An Overview of the Dance Department

In the Department of Dance, we focus on technical training, choreography, and performance. All students take two technique classes daily, one each in ballet and contemporary dance. We also offer pointe, partnering, Pilates, and yoga. All students study dance composition, whether of not they intend to concentrate on choreography. We present approximately thirty five performances a year, offering every student frequent opportunities to perform and choreograph. Additional workshops and master classes are offered throughout the year.

Students in their final year (both BFA and MFA) participate in the Second Avenue Dance Company, a repertory ensemble which functions as nearly as possible to a professional company. Students have the opportunity to audition for and perform in work by such major artists as Martha Graham, Paul Taylor, Twyla Tharp, William Forsythe, and Bill T. Jones, to name only a few. The Second Avenue Dance Company also serves as a laboratory for student choreography.

A typical day for first-year students begins at 8:15 a.m. with a Pilates mat-work class, followed by a ballet class and a contemporary technique class. Academic courses may be scheduled between 12:30 and 3:30p.m. Other departmental courses (music, acting, dance composition, repertory workshops, etc.) are scheduled between 3:30 and 6:30p.m. Evenings are reserved for rehearsals and performances.

The faculty meets regularly to discuss individual student needs and progress, class planning, and program development. Each student receives written evaluations for each class at regular intervals. Student/faculty conferences are encouraged. Students who do not meet the standards of the department, either through insufficient participation of failure to fulfill professional promise, will be asked to withdraw.*


*Source: Tisch School of the Arts at NYU website,