Students who have spent years training in dance programs often envision a career as a professional dancer. These are children who don’t just love to dance; they must dance. The most elite dance programs in the United States are audition-based Bachelor of Fine Arts conservatory programs, where students receive professional training that meets national standards as established by the National Association of Schools of Dance. There are eighty accredited programs in the United States; though accreditation is voluntary and there are many more dance programs within colleges and universities than are listed on the NASD website. For the most serious dance students, here are five programs in a university setting where a student must audition for entrance and can earn a BFA in dance performance:
·The official school of the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater has partnered with Fordham University to offer a liberal arts education and a BFA degree in dance performance. All dance students take classes at the Lincoln Center Campus.
·Students take a curriculum of classical ballet, Horton and Graham-based modern dance. Performance opportunities are offered among various venues in New York City.
·By the numbers: 43% Fordham University acceptance rate; Mid-range SAT scores: CR 570-670, M 580-670; ACT mid-range 26-30.
·The College of Performing Arts offers a BA in Dance, where all dance majors begin. In junior year a BFA in Dance Performance is offered to selected students who audition in the spring of their sophomore year.
·Students achieve competency in ballet, jazz, and modern technique along with experience in choreography, performance, production, dance science, and teaching.
·By the numbers: 45% overall acceptance rate; Mid-range SAT scores: CR 550-640, M 570-660; Mid range ACT 24-29.
·The dance program offers four levels of dance in ballet, modern, and jazz, and two levels of tap; also offered are hip hop and instruction in world dance technique. Juniors must declare a major concentration in either jazz or modern.
·sjDANCEco is the resident SJSU professional dance company, where students are taught and mentored by the founding members of the company.
·By the numbers: 64% overall acceptance rate; Mid-range SAT scores: CR 430-560, M 450-600; ACT Mid-range 19-26.
·The BFA in Dance Performance at the Meadows School of the Arts requires a minimum of 38 hours of studio training in ballet, jazz and modern dance, with a concentration in one area declared for junior and senior year.
·The Division of Dance at SMU collaborates with professional dance organizations TITAS and Texas Ballet Theater to forge relationships between dance students and working dance professionals.
·By the numbers: 51% overall acceptance rate; Mid-range SAT scores: CR 600-690, M 620-700; ACT Mid-range: 27-31.