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Dance, Bachelor's

Overview

Learn to express yourself as a diverse and informed artist through dance at DeSales.

The Dance Department at DeSales develops the individual artist and empowers students to use the medium of dance to speak with integrity.

As a dance major, you'll discover that in our training theory and practical application intersect throughout the curriculum in a nurturing environment.

Work with innovative dance professionals 

  • Our distinguished dance faculty are complemented by professional choreographers and guest artists from New York, Philadelphia, and beyond who teach diverse weekly master classes or set choreography for the stage.
  • Students have several opportunities to perform and choreograph each semester. The highlight of our production season is our annual Dance Ensemble Concert, featuring faculty and guest artist work. Recent guest artists have included Matthew Neenan, Caili Quan, and Bennyroyce Royon.
  • Our restaging of established repertoire allows our students to embody and appreciate the rich tradition of the art form through works by Ronald K. Brown, Martha Graham, José Limón, Donald McKayle, and Paul Taylor.
dance program

Admissions Requirements

At DeSales, we not only look at your past academic and artistic achievement, but also your potential for future growth to determine your admission.

As a performing arts candidate you must apply and be accepted both academically to DeSales University and artistically to the major.

Academic Acceptance
We encourage you to apply early in your senior year. We use a rolling admissions system, which means you will be notified promptly about your admissions status—usually within four weeks of our receipt of your completed application.

Priority deadline for scholarship consideration is December 1 of your senior year.

We find that students who have demonstrated significant achievement within a demanding curriculum are best suited for academic life at DeSales. Quality of academic performance plays a critical role in the admissions decision making process. This helps indicate a student's potential for academic growth going forward. DeSales University welcomes applications from all qualified students regardless of race, religion, sex, national, or ethnic origin.

Apply Academically 

Artistic Acceptance
To be accepted artistically into a performing arts major, you must audition/interview for our faculty during our annual Scholarship Audition/Interview Day(s) hosted on the DeSales campus.

Apply Artistically 

Application Checklist

  • Application Fee: None
  • Transcripts: Official High School Transcript
  • Recommendations: Completed Guidance Counselor Form and Teacher Recommendation Form
  • Standardized Tests: This program is SAT optional.

Students applying SAT Optional are required to complete an SAT Optional Interview. You can schedule your interview online at desales.edu/visit, or by calling the Admissions office at 610-282-1100 ext. 1277.

All materials can be mailed to:
DeSales University Admissions Office
2755 Station Ave.
Center Valley, PA 

Auditions / Scholarship Day

To be accepted artistically into a performing arts major, you must audition/interview for our faculty during our annual Scholarship Audition/Interview Day(s) hosted on the DeSales campus.

Additional recommendations

Remember, there is no single preferred high school academic program, but a college preparatory course of study is highly recommended. Here's an example:

  • Four years of English
  • Three or four years of college preparatory mathematics
  • A minimum of two years of modern, foreign, or classical language
  • At least two laboratory science courses
Learn more about Undergraduate Admissions & Aid

Curriculum

The B.A. in Dance at DeSales University combines a theoretical and practical approach to the art of dance, cultivating the growth of the individual student and preparing them for professional careers in the field. 

Our core dance curriculum offers courses that are both practical and theoretical, including: 

  • Ballet and Modern Technique 
  • Dance Composition 
  • Dance in World Cultures 
  • Evolution of Ballet and Modern
  • Kinesiology for Dancers 
  • Methods for Teaching Educational Dance 
  • Freshman and Senior Seminars

Conservatory of Dance

The Conservatory of Dance provides the community with affordable, quality dance training while giving dance majors an opportunity to develop their skills as dance educators.

The Conservatory of Dance also offers a student experience in teaching a specific genre of dance and includes the teaching process, curriculum development, teaching observation and student teaching. It is intended for students who plan to pursue graduate study and/or a career in dance education.

Facilities

  

The DeSales Dance Department boasts two beautiful dance studios, both outfitted with a Harlequin sprung wood floor and top of the line marley floor.

Each studio is equipped with smart classroom technology, allowing for flexibility and innovation in how we approach the instruction of our art form.

Brisson Dance Studio

  • 3000+ sq. ft.
  • Harlequin sprung wood floor and marley
  • Projector with recessed screen for presentations, rehearsals, and classes
  • Accommodates piano and percussion for live class accompaniment

Labuda Dance Studio

  • 1500+ sq. ft.
  • Harlequin sprung wood floor and marley
  • Projector with recessed screen for presentations, rehearsals, and classes
  • Piano for live class accompaniment

Take a Tour of Labuda

harlequin sprung wood dance floors

A dance studio at DeSales, featuring harlequin sprung wood floors and marley.

Careers & Internships

What kind of careers can you pursue with a degree in Dance?

The combination of foundational training, experiential learning, and unique collaborations with diverse departments on campus has been proven to help our students find meaningful employment in the field of dance after graduation. Our alumni are proudly working in all areas of performance, dance education, and arts administration.

Starting day one, each student is paired with a faculty advisor who helps them navigate their 4 years at DeSales and ensure they are taking the right steps to reach their career goals.

