Each year, the Dance program stages two large-scale performances. Each Fall, this production is State of LA Danse, which features pieces choreographed by faculty members and guest artists. You will have the opportunity to perform with professionals in the dance world and make connections that can help you break into the professional arena. A sample of previous guest choreographers includes:
- Blakeley White-McGuire (principal dancer with the Martha Graham company)
- Clarice Young (dancer and rehearsal director with Ronald K. Brown/EVIDENCE, A Dance Company)
- CoCo Loupe
- Matthew Couvillon
- Jawole Willa Jo Zollar of Urban Bush Women
- Clay Taliaferro
Faculty have also restaged significant pieces from Dance history, including both ballet and modern works. Past restagings include:
- Selections from Swan Lake
- Selections from Giselle
- Pas de Quatre
- Selections from Paquita
- Work by Charles Weidman (by special arrangement with the Dance Notation Bureau)
- Work by Greg Halloran (by special arrangement with the Dance Notation Bureau)
- Works by Doris Humphrey (by special arrangement with the Dance Notation Bureau)
The Spring production is An Evening of Dance, featuring pieces choreographed and developed by current Dance students. As a student choreographer, you will hold auditions, cast dancers, and rehearse your piece, before faculty and outside artists select the finest pieces to be included in the concert. Working on An Evening of Dance gives you the opportunity to work on fresh new pieces or develop your skills as a choreographer (and sometimes both within the same production).
Additional Performance Opportunities
You will also have additional performance and production opportunities available to during the school year. Dancers work on productions with the Music program, including opera production and live music performances.
Dance students and faculty often collaborate on new and interesting projects, such as ArTECH fusion, an evening the features a wide array of projects highlighting the ways that creative artists can use technology to further their visions. Past ArTECH fusion projects include Oiseaux Tristes, a dance piece incorporating live piano accompaniment and video animation; 15 Scores, a piece developed through web conferencing technology to connect the choreographer and the cast; and L’eau de Danse, a piece that integrated live dance, live music and sculptural elements into a site-specific piece.
Dance students also frequently have the opportunity to take master classes with professional artists who visit the Lafayette area. Past master class artists include:
- Ronald K. Brown/Evidence, A Dance Company
- Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre
- Parsons Dance Company
- Elisa Monte Dance Company
- Rioult Dance NY
- Blakely White-McGuire
- Houston Metropolitan Dance Company
- Ballet Memphis
Getting Involved in Performances
If you’re a Performing Arts major in the Dance concentration, you are required to audition for all pieces to be included in the main stage Dance production each semester unless specifically released from this requirement by the faculty. If you’re a major and are cast in a piece, you are required to accept the role(s) offered to you. Of course, auditions are open to everyone—Dance minors, UL Lafayette students not currently participating in Dance courses, and community members.
Most rehearsals take place in the evenings and on weekends, so it is important that you keep those times as free as possible during the semester. Regardless of your status as a major, minor, or interested student, all cast members are expected to abide by professional standards of conduct. This means that attendance at rehearsal is required, with all members of a cast arriving on time, in appropriate dress, and ready to work.