© Cylla von Tiedemann

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Our three-year Professional Training Program (PTP) is a full-time, post-secondary program that provides education and training in dance.

The program provides a broad curriculum, a solid foundation of knowledge about dance, physical and intellectual instruction in the art form, extensive performing experience, and an environment for learning that prepares students for a professional career.


A cornerstone of our approach is strong technical training in a number of related and mutually supportive dance disciplines, which enable dancers to develop a high level of skill and versatility and to realize each individual’s physical potential. Our focus on the imaginative and creative elements of each individual, as well as the quality and interpretation of their movement, contributes to the development of each dancer’s full expressiveness.

  • Dance technique, using sound anatomical practices in a variety of styles to encourage strength, stamina, flexibility, clarity, versatility, articulation, musicality, use of space, use of weight, dynamics, and phrasing
  • Special workshops/master classes, in selected dance, art, and health related disciplines, given by visiting artists and guest speakers
  • Body Work, including cardio/conditioning for strength, power, and flexibility, movement clinics to address particular technical or performance concerns, and small group coaching sessions
  • Anatomy, to give the dancer an understanding of functional anatomy, strategies for injury prevention, and principles of muscle and exercise physiology

Read more about the technique classes in the program


A range of courses that provide a context to support the students’ artistic development, and increase their understanding of the professional dance environment.

  • Dance History, to help students understand the legacy of the art form and the context for their training
  • Dance Adventures, in which visiting and resident artists are invited to speak informally with the entire student body about their background, work, philosophy, and career
  • Pedagogy 2, to develop the unique skills required for teaching creative movement to young children
  • Pedagogy 3, to develop the skills needed to teach modern/contemