Dance Performance Opportunities
We provide students with unique opportunities to perform every semester:
- Dance majors are encouraged and given support to self-produce shows, such as BFA dance major Kayla Wegley's production, "Alterity" and Alex Olesen's "Boundless." Self-production provides space for student dancers to perform new works of choreography, learn stage production skills like lighting design and sound board operation, and foster experience in organizing all aspects of a professional performance -- from securing funding to front-of-house management. The Elizabeth Sherbon Black-Box Theater in the Robinson Center hosts student-produced shows every semester.
- The University Dance Company is a pre-professional performance ensemble, accepting members by audition only. Students rehearse approximately four hours a week per piece for three months prior to the performance. Dancers perform at the Lied Center of Kansas, one of the most prestigious performing arts venues in the country, in the fall and the Lawrence Arts Center in the spring. University Dance Company members perform in works choreographed by visiting guest artists each semester, in addition to faculty and alumni works.
- The Department annually offers students Chicago Career Week, an immersive week-long program that connects them with nationally recognized choreographers, instructors, and dancers. KU dance alumni who are currently dancing professionally in Chicago assist with hosting and introducing students to the Chicago dance scene.
- UNITY Hip Hop (Facebook link) is a student organization and performing group at the University of Kansas. UNITY holds auditions for membership, rehearses weekly and performs throughout Kansas. They also attend conventions like Monsters of Hip Hop. The group is governed by student-elected officers.
- Senior Showcases are venues at the end of each semester for student work. Choreographic studies and senior projects are featured in these concerts, as well as work by student dance groups. Artists from other disciplines such as theater, music, or visual arts are also encouraged to submit work. Those interested in being part of the Senior Showcase program should audition the piece at least one month in advance of the performance dates each semester.
- Dancers also often have professional opportunities. Faculty members develop new works on the members of the University Dance Company, which often tour to professional venues regionally and nationally. Students are also encouraged to participate in various local and regional dance events, as well as experiencing opportunities to perform in School of Music and University Theatre productions on campus.