Christal Brown

Assistant Professor of Dance

Program Chair

 Spring Term 2017-Monday's 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m., or by appointment
 Mahaney Center for the Arts 116

Christal Brown (choreographer, educator, performer, writer and activist) is a native of Kinston, North Carolina, and received her BFA in dance and minor in business from the University of NC at Greensboro. Upon graduation, Brown went on to tour nationally with Chuck Davis' African-American Dance Ensemble and internationally with Andrea E. Woods/Souloworks. Immediately following those experiences, Brown performed with and managed Gesel Mason Performance Projects while apprenticing with the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange in Takoma Park, Maryland. Upon relocating to New York Brown, apprenticed with the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company before finding a home with Urban Bush Women, where she spent three seasons as a principal performer, community specialist and apprentice program coordinator.

Aside from performing, Brown is the Founding Artistic Director of INSPIRIT, a performance ensemble and educational conglomerate dedicated to bringing female choreographers together to collaborate and show new work, expanding the views of women of all ages, and being a constant source of inspiration to its audience as well as members. Founded in 2000, INSPIRIT has been honored to show work at Aaron Davis Hall, St. Mark's Church, Joyce Soho, The Lincoln Theater of Washington, D.C., and various other venues across the country.

Combining her athleticism, creativity, love for people, and knack for teaching, Brown continues to teach and create works that redefine the art of dance and the structure of the field.

DVD available in the college bookstore:

Christal Brown’s “Liquid Strength”
A technique laboratory focused on moving, intention, and analyzation

Combining the focus and intention of a meditative practice with a series of exercises designed to train the body in articulate expression as well as athletic execution, Brown's class focuses on developing the total artist. Exercises focus on alignment, torso and spinal flexibility, clarity of focus, upper body strength, lower body strength, and abdominal control. Working to transform philosophical notions of being into movement explorations, students discover intersections between technique and performance, yielding transference.



Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

ARDV0116 - The Creative Process      

The Creative Process
In this course, students will have the opportunity to dig deeply into their own creativity and explore the processes by which ideas emerge and are given shape in the arts. The experiential nature of this course integrates cognition and action, mind and body. Students will engage a range of modes of discovering, knowing, and communicating, which are designed to push them beyond their present state of awareness and level of confidence in their creative power. Practical work will be closely accompanied by readings and journaling, culminating with the creation and performance of a short project. (First- and second-year students only; Not open to students who have taken FYSE 1364) 3 hrs. lect. ART

Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015

More Information »

ARDV0216 - Collaboration in the Arts      

Collaboration in the Arts: The Creative Process Continues
Taking the experience and knowledge produced in ARDV 0116, The Creative Process, as our starting place, we will collaborate to build more extended, complex, multi-media projects- including performances, installations, and hybrid works. We will research artistic collaboration, that slippery creative relationship with models in every variety of art production, to inspire our hands-on investigations and put them into historical and cultural context. Readings will come from recent literature on collaboration in the arts. Journals, short research papers/presentations, and daily in-class experimentation will culminate in substantial final projects that are original, collaborative, and unpredictable. (ARDV 0116, ARDV 0117, or equivalent, or by approval) ART

Winter 2015

More Information »

DANC0163 - From Africa to the Americas      

From Africa to the Americas: Moving from Our Core
This course is an introduction to dance emphasizing the influence of traditions from the African Diaspora on contemporary modern dance. Technique sessions incorporate styles from West Africa and Central and South America with performance work. Discussion of readings on the history and current practice of movement forms originating in Africa, as well as on the work of artists developing fusion styles, supports written and creative work. Compositional studies explore the intersection between technique, history/theory, and performance. (No previous dance experience required.) 2 hrs. lect./3 hrs. lab ART PE

Spring 2014, Spring 2016, Spring 2017

More Information »

DANC0260 - Advanced Beginning Dance I      

Advanced Beginning Dance I
This is the first course in the studio sequence for students entering Middlebury with significant previous dance experience. It is also the course sequence for those continuing on from DANC 0160 or DANC 0161 and provides grounding in the craft of modern dance needed to proceed to more advanced levels. Modern dance movement techniques are strengthened to support an emerging individual vocabulary and facility with composition. Students regularly create and revise movement studies that focus on the basic elements of choreography and the relationship of music and dance. Readings, journals, and formal critiques of video and live performance contribute to the exploration of dance aesthetics and develop critical expertise. (DANC 0160 or by approval) 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. lab ART PE

Fall 2013, Fall 2015

More Information »

DANC0261 - Improvisational Practices      

Improvisational Practices
In this course students will gain an embodied understanding of the practices and techniques needed to proceed to advanced improvisational work. Research into forms such as partnering, ensemble work, text, musical exercises, compositions, and scores/projects will focus on mapping the moving body in the moment. Readings, journals, and responses to video viewings and live performances contribute to the exploration of historical contexts, aesthetics, and cultural improvisations. 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. lab ART PE

Fall 2013

More Information »

DANC0361 / FMMC0361 - Movement and Media      

Movement and Media
In this course we will take an interdisciplinary look at the dynamic relationship between the body and digital media. Students will develop skills in basic film editing, real-time software manipulation, open-source media research, project design, and collaboration. We will address design history and theories of modern media through readings and multimedia sources. Process and research papers and work-in-progress showings will document ongoing collaborations that will culminate in an informal showing at the end of the semester. This course is open to students of all artistic backgrounds who are interested in significantly expanding their creative vocabularies and boundaries to include dance. (Approval required; DANC 0261 required for dance students) 3 hrs. lect., 3 hrs. lab. ART PE

Spring 2014

More Information »

DANC0380 - Dance Company      

Dance Company of Middlebury
Dancers work with the artistic director and guest choreographers as part of a dance company, learning, interpreting, rehearsing, and performing dances created for performance and tour. Those receiving credit can expect four to six rehearsals weekly. Appropriate written work, concert and film viewing, and attendance in departmental technique classes are required. Auditions for company members are held in the fall semester for the year. One credit will be given for two terms of participation. Performances and tour are scheduled in January. (Limited to sophomores through seniors, by audition.) (DANC 0260; Approval required) 4 hrs. lect./4 hrs. lab ART PE

Fall 2013, Fall 2017

More Information »

DANC0381 - Dance Company of Middlebury      

Dance Company of Middlebury
Dancers work with the artistic director and guest choreographers as part of a dance company, learning, interpreting, rehearsing, and performing repertory dances. Those receiving credit can expect daily rehearsals plus technique classes, campus performance, and tour. Appropriate written work is required. Auditions are held in the fall semester for the full year; one credit will be given for two semesters of participation. (Approval Required; limited to sophomores through seniors by audition) WTR

Winter 2014

More Information »

DANC0460 - Intermediate/Advanced DanceII      

Intermediate/Advanced Dance III: The Place of Dance
In this course we will investigate three aspects of place in relation to dance: where we source movement, the relevance of dance in culture, and the effects of place on the moving dancing body. Material covered will include body systems dance technique at the intermediate/advanced level, improvisation and composition toward choreography and site specific work, readings and reflective writing, and performance viewing. The course culminates in formal and informal showings of performance work. The emergence of a personal philosophy and dance aesthetic will be engaged and formally articulated in writing. (DANC 0261; this course may be taken in any sequence with DANC 0360, DANC 0361, DANC 0461) 4.5 hrs. lect./2 hrs. lab. ART PE

Fall 2014

More Information »

DANC0470 - Technique Workshop      

Technique Workshop
This advanced physical and theoretical study of a variety of movement techniques will further prepare dance majors and minors for the rigors of performance, technical craft, and physical research. Exercises and discussions will revolve around increased subtlety, strength, flexibility, musicality, and dynamics with the goal of heightening the communicative range of the moving body. Rotating movement aesthetics taught by dance faculty. (Approval required) ART PE

Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017

More Information »

DANC0500 - Independent Project      

Independent Project
(Approval Required)

Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Winter 2016, Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Fall 2017

More Information »

DANC0700 - Independent Project      

Independent Project
(Approval Required)

Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Winter 2016, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Winter 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018

More Information »

FYSE1441 - The good Body      

The “good” Body
In this seminar we will examine the roles bodies play in defining our public and private identities. What indications of beliefs, access, and cultural values do our bodies provide? What counts as a “good” body? Who has one (or doesn’t), and why? The many different answers to these and related questions impact every body in our Middlebury community and beyond. Topics will include aesthetic and ideological issues relating to the body; course work includes physically based workshops, oral presentations, written analyses and creative responses. 3 hrs. sem. ART CW

Fall 2015

More Information »

SUMR1004 - MiddCore SNC      

MiddCORE—Sierra Nevada College, Incline Village, NV
MiddCORE’s mentor-driven leadership and innovation program builds skills and confidence through collaborative, experiential, impact-focused learning. Through daily, weekly, and month-long challenges, students gain experience in leadership, strategic thinking, idea creation, collaboration, persuasive communication, ethical decision-making, cross-cultural understanding, conflict resolution, empathy, and crisis management. The class meets over 40 hrs/week with additional evening and weekend activities. Acceptance into MiddCORE's Summer Program is by application only. To learn more about this summer's MiddCORE curriculum and how to apply, visit or email (Pass/Fail). non-standard grade Summer Study

Summer Study 2017

More Information »

Program in Dance

Mahaney Center for the Arts
72 Porter Field Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753