Careers with a degree in dance from DeSales include:

  • Cast members and choreographers with regional dance companies and theaters, including cruise ships and theme parks.
  • Students in graduate programs to pursue advanced degrees in Dance Education, Dance Movement Therapy, and Arts Administration
  • Graduate students to pursue the Doctor of Physical Therapy degree, with specialties in dance and the performing arts
  • Community volunteers who launch their own non-profit dance companies and organizations, brining dance to their local communities
  • Owners of dance studios, teaching students of all ages.

Tuition & Fees

DeSales can help make your college expenses affordable through a combination of grants, loans, student employment, and scholarship resources.

Cost of attendance for undergrads for 2022-2023

Resident Students

Direct Costs Tuition - $41,100

Room and Board - $13,500
Mandatory Fees - $1,500
One-time Orientation Fee for First-Year students and Transfers - $200
Total = $56,300 (including first-year/transfer fees)

Estimated Indirect Costs
Books/Supplies - $1,468
Personal Expenses - $3,706
Total cost for resident students: $61,474

Commuter Students

Direct Costs
Tuition - $41,100
Mandatory Fees - $1,300
One-time Orientation Fee for First-Year students and Transfers - $200
Total = $42,600 (including first-year/transfer fees)

Estimated Indirect Costs
Books/Supplies - $1,468
Personal Expenses - $3,706
Transportation Costs - $2,138
Total cost for commuter students: $49,912

Off-Campus*

Direct Costs
Tuition - $41,100
Mandatory Fees - $1,300
One-time Orientation Fee for First-Year students and Transfers - $200
Total = $42,600 (including first-year/transfer fees)

Estimated Indirect Costs
Books/Supplies - $1,468
Personal Expenses - $3,706
Transportation Costs - $2,138
Living Expenses - $7,870
Total cost for off-campus students: $57,782
*First-year students are required to reside on campus or commute from home.

Parking Fee - $75

 

Dual Degree Undergraduate-to-Graduate Programs

If you are enrolled in an undergraduate-to-graduate degree program — for example a 5-year, 3+2, 3+3, program — the undergraduate tuition and fees apply only to the undergraduate portion of the program. As you progress into the graduate phase of your program, graduate tuition and fees apply. Please see your respective graduate program for more information. 

The financial aid process may appear overwhelming at first glance, but don't worry, we'll help you through it.

Accepted students are automatically be considered for scholarships upon receipt of a completed application and are awarded regardless of financial need. Funds for scholarships are limited, so we do encourage students to apply early.

Our comprehensive financial aid packages carefully explain the types and amounts of assistance —including federal, state, and institutional — that you may be eligible for to help cover education related expenses.

Total cost of attendance includes estimates for tuition, fees, room, board, books, and personal, transportation, and living expenses.

You can estimate your total cost of attendance with our Net Price Calculator

 

Performance

All dance majors participate as a dancer, understudy, and/or as a crew member for the Emerging Choreographers Concert and the Dance Ensemble Concert every year.

These types of experiences support our philosophy that the theoretical approach to performance must be supplemented with practical experience.

The Emerging Choreographer’s Concert showcases the impressive choreography of a select group of junior and senior dance majors. This fall concert celebrates the work and creativity of our entire department as it is student choreographed, danced, and run by our talented dance majors who are led by a faculty artistic director.

The spring Dance Ensemble Concert showcases a blend of new and innovative choreographic premieres by renowned guest artists as well as our accomplished dance faculty. The highlight of the dance season, our student performers take the mainstage to showcase their expressive talents in new and established repertoire by world class artists.

The annual Informal Dance Concerts offer students from first year to senior year an opportunity to propose new choreographic work to be presented one night only in the Schubert Theater.

Other performance opportunities involve collaboration with the other majors in the division of performing arts. These exciting student led projects range from junior directing scenes with our theatre majors to capturing dance on film with our TV/film majors. Students are encouraged to explore their passion for their art through Independent Study.

Dance students performing on stage
Toni Lundy

The sense of community is what attracted me to the DSU dance department. The faculty welcomed me with open arms and the warmth, professionalism, and sophistication that filled the studio convinced me this was the place for me. The department has helped me grow as a dancer. I am now ready to move into the profession, ready to network knowing I can hold my own on the larger stage of life.

— Toni Lundy '21

theatre production

Performing Arts Scholarships and Auditions

As a candidate for the DeSales Dance, Theatre, or TV/Film majors, you must apply and be accepted academically and artistically. To be accepted artistically into one of the performing arts majors, you must audition and/or interview, depending on the major.
Register for your performing arts audition or interview

The Labuda Center for Performing Arts

The Labuda Center for the Performing Arts is home to most Act 1 events. It is completely handicapped accessible, and features the 473 seat Main Stage Theatre and the 187 seat Schubert Theatre.

GPS Location: 2755 Station Ave., Center Valley, PA 18032

Learn more about The Labuda Center
Labuda Center at DeSales
DeSales SDI 2021 Danielle

Summer Dance Intensive (SDI)

The Summer Dance Intensive offers professional dance training to students ages 14 and up. The intensive program focuses on technical training in ballet, modern, and jazz, with additional classes offered in African dance, Hip-Hop, Improvisation, Pilates, and yoga. Students will also learn repertory work created by the faculty. Scholarships and residential options are available. Qualified students may also audition to earn college credit. 

Learn more about DeSales SDI