About the Dance Department
- Enroll in our Summer Dance Workshop, July 15-19, 2018
- Faculty member Heather Klopchin, and dance alumni Katherine Griffis ’15, Julia Bassett ’17, Betsy Gaasedelen Nelson ’13, Ben Swenson-Klatt ’16, and Karina Culloton ’15, performed with Stuart Pimsler Dance and Theater in Matinee in May 2018.
- Veselica performed at the global Banquet of the ELCA Southeastern Minnesota Synod’s Assembly in Mankato on May 4, 2018. In addition to repertoire from this year’s spring concert, a new Tanzanian dance was premiered at the event, thanks to the opportunity to work with Pastor Emmanuel Kaghondi.
- Faculty member Anne von Bibra performed with Sumunar Gamelan and Dance Ensemble at a joint concert with the University of St. Thomas student gamelan
on May 5, 2018.
- Alum Ben Swenson-Klatt ’16 selected for 2018 New Work Residency for Works in Progress for Center for Performing Arts.
- I Dance, Therefore I Am, an article about Jose Richard Aviles ’13, his work and recent TEDxUSC talk.
The Department of Dance is committed to teaching and presenting dance as a vital form of embodied awareness, understanding, communication, and expression — all of which are central to the liberal arts and fine arts traditions.
Dance students at St. Olaf will find:
- A student-centered, non-competitive program with opportunities for majors and non-majors alike to take classes and audition for all performing companies
- Two performance venues and three beautiful studios with full video, sound, and technology support systems
- Live music for ballet, modern, and improvisation classes
- Emphasis on experiential anatomy and body awareness
- Faculty who have a range of professional dance experience, with strong connections to the vibrant Twin Cities dance community
- One of only two departments in the state that is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Dance
The studies and experiences provided by the Dance Department guide students toward lives and careers with strong physical, creative, and analytical skills at their foundation. Dance majors come away from St. Olaf with the ability to manage, direct, and perform with professional companies or as freelance artists. Some pursue graduate study in dance therapy, teaching, choreography, performance, or the somatic disciplines, while others enter related fields, such as the healing professions, arts management, psychology, environmental studies, and the media.
In short, a degree in Dance from St. Olaf engages students in the study of dance as a personal art, a cultural art, and a fine art, preparing them for a wide range of life and career possibilities.