Undergraduate Degree & Course Catalog

Dance - About The Program

About Our Degrees

Acceptance Criteria
Audition and University Acceptance.
Minimum GPA of 2.0 overall.
Minimum GPA of 2.5 in the following prerequisite courses: TH 106; TH 135 or TH 136; THD 202, THD 214, THD 264.
Minimum grade of C+ in all required courses.

Acceptance Information
Number of applicants/year: 130 (majors)
Number of accepted majors/year: 25-28
Total number of majors currently enrolled: 95

Degree Requirements
Please see Degrees and Policies.

About Our Facilities

University at Buffalo's Theatre & Dance department utilizes three performance spaces including a flexible black box theatre and two distinct performance venues. With a rehearsal workshop space, numerous dance studios, scene and costume shops, a craft room and a design suite, UB boasts an array of resources for both classroom training and practical preparation for productions.

The Center for the Arts (CFA) benefits UB students who use its outstanding public performance and exhibition facilities. Within the CFA, students from the Department of Theatre & Dance directly benefit from the use of:
  • The Drama Theatre: a 388-seat theatre that is the venue for most of our fully produced shows, from large-scale dramas to Broadway musicals to performances by Zodiaque, the department's dance company.
  • The Black Box Theatre: a flexible space that can be configured in a variety of ways with seating of 100-120. This is where the department produces and supports several smaller-scale productions and workshops each season in this flexible black box theatre.
  • Rehearsal Workshop: a mirror image of the Black Box Theatre, our rehearsal workshop is used for acting classes and as a rehearsal room for departmental productions
  • Dance Studios: two spacious studios used for classes and rehearsals. Dance studios are spacious with Marley covered maple wood floors engineered for maximum resiliency, twelve-foot mirrors, upper-level observation spaces, and specially designed sound systems.
  • Scene Shop
  • Costume Shop
  • Craft Studio
Students also use the Katherine Cornell Theatre (KCT), a flexible performance space housed in the Ellicott Complex on UB's North Campus. This space functions as a rehearsal space, performance space, and the Graduate Student Studio. Theatre majors are eligible to apply to use the space for original student-created shows with generous financial support from THD alumni.

Alumni Arena, adjacent to the Center for the Arts, also includes:
  • The Design Suite, which includes a drafting studio, lighting lab and a ten-seat computer lab with design software, including Vectorworks, WYSIWIG, and Adobe Photoshop
  • Two additional classroom and rehearsal spaces
  • A departmentally run seminar room for lectures
  • Department and Faculty Offices
Locally, the students of Theatre & Dance enjoy a working relationship with Alleyway Theatre, Artpark, Buffalo United Artists, Irish Classical Theatre Co., Buffalo City Ballet, Buffalo Contemporary Dance Co., LeherDance, MusicalFare, Shakespeare in Delaware Park, Theatre of Youth, and Western New York affiliated Dance Masters of America dance establishments.

About Our Courses

Suggested Introductory Courses:

The typical class size for:

Freshman/introduction courses is: 25-30
Sophomore/intermediate courses is: 15-30
Upper level/advanced courses is: 15-20

In the Dance program, what do teaching assistants (TAs) do?

They serve as demonstrators and generally assist in the studio classes receiving practical experience in structuring a class under continual supervision from the faculty member.

For course descriptions, please see Courses.

About Our Faculty

The dance faculty's eclectic professional backgrounds steeped in traditional and contemporary dance forms reflect this unique program and the dance pulse of the 21st century. The dance faculty is intensely involved in a wide range of dance and theatre-related activities extending beyond the campus, including:
  • American College Dance Festival Association
  • Joffrey Ballet
  • National Dance Education Organization/NYSDEA
  • Dance Masters of America
  • Chicago National Association of Dance Masters
  • Dance Teachers' Club of Boston
  • Dace StudioLife Magazine and Conferences
  • Dance Kinesiology Teachers' Group
  • International Association of Dance Medicine and Science
  • American Dance Guild
  • Congress on Research and Dance
  • Irish Classical Theatre
  • Lehrerdance
  • Moving Miracles
  • Shakespeare in Delaware Park
  • master classes and workshops across the country and abroad.
The faculty's multifaceted activities have won the program widespread recognition.

The UB Center for the Arts is the home of the National Dance Masters of America Teachers' Training School (TTS) and Student Honors Intensive Program (SHIP), and has the distinct honor of having hosted the Jazz Dance World Congress for an unprecedented three years: 1999, 2000, and 2003.

Please visit our department website for additional information about our faculty.

Practical Experience and Special Academic Opportunities

Notable Program Features

Unique to the program are offerings in comparative jazz styles and techniques. Additional offerings include: dance kinesiology, improvisation, music theatre dance, social dance, male dancer, partnering, Laban Movement Analysis, mind-body integration, creative movement, and internships in dance. This broad course of study combined with strong interdisciplinary general education requirements cultivate resourceful and informed artists that successfully pursue graduate study and/or work in the areas of concert dance, commercial dance, private sector and K-12 dance education, higher education, and dance journalism.

The Dance Program provides numerous performance opportunities for students to showcase performance and choreography in the Center for the Arts' state of the art facilities. There are two student dance companies. Zodiaque Dance Company is the resident dance company at UB, presenting a main stage production each semester. Its companion company, Zodiaque Dance Ensemble, presents an annual spring concert. Both companies are also involved in special university and community projects from industrial styled performances to private and public out-reach performances. Eligible juniors and seniors present inventive, risk-taking choreography in Emerging Choreographers Showcase, mentored by the diverse faculty. In addition, Dancers Workshop, a student directed performance venue showcases the emerging voices of all dance students.

Students may shape the courses that complete the requirements for the B.A. major by following sequences in such areas as general dance studies, music theatre, dance performance, theatre performance, choreography, design/technology, dance education, playwriting, directing, history, and literature.

Active professional teacher/artists along with established residencies and guest artists enhance the UB educational process by providing valuable networking opportunities for graduating students. Past residencies have included:
  • River North
  • Taylor II
  • Urban Bush Women
  • Jump Rhythm Jazz Project
  • Limon
  • Bill T. Jones
  • Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago
  • American Ballet Theatre Studio Company and Doug Varone and Dancers
World Dance residencies have included:
  • Eager Artists, South Africa
  • Jagdish Gangani, India
  • Sohn Young, Korea
  • Master dance classes with David Parsons, Philadanco, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Rennie Harris Puremovement, Suzanne Farrell, UB Alumni, and tap greats Robert Reed and the late Honi Coles.
Each year the UB Center for the Arts, the home of the Department of Theatre & Dance offers a world renowned dance series which includes the listed residencies and other notables such as Garth Fagan Dance, The Joffrey Ensemble, Ballet Hispanico, Martha Graham Ensemble, Le Ballet National du Senegal, River Dance, Tap Dogs, Savion Glover, and others.

Undergraduate Research and Practical Experience

Internships in dance teaching are available. The Department of Theatre & Dance encourages students to seek out this opportunity, and expects it of majors. Qualified dance majors interested in dance education are invited to participate in "Bridging Communities through Dance" an outreach project linking UB Dance and the Buffalo City School District; students wishing to pursue careers in dance movement therapy may intern with Moving Miracles Dance Studio, a dance/movement program for children, adolescents, and adults who are exceptionally challenged mentally, physically and/or emotionally, which places qualified dance majors in teaching residencies; students interested in somatic practices may apply for internships with Northstar Pilates and Ultra Barre Certification, offered as summer study.

Honors, Awards, and Scholarships
  • Amanda C. Occhino Award
  • Elizabeth Webb Dance Foundation
  • College of Arts and Sciences Dean's Department Award
  • College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Senior Award
  • Departmental Honors
  • Jean Taylor Bear Foundation Award, granted to upper class dance majors for excellence in dance and for guest choreographers to create original dance works for the UB dance companies
  • LehrerDance Observership, offered to a senior and allows them to work closely with the professional dance company in their senior year
  • Performing and Creative Arts Scholarships
  • SUNY Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence
The Perry Watkins scholarship is available to African American freshman students majoring in design/technology. Presidential Gala Scholarship for Dance, granted to an incoming dance major. Auditions, portfolios, and a personal interview are required for all scholarship students.

Extracurricular Activities

The principle performing spaces for all of the following are the theatres and studios in the Center for the Arts. See the Center for the Arts website.

Dancers Workshop
Dancers Workshop is a student organization that offers non-credit performing and related opportunities to the university community at various levels of ability and interest. Workshop advisers are members of the dance faculty.

Digital Poetry and Dance
Digital Poetry and Dance explores the intersection of dance, poetry, and technology in a Black Box production mentored by Dance and Media Studies faculty.

From the Wings
From the Wings is a student organization that offers non-credit performance opportunities primarily, but not exclusively to music theatre majors. Faculty advisors are members of the music theatre faculty.

The Guild
The Guild is managed entirely by students. It hosts opening night receptions, is the liaison among department faculty, staff, and students, and produces evenings of new works by students.

Emerging Choreographers Showcase
Emerging Choreographers Showcase is faculty directed/mentored. Advanced-level student choreographers are invited by the faculty to present concerts of their works.

Zodiaque Dance Company
The Zodiaque Dance Company is a performance training company that requires a major time commitment. Membership for the year is by audition early each fall.

Zodiaque Studio Dance Ensemble
The Ensemble is a performance training company with a fall semester commitment.

See the UB Student Association.

Complementary Programs and Courses

Majors that Complement Dance

Minors that Complement Dance

Courses Outside the Major that Could Improve Employment Opportunities

Links to Further Information About this Program

Last updated: February 22 2022 21:08:39