The Department of Dance offers students rich dance experiences in state-of-the-art facilities, working with faculty who are innovative leaders in performance, choreography, dance scholarship, and teacher training.
The mission of the department is to provide exemplary liberal arts educations for students who desire professional and personal engagement with dance as cultural practice, art form, and interdisciplinary subject. The program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Dance.
The Department of Dance awards a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance. All students receive a well-rounded experience of dance while concentrating in one of two areas: (1) Performance, Choreography, and Theory, or (2) Dance Education with preparation for North Carolina K-12 Fine and Performing Arts, Dance Teacher licensure. The department offers an Advanced Dance Studies certificate for students who want to enrich their BA experience. In partnership with Charlotte’s professional dance company, Charlotte Ballet, the department offers a Professional Training Certificate in Dance for students specializing in ballet performance. Any UNC Charlotte student may audition for this unique two-year certificate program.
Dance degree studies include courses in diverse dance practices, among them: modern dance, ballet, hip hop, jazz, vintage jazz, dance forms from Africa and Latin America, classical Indian dance, improvisation, contact improvisation, choreography, performance, dance history, anatomy, ballet pedagogy, and music and writing for dance. Specialized dance teaching methods, clinical experiences in area schools, and coursework in the College of Education are required for the Concentration in Dance Education. In addition to their Dance concentrations, students fulfill the University’s General Education requirements and can select electives in areas of interest. Specific course requirements and the attendance policy are listed on each course syllabus. All Dance students are formally reviewed in their third semester.
The distinguished faculty provide extraordinary opportunities for students. By audition, students perform in concerts featuring original works by faculty and guest choreographers, as well as re-staged masterworks. In recent years, students have performed choreography by Claudia Lavista, Janet Schroeder, Marcus White, Neta Yerushalmy, Paul Taylor, and Christal Brown. Artists touring Charlotte, such as dancers from The Lion King, Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre conduct master classes on campus. Students gain leadership, choreographic, and performance experience through two student-led groups: Range of Motion, a by-audition company performing commercial dance styles and MOVE, an open access group nurturing choreographers. Internships and study abroad opportunities are available.
Students interested in dance scholarship receive mentoring in research, writing, and oral communication skills and have presented work at university symposia and regional and national conferences. Faculty also nurture student choreographers, who may present their choreography for credit. Careful academic advising supports student success and guides those who want to double major.
UNC Charlotte dance graduates work as performers, choreographers, public school educators, dance studio owners/teachers, and researchers. For some careers, students seek advanced training in graduate programs or apprentice with professional organizations. Some students combine dance degrees with study in exercise science, journalism, psychology, education, communication studies, women’s and gender studies, or business.