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Dance History

This course provides an overview of developments in western modern dance in the 20th century; it is designed to give dancers an understanding of the legacy of the art form and the context for their training.  Second term focuses on the development of contemporary dance in Canada.

Students are encouraged to look at dance in economic, social, political, and art-historical contexts.  Classes include video examples of the work of various key choreographers.

Readings and assignments are included in the coursework.

Dance Adventures

Dance Adventures are a series of presentations for the entire student body, in which visiting and resident artists are invited to speak informally about their background, work, philosophy, and career.

Dance Adventures can include video presentations, demonstrations, and movement workshops to elaborate and illuminate the artists’ talk.

Pedagogy 2

In this course, second year students are acquainted with the unique skills required for teaching creative movement to young children.

Some of these skills include: developing age-appropriate movement material; time-management; working with props, books, and movement maps; creating movement material to support other subjects, such as math and science; and an understanding of provincial ministry dance guidelines.

Trends in education are also addressed such as: effective partnering practices between artists and educators, equity awareness, and social justice concerns. Students practise these skills in an elementary school in the Cabbagetown neighbourhood. All PTP students are given an opportunity (under supervision) to assist in the School’s Young Dancers’ Program.

Pedagogy 3

This course provides third year dancers with basic skills needed to teach contemporary dance at beginner and elementary levels.  Dancers learn basic teaching principles, how to create a phrase of movement, how to use their voice effectively when teaching, and how to demonstrate for a senior teacher.

Included are observations of various teaching strategies, and sessions with an experienced dance accompanist on the use of music. Students participate in practicum teaching sessions in a variety of settings.

Career Paths

The focus of this course is to provide students with the relevant skills and confidence to enter the profession.  Students acquire practical experience in writing résumés, biographies, cover letters, artistic statements, project descriptions, budgets, and grant applications.

The course provides information on legislation regarding the status of the artist, the Canadian Artist Code, and the Professional Standards for Dance.  An introduction to financial management, including income tax preparation, is addressed, and parallel careers are examined.

Information is provided regarding relevant granting bodies, service organizations, and artists’ unions.  Third-year students attend the “On the Move” Career Day.

The programme is designed to prepare students for a professional dance career and as such it needs to be, and students wish it to be demanding – the goal is to achieve a positive and challenging learning environment and this was consistently the case. – Christopher Bannerman, Canadian Heritage Assessor