COVID-19 FAQs for the Bard Dance Program
How will dance classes be handled during the pandemic?
Any dance class taking place in the Fisher Center for the Performing Arts will follow a strict cleaning and safety protocol, including:
- Pedestrian traffic patterns will be established through clear entrances into and out of the building in order to control flow and reduce density.
- All dance class sizes will be reduced to accommodate maintaining social distancing.
- All persons in the studio will wear a mask at all times.
- Faculty will choreograph the placement of dancers while in the studio, including both the numbers of dancers moving through space simultaneously as well as frequency and length of time for each movement pattern or exercise.
- Any shared surfaces (like barres) will be cleaned immediately before and after each class.
- The dance floor will be mopped between each class and fans added to decrease drying time and increase air flow.
- Studio doors and windows will be open during each class.
- Instructors may choose to hold dance classes (or portions of classes) outside if/when appropriate.
- There will be limited number of people allowed at one time in the changing and bathroom areas.
Will there still be dance performances?
- The Program will maintain its commitment to offer students opportunities to create and perform work in the Thorne Studio and the LUMA Theater with modifications for in-person gatherings per New York State guidelines.
- The Program will livestream each performance.
Will the dance studios be available for use outside of class time?
- Students will have access to the studios outside of class time through a reservation process that will include strict adherence to programmatic COVID protocols and studio use rules.
- Dance studios will be available to students by reservation until 10:00 p.m. each evening.
General FAQs for the Bard Dance Program
Do I need to audition to enroll in classes in the dance program, or to become a dance major?
All interested students are welcome to enroll in dance classes.
There is no formal audition to become a dance major. Rather, the student’s first three semesters of work serve as the process by which both the student and the dance faculty ascertain whether or not this is an appropriate major for the student. During the second semester of the sophomore year, the student moderates into the dance program after their original choreography is produced for the mid-term dance concert.
I have extensive previous experience in dance--do I have to enroll in an introductory level course?
Many of Bard’s first-year students have had several years of previous dance study. Each student meets with his or her advisor and confers with the teacher of each class to determine the appropriate level at which to begin. Students may also change classes at any time during the drop/add period, which lasts the first two weeks of each semester.
How many dance classes may I take each week?
Students must enroll in a minimum of two dance classes each week; some enroll for as many as six.
How many dances classes must a dance major take each week?
Majors must take two dance classes per semester. We recommend that intending majors take two classes in the semester of moderation. There is no minimum number of classes for non-majors.
How often will I get to perform if I come to Bard?
The dance program presents four different dance concerts for the public each year. Each concert has a run of four performances. Bard dancers, both majors and involved non-majors, can be very busy—up to 25 dances are in rehearsal each semester. In addition, there are many dance, theater, and performance opportunities in different sites on campus, including the student-run performance space.
Can I double major? Can I minor in dance?
Bard College does not have a “minor” in its curricular structure. Dancers tend to be very good at time management, and therefore are usually able to juggle the requirements of two majors. Each student must have the support of any program they hope to major in.
What kinds of careers do Bard dance majors pursue after college?
Many dance majors pursue careers as professional performers or choreographers after graduation. Like graduates of all liberal arts institutions, Bard Dance alumni/ae are represented in a wide variety of careers, including law, medicine, social work, teaching, writing, and design.
Can I work backstage at Bard?
Many paid opportunities exists backstage and in front-of-house. Students who want to acquire more skills may also take tutorials in technical theater, lighting design or costume design. Many of our students find work in theaters and dance schools in the summers and after college.
Is it possible to study dance seriously as a non-major?
All dance classes are open to non-majors, and students who have taken one semester of Dance Composition are eligible to audition their choreography for production in the mid-term dance concerts.
Is there a dress code for dance classes?
Although the professor determines specific requirements for each class, students can assume that form-fitting exercise wear is appropriate. Professors that require footwear will discuss its specifics during the first class—students need not obtain footwear until after the first class session.
What styles of dance might I be able to take at Bard?
Prospective students are welcome to observe technique classes when they visit Bard. The Dance program offers courses in many different techniques so that students who become professional dancers become adept at learning new styles from different choreographers. For this reason, full and part-time faculty teach several modern dance traditions as well as ballet. Modern dance classes reflect the many styles of dance that our faculty have performed and studied. Similarly, faculty who teach Dance Composition introduce a variety of approaches to choreography, so that students learn a variety of creative approaches to this art.