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.
Our mission is to contribute innovation and leadership to the field through creative/scholarly research, teaching, service, and community engagement. Through comprehensive, innovative courses, we provide our diverse student body with an exemplary liberal arts education grounded in dance as a cultural practice, art form, and interdisciplinary subject. We embrace and celebrate dance as a way of learning about ourselves and the world around us. Committed to access, equity and inclusion, the dance program develops artists, educators, scholars, and arts-literate citizens who thrive in complex global environments and make sustained contributions to their communities.
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 . A Minor in Dance is also available. Additionally, 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, vintage jazz, dance forms from Africa and Latin America, 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. All Dance students create a portfolio that furthers their learning on campus and serves as the basis for a professional portfolio upon graduation. In addition to taking core courses in 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.
The unique research interests, expertise, and professional connections of our 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 Christal Brown, George Faison, and Martha Graham. A major National Science Foundation grant allowed students to join in groundbreaking research in dance and technology. Artists touring Charlotte, such as dancers from The Lion King, Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, and Parsons Dance, conduct master classes on campus.
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 on stage 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.