About The Program
Welcome to Dance
You have many opportunities to dance at Middlebury. Through the Dance Program in the Department of Theatre and Dance, you can major, joint major, minor, or simply take courses in dance. Auditors are welcome on a space-available basis in all technique sections of our core courses and many more co-curricular classes are offered as well. We emphasize contemporary approaches to dance/movement techniques, composition, performance, and general dance studies.
Take a Course!
DANC 0160 Introduction to Dance is our entry-level dance course—no previous experience required! Many beginners discover a love of dance in DANC 0160 that continues throughout their college years. Some professional careers even start here.
DANC 0160, offered in both fall and spring semesters, presents an overview of the field of dance through training in movement techniques and anatomy, improvisation, composition, history, and writing. The course meets four times a week: MW 11:15 a.m.-12:05 p.m. and TTh 3:00-4:15 p.m. It is offered every semester and will be taught by Christal Brown in Spring 2013.
DANC 0163, From Africa to the Americas: Moving from our Core is an introduction to dance emphasizing the influence of traditions from the African diaspora on contemporary modern dance. Taught by Christal Brown, it meets four times per week: MW from 10:10-11:00 a.m. and TTh 11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m. It will be offered again in Spring 2014.
Do you have significant previous dance training?
DANC 0260 Advanced Beginning Dance, taught this semester by Penny Campbell and Marly Schneider, is open to you. Talk with dance faculty for advice if you are not sure which course is best for you.
DANC 0283 From George Washington to John Travolta: Social Dance in Popular Culture (Spring 2013), taught by Andrew Wentink.
In this course we will examine religion, gender, morality, etiquette, politics, and other cultural and societal issues in American history as they intersect in the public sphere through the activity of social dance. Coursework will involve the investigation of primary source materials including contemporary letters and diaries, dance manuals, newspaper and journal reports, and accounts of social dance in American literature. Students will read texts on dance and cultural history, view images of dance in American art and popular film, and listen to four centuries of American dance music. 3 hrs. lect./2 hrs. screening. TTh 1:30 p.m. - 2:45 p.m. and M 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Officially Audit a Dance Course!
Dance courses meet four or five times a week, depending on the level. You may audit a full course, attending all class sessions, but without responsibility for written work or other projects. After successful completion this course will appear on your transcript as an "official audit". Consult with course instructor at the beginning of the semester for advice on this possibility and to agree on terms for completion.
Dance for PE Credit!
All students receive PE credit for successfully completing a dance course. You may receive PE credit for auditing the technique sections of regular dance courses—two classes per week. Auditing also makes you eligible to perform in program-sponsored concerts. Make arrangements with the instructor of the class you would like to take at the beginning of the semester and attend two classes per week, consistently, at a level appropriate to your experience.
We also sponsor Dance and Movement Classes specifically for PE credit only (see below). These classes meet once a week for 10 weeks; participation at 8 classes is required to earn PE credit. Students with significant experience can apply to teach a PE Movement class.
See our current Dance & Movement Classes for PE Credit
Each fall advanced student choreographers audition dancers for their Fall concert, including the annual Newcomers' Piece, directed by a different faculty member each year. All are welcome to audition. Important: Dancers must be attending a minimum of two approved technique classes consistently each week in order to be eligible to perform in program-sponsored events. Taking class supports your developing artistry, technical range, and skill as a performer as you focus on a particular creative process in rehearsals. The Newcomers' Piece is open to anyone who has not yet performed in a dance program sponsored concert.
Just Want to Dance?
You may audit technique sections of regular courses, or any other dance classes, simply for the pleasure of dancing. Consult with instructors to see if there is room for you in the class of your choice.
Student Dance Groups!
Dance is everywhere at Middlebury. Swing, ballroom, ballet, capoeira, hip-hop, Afro-Caribbean, what's your style? Go to the Activities Fair. Dance clubs abound. If you don't find what you're looking for, start your own club. Ask Student Activities Office (SAO) for more information.
Get a Job!
Join the Dance Production work study crew that supports student, faculty, and guest artist concerts throughout the year or assist in the Dance Office. Contact Jennifer Ponder for further information about open positions. Open positions will be posted on the Student Employment Office (SEO) Web site.
Attend Lectures, Performances, and Master Classes!
A busy schedule of special events, including lectures, demonstrations, performances, workshops, master classes and informal showings is always a part of dance at Middlebury. Check out the Dance Calendar.
The Dance Company of Middlebury
The Dance Company of Middlebury (DCM) is selected each year by audition, and is open to sophomores through seniors and alumni. For the 2012-2013 season, the Dance Company of Middlebury presented its 30th Anniversary Season, Simply Light, directed by Andrea Olsen. Each year the company creates a diverse concert of work for formal performance at Middlebury in January and later on tour. 2013 DCM toured to San Francisco and the Monterey Institute. First year students are encouraged to get to know the Dance Program by taking classes, auditioning for other performances, and attending as many dance concerts as they can before seeking involvement with DCM in their sophomore year.
Dance during Winter Term!
Every January is different! Often introductory dance courses or intensive experiences with visiting artists are offered. Student Activities also sponsors many dance and movement classes during January, taught by students, alumni and guests. If your schedule makes it impossible to dance during fall or spring, or you just can't dance enough, dance in January. The Winter Term catalog comes out in November.
Dance Faculty and Staff for 2011-2012
Penny Campbell, Senior Lecturer in Dance and Director of Dance
Andrea Olsen, Professor of Dance and John C. Elder Professor in Environmental Studies (on leave Spring 2013)
Christal Brown, Assistant Professor of Dance
Catherine Cabeen, Visiting Assistant Professor of Dance
Jennifer Ponder, Lighting Designer and Technical Director
Michael Chorney, Music Director for Dance
Ron Rost, Musician/Composer
BonnieRita Hearthstone, Program Coordinator, 443-5245
all photos by Alan Kimara Dixon