Courses

For the college’s course catalog, please visit the Courses section. For courses currently offered, please visit the Schedule of Classes.

African/Diasporan Dance I (DANC-122)
African/Diasporan Dance I focuses on African-centered forms of dance in one of many possible genres across the African Diaspora (e.g., traditional African forms, dances of the African Diaspora, African American vernacular, Hip-Hop, Contemporary African, etc.). Taught from a cultural perspective, this course emphasizes fundamentals such as fluidity, use of the head, spine and pelvis, grounded and weighted qualities, isolations and complex embodied rhythms. Concert attendance, short written critical responses and weekly written journals are examples of outside work that is required. Cross-listed with Black Studies. No previous dance experience is expected.
Modern/Postmodern Dance I (DANC-132)
Modern/Postmodern Dance I is designed for students with no dance experience. Offering an introduction to basic movement ideas, classes are structured with initial floor warmup sequences, followed by standing exercises and phrase work. Students will be challenged with selfawareness while moving and to develop a basic understanding of and sensitivity to dynamics, phrasing, gravity and weight, and to become attentive to their own movement potential. Exercises emphasizing placement, flexibility and strength are taught. Attention to the body, breath, momentum and the use of gravity for efficiency is emphasized and improvisation is introduced. In addition to movement work, class time may include video viewings of moments in modern dance history, short readings, creative movement projects and quizzes. Concert attendance, short written critical responses, and short composition assignments are examples of outside work that is required.
Understanding Dance as an Art Form (DANC-174)
Understanding Dance as an Art Form is open to students with an interest in dance in practice and in theory. It serves to introduce students to the many sub-disciplines and theoretical approaches in the field of dance. No dance experience is necessary. Students will sample modern/postmodern, African/Diasporan dance, and other forms dependent on the guest artists areas of expertise in a handful of master classes while considering dance as a socio-cultural mode of expression within a fine arts agenda. Field trips to live concerts will be included and are required as "texts" for this course. Students should be prepared to commit to 2-4 field trips over the course of the semester. (Not offered 2013-2014)
Special Topics in Dance (DANC-194)
Introductory Topics in Dance (DANC-199)
A general category used only in the evaluation of transfer credit.
Seminar in Production (DANC-210)
Seminar in Production focuses on many aspects of dance concert production. Topics covered include budgeting, marketing, graphic design, costume design/construction, lighting design for dance, box office and house management, video documentation, scheduling and backstage production. Professionals/faculty will make presentations in the various subfields. Students will collaborate in the production of major department-sponsored events. Limited readings are assigned. A portfolio of completed work is required.
Performance Workshop (DANC-211)
The technical aspects of producing a concert are applied through practical experience. Performance space preparation, generally termed the "load-in" (hanging lights, laying the floor and building audience space) and the designing of lights, costumes, and publicity are taught or deepened by means of application. Students are awarded credit based on the number of hours of involvement. Students with Seminar in Production (DANC 210) or similar appropriate training or experience will be given preference in this course.
African/Diasporan Dance II (DANC-222)
African/Diasporan Dance II focuses on African-centered forms of dance in one of many possible genres across the African Diaspora (e.g., traditional African forms, dances of the African Diaspora, Hip-Hop, African American vernacular, contemporary African, etc.). Taught from a cultural perspective, this course deepens exposure to fundatmentals and aesthetics with complex phrasing and multi-laytered movement. Emphasis is placed on fluidity, use of the head, spine, and pelvis, grounded and weighted qualities, isolations and complex embodied rhythms. Limited work outside the classroom is required. Examples include concert attendance, focused relative research inquiries, weekly journal writing, and video essays. Cross-listed with Black Studies 222. Level II is only open to students with previous dance experience in any genre.
Modern/Postmodern Dance II (DANC-232)
Modern/Postmodern Dance II is designed for students with a sound background in dance training and a general understanding of placement and basic dance movements. Classes are structured with initial floor warm-up sequences, followed by standing exercises and phrase work. Students will be challenged with self-awareness while moving and to develop a basic understanding of and sensitivity to focus, dynamics, phrasing, gravity and weight, and distinct movement qualities, and to become attentive to their own movement potential. A focus on flow, spherical space and the ability to move in and out of the floor will be integral to this class, as will clarity and efficiency of movement. Limited work outside the classroom is required. Examples include concert attendance, focused historic/cultural research inquiries, weekly journal writing, and video essays. Level II is only open to students with previous dance experience in any genre.
Cultural Studies (DANC-274)
We will frame Western concert dance as a complex political activity made public through various agendas of race, creed, national origin, sexuality, and gender. Students may simultaneously be exposed to poststructuralist epistemology, feminist theory, and power & justice ideology while they are meeting a survey of historical works. In this way, the course is less about coming to know a canon of "masterworks" and more about learning how to interrogate dance in many cultures from multiple perspectives. Students will be expected to engage in movement activities as a method toward an embodied understanding of theory, but will not be evaluated on their movement performance or ability. No dance experience necessary. May be cross-listed with Women's Studies, Black Studies and/or Queer Studies.
Choreographic Investigations (DANC-284)
This course focuses on the regular creation and presentation of assigned short movement studies that focus on principles of dance composition for the concert stage. Through solo, duet and group forms students learn about the compositional elements of space, time, dynamics, flow and shape, discover their own unique movement style, become familiar with how the body works and how it can be expressive, and expand their own definitions of dance. Three fundamental aspects of creative work in movement will be emphasized: movement invention, compositional structure, and creating meaning. A desire to take risks and be transformed, a willingness to use the body as an expressive tool, an eagerness to learn, and willingness to question personal choices are essential for success in this class. An interest, ability and a desire to be physically challenged to work toward expressive clarity in movement, is assumed. Pre-requisite: 100 level movement course.
African Movement Aesthetics (DANC-285)
This course engages characteristics and values of African movement to investigate compositional structure. Through various exercises and assignments, students examine concepts such as: balance, walking, masking, rhythm, repetition, improvisation, standing and sitting as tools for composing. Students investigate the manipulation of space, time and energy, and create source material from personal movement exploration, structured improvisation, master classes, and guided exercises. Other course tools include videos, journals, art and community feedback. Ultimately, the course aims to resource the aesthetics of African movement (kinesthetic, philosophical, linear and nonlinear) as methods for composing solo, duet, and group work. Prerequisite: Any 100 level or above movement course or permission of instructor.
Improvisation in Performance (DANC-286)
Improvisation in Performance focuses on the act of spontaneous choreography and composition though solo and ensemble work with the goal of understanding and experiencing improvisation in performance work. Students learn Ensemble Thinking techniques and are exposed to Contact Improvisation. Texts include performances in theatre and dance both here and in Columbus, as well as selected readings. Students discover, through these, what artists and scholars consider to be the perimeters of performance, the definition of improvisation, and the unique potential of movement. Through a consistent practice, students fine-tune their own ideas about these and work to discover their own movement preferences and capabilities. Students risk the act of moving, revealing, performing, and improvising. The semester culminates in an improvised performance work developed by the class. Pre-requisite: Any 100 level or above movement course or permission of instructor. (Not offered 2013-2014)
Site-Based Composition (DANC-287)
In this course, students study and research composition for the human body in relation to its environment, placing and shaping the body in juxtaposition or in relation to specific and chosen spaces. We study site-based performance works by contemporary artists and learn about the issues surrounding this kind of work. The underlying principles of this course are the formal elements that inform the aesthetics of composition, noticing how these basic compositional elements create tension, drama and meaning and can point to content that is inherent in the form and in relation to the environment. The final project is the creation of a site-based movement/performance work in a chosen site in the Denison Community/Granville Village area that is presented at the end of the semester. An interest in and curiosity about the body as the subject of creative work is essential. Pre-requisite: Any 100 level or above movement course or permission of instructor. (Not offered 2013-2014)
Text/Voice-based Composition (DANC-288)
This course engages text, voice, and theatrical material to investigate dance making and performance. Students explore words, poetry, music and sound to craft and support movement. Through various exercises and assignments, the course examines motifs such as: speaking while moving; chanting while moving; words into movement; and words as music as methods for composing. Work outside the classroom is required. Examples include concert attendance, creative writing, weekly journal writing, and video essays. Ultimately, the course aims to overlap the boundaries of theatre and dance to explore movement composition. Prerequisite: Any 100 level or above movement course or permission of instructor. (Not offered 2013-2014)
Special Topics in Dance (DANC-294)
From time to time, according to the expertise of the faculty and the interest of the students, special courses that can address intensive study are arranged and offered. This course can be taken more than once for credit. Courses recently offered are Dance/Draw, Contact Improvisation, Music for Dance, Creative Collaboration in the Arts, Modernism Re-Composed, and "Music/Movement/Interaction." Whether this course substitutes in the major or minor for an "area study," and if so for which one, depends on the topic. Generally, these courses will fulfill a major or minor requirement
Intermediate Topics in Dance (DANC-299)
A general category used only in the evaluation of transfer credit.
African/Diasporan Dance III (DANC-322)
African/Diasporan Dance III focuses on African-centered forms of dance in one of many possible genres across the African Diaspora (e.g., traditional African forms, dances of the African Diaspora, African American vernacular, Hip-Hop, contemporary African, etc.). Taught from a cultural perspective, it is designed for students with significant experiences in African/Diasporan dance technique. This course approaches technique holistically and provides students with the rigorous practice required for performance. Emphasis is placed on fluidity, use of the head, spine, and pelvis, grounded and weighted qualities, isolations, and understanding or complex embodied rhythms. Because this course meets approximately 6 hours per week, little outside work is required. Cross-listed with Black Studies 327. Permission of instructor required.
Modern/Postmodern Dance III (DANC-332)
Modern/Postmodern Dance III is designed for students with significant experience in modern, postmodern, or contemporary dance training. This course provides the student with the rigorous training required for performance, demands an attitude that anticipates professionalism, and will continue to develop strength, flexibility, endurance, and sensitivity to gravity, momentum and phrasing. A willingness to think broadly about movement, to be open to new perspectives and possibilities and to take risks and be fully engaged without knowing exactly what you are doing will be essential and encouraged. This class will focus on process and will ask students to consider how they move and why. Students will be challenged to discover their own movement potential and methods for accomplishing physical tasks. Permission of instructor required.
Directed Study (DANC-361)
Individual pursuits in (1) composition/improvisation/choreography, (2) history/cultural studies/criticism, (3) somatics/systems of movement re-education, or (4) movement analysis/reconstruction, under the supervision of a faculty member. Only those students who have had the initial coursework in that pursuit may apply.
Directed Study (DANC-362)
Individual pursuits in (1) composition/improvisation/choreography, (2) history/cultural studies/criticism, (3) somatics/systems of movement re-education, or (4) movement analysis/reconstruction, under the supervision of a faculty member. Only those students who have had the initial coursework in that pursuit may apply.
Independent Study (DANC-363)
Independent Study (DANC-364)
Somatics I (DANC-374)
Through various approaches to learning (memorizing factual information, sharing personal body-centered stories, drawing evocative and descriptive images, and moving through guided developmental movement explorations), students are introduced to anatomy and kinesiology in their own bodies. The course materials approach the body primarily from a first-person stance through different kinds of movement activities in relation to reflexes and developmental material through skeletal, muscular, and neurological systems. Students are required to keep weekly journals, work in small study groups in and out of class, and create a series of personal bodywork sessions for themselves to illustrate their command of anatomical and kinesiological terminology and reasoning based on the principles of basic neurological patterns.
Somatics II (DANC-375)
This course will guide students on an extended journey deep into their own somatic experiences. The course materials are designed each time this course is offered to employ various somatic practices centered on individual movement challenges. Students are required to keep weekly journals, work in semi-private explorations both in and out of class, and create a series of personal bodywork sessions for themselves to illustrate their progress. Prerequisite: Dance 374.
Laban Movement Analysis (DANC-384)
Students explore aspects of Effort, Shape, Space, and Body as defined in the Laban tradition. Materials focus on observing, analyzing, and recording any kind of human movement practice. All students should expect to create movement studies and to motif their work as part of this inquiry. Interest in creating and observing qualities of movement practice is essential. Dance experience is helpful, but not required.
Labanotation (DANC-385)
Students explore aspects of Direction, Level, Timing, and Part of the Body Moving as defined in the Laban tradition. Students should expect to read movement studies from several different dance genres, including folk, ballet, modern, and postmodern dance in Western and non-western traditions. Short movement studies will be recorded. Those wishing may take the International Elementary and/or Intermediate Certification exam at the conclusion of this course. Previous dance experience is certainly helpful, but not required.
Reconstruction (DANC-386)
This course functions like a performance course, reconstructing dance movement from a score for inclusion in a public performance. The 4-credit course is distinguished from a 2-credit performance course in that students will be not necessarily perform, but will be responsible for the reconstruction of the choreography. They will meet for the standard 4 hours per week (56 contact hours) as well as be responsible 4 hours/week in rehearsal with other student dancers and work 4 hours/week on assignments. The 168 hours (56 contact hours with the advisor, 56 out-of-class hours, and 56 hours with peer rehearsing) will also be "loaded" into Weeks #2-#10 of the semester, allowing the course to end before the semester concludes. The work can be performed publicly only with permission of the copyright holder of the dance.
Special Topics in Dance (DANC-394)
From time to time, according to the expertise of the faculty and the interest of the students, special courses that can address intensive study will be arranged and offered. This course can be taken more than once for credit. Courses recently offered are Contact Improvisation, Music for Dance and Creative Collaboration in the Arts.
Advanced Topics in Dance (DANC-399)
A general category used only in the evaluation of transfer credit.
Performance: African/Diasporan (DANC-422)
New and reconstructed works choreographed by faculty and guest artists in African/Diasporan dance are learned by students and rehearsed for public performance. Participation can include attending biweekly company classes and contributing to the production of the performance. Differences in course number refer to genres of performance work. By audition or invitation only; auditions are typically held during the first two weeks of each semester or immediately preceding a short residency by a guest artist. Cross-listed with Black Studies 422.
Performance: African/Diasporan (Student) (DANC-424)
Participation as a cast member in the choreographic research process of new and reconstructed works in African/Diasporan forms created by students who have completed adequate choreographic studies coursework. Student participants learn and rehearse these student-generated projects for public performance. The project is supervised by faculty. Enrollment is by audition or invitation only. Auditions are arranged by the student choreographer, often during the first two weeks of each semester.
Performance: Modern/Postmodern (DANC-432)
New and reconstructed works choreographed by faculty and guest artists in modern/postmodern dance are learned by students and rehearsed for public performance. Participation can include attending biweekly company classes and contributing to the production of performance. Differences in course number refer to genres of performance work. By audition or invitation only; auditions are typically held during the first two weeks of each semester or immediately preceding a short residency by a guest artist.
Performance: Modern/Postmodern (Student) (DANC-434)
Participation as a cast member in the choreographic research process of new and reconstructed works in Modern/Postmodern forms created by students who have completed adequate choreographic studies coursework. Student participants learn and rehearse these student generated projects for public performance. The project is supervised by faculty. Enrollment is by audition or invitation only. Auditions are arranged by the student choreographer, often during the first two weeks of each semester.
Performance: Ballet (DANC-442)
New and reconstructed works choreographed by faculty and guest artists in ballet are learned by students and rehearsed for public performance. Participation can include attending biweekly company classes and contributing to the production of the performance. Differences in course number refer to genres of performance work. By audition or invitation only; auditions are typically held during the first two weeks of each semester or immediately preceding a short residency by a guest artist.
Performance: Ballet (Student) (DANC-444)
Participation as a cast member in the choreographic research process of new and reconstructed works in Ballet forms created by students who have completed adequate choreographic studies coursework. Student participants learn and rehearse these student-generated projects for public performance. The project is supervised by faculty. Enrollment is by audition or invitation only. Auditions are arranged by the student choreographer, often during the first two weeks of each semester.
Senior Research (DANC-451)
This course, offered every fall, is designed to address the research and methodological needs of all senior dance majors and those minors choosing to undertake independent research in this or another department. The integration of movement and analytical course work through the intensive examination of a specific interest is the foundation for the senior dance major's own research. This investigation includes methodologies from books like Researching Dance by Hanstein and Fraleigh and Contemporary Choreography by Butterworth and Wildschut. This investigation, serving as preparation for DANC-452, is closely guided by the faculty. All students in the course conclude by writing a substantial prospectus or grant proposal including a focused artist or research statement and review of the relevant literature. All majors are required to take both semesters of Senior Research (DANC-451 and DANC-452).
Senior Research (DANC-452)
This course, offered every spring, is required of all dance majors. This course focuses on the completion of a senior research project and integrates movement and analytical course work through the intensive examination of a specific interest. This course is the foundation for the senior dance major's own research. During the course of the semester's work, each student will write up a significant dance research experiment, produce several excerpts of historical works in concert, create and produce an original choreographic work, or comment on a period in dance's history or a sociological movement in dance, or the like. The resultant document/performance will be presented publicly for an identified audience in partial fulfillment of the degree requirements. Prerequisite: Dance 451. Open to dance majors only.