Students receive training through the advanced level of modern dance technique and additionally take 2-3 semesters of dance composition as well as study in dance history, dance pedagogy, dance kinesiology and music. Each year students have many opportunities to perform on and off-campus, including at the American College Dance Festival regional conferences, on a semi-annual tour though the northeast and at other venues. Students have the opportunity to teach modern dance in local high schools, at after-school programs for high-risk youth and at other outreach programs. Students have also had the opportunity to perform with internationally known dance companies through short and long-term residencies, including Troika Ranch, Diavolo, AXIS and Heidi Latsky Dance Company's Gimp.
Since this major focuses on the specific skills required to learn, retain, and perform dance, students who earn this degree are very marketable in dance-related professions. In recent years, students have joined dance companies, including Xenon Dance in Minneapolis and Cleo Parker Robinson in Denver. In fact, upon graduation, increasing numbers of dance students are gravitating towards performance careers, more so than in the past. Several have started their own dance studios while others have become leaders at existing studios.
In our small program, students receive very personal attention from faculty and many opportunities to perform locally, regionally, nationally and even internationally. For example, as part of the UNL School of Music Opera Program, four dancers traveled to Ireland to perform in "Most Happy Fella," which won first prize in the Waterford International Festival of Light Opera. Students are given a voice in the development of curriculum, selection of guest artists and other decisions. Students also have funded research opportunities through the UCARE program.
Associate Professor Susan Levine is the head of the program and she brings many years of dance and choreography experience to the students.
Classes are held in our huge, dedicated space with occasional classes also taking place at the local performing arts center's black box theatre.