is designed as an anatomy class for dancers, prospective dance teachers, and anyone interested in the application of anatomy to dance technique. Scientific information is limited to a need-to-know basis, focusing on the musculoskeletal system, with immediate transfer of lecture material to dance-movement concepts. In addition to the weekly lecture, the class will make frequent visits to the dance studio, where students are guided in applying scientific concepts to movement.

The Physics of Dance

This course is geared toward dancers interested in deepening the technical study of the art form through an investigation into the governing laws of physics. Class meetings are held in the dance studio so that students can move back and forth between theory and application.

Junior/Senior Seminar

What is the current landscape of the contemporary performance world?  What are the most relevant models for funding and producing independent work?  Who are the other professionals involved in making a company run?  What are the options for continuing your learning after your undergraduate career and when is graduate school the right next step, if at all?  Utilizing both the technical and administrative personnel of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, this course will provide students with the resources to begin a professional practice.