Contemporary Dance – Issues and Processes

This seminar is designed for junior dance certificate students to investigate current dance practices and ideas. Part study and discussion of the processes, aesthetics and politics involved in dance making and viewing — part independent creative practice and critique — this course invites students to a deeper understanding of their own art making perspectives and to those of their classmates. Guest artists will visit classes and share some of the directorial, collaborative and interpersonal challenges involved in leading a significant creative enterprise. Serious creators (non-juniors/certificates) may apply to enroll.

Sample reading list:
Claire Bishop, Participation
Damaged Goods/Meg Stuart, Are We Here Yet?
Nato Thompson, Living as Form: Socially Engaged Art 1991-2011
Thomas DeFrantz, Anita Gonzales, Black Performance Theory
Philip Auslander, Liveness
Claudia La Rocco, Funny, You Don’t Look Dancerish

Reading/Writing assignments:
Independent ongoing choreographic work (approx. 2 hours outside class/week); 1-2 presentations on core choreographic concepts and issues, several short reflective preps for group discussion/debate, several short writing projects – artists statements, descriptions; artist interviews; and visiting artist research.

Other Requirements:
Open to Juniors and Seniors Only.

Prerequisites and Restrictions:
Open to junior dance certificate students, who will be given permission prior to enrollment period. By application, the course is also open to certificate seniors or to committed artists in other disciplines such as visual arts working with movement and performance. To apply, please email Prof. Susan Marshall ( and briefly state your interest in taking this course.




Fridays, 1:30 - 4:20 pm


Susan Marshall