Middlebury Dancers perform.

Learning Goals

Consistent with its liberal arts mission, the Dance Department offers a rich set of six foundational courses required of all Dance majors and minors. Beyond these shared foundational courses, students have the opportunity to specialize in one of three tracks;

Choreography and Performance, Production and Technology, and Dance Studies.

Our majors develop a scholarly and embodied perspective of their studies within each track.

All our graduating students are expected to:

  • Attain intermediate/advanced proficiency in contemporary dance techniques
  • Cultivate the discipline of rigorous imagination to choreograph and produce successful, original, contemporary dance works
  • Gain experience in the theatrical integration of production and technology
  • Experience a range of diverse perspectives on the creative process across artistic disciplines
  • Acquire a broad understanding of history and culture through dance
  • Understand anatomy and kinesiology through embodied practice
  • Demonstrate the ability to pursue scholarly research and presentation
  • Develop the ability to articulate the interdisciplinary aspects of dance to those both familiar and unfamiliar with the art form
  • Complete an independent senior thesis that demonstrates the students unique artistic/scholarly voice

Mission Statement

The Dance Department at Middlebury College focuses on the creation of original creative work in a context that is interdisciplinary and deeply connected to the current dance field. The department distinguishes itself through a rich curricular tradition of improvisation, somatic learning, and utilization of the arts in the quest for connected and courageous embodiment.

Our core curriculum consists of a series of courses in contemporary approaches to technique, composition and performance, anatomy and somatics, dance history and cultural study, creative process, and improvisation. Depth and range of the creative process are achieved through study in theatre, art, music, philosophy, and other disciplines represented in the larger Middlebury curriculum.

Joint and full dance majors propose thesis projects in their senior year. These projects often culminate in performance but can take any form of artistic scholarship. Many of our students study abroad during their junior year, joining programs all over the world that support their global understanding of dance and culture. Preprofessional training is provided through the Dance Company of Middlebury, a faculty led internationally touring program grounded in the curriculum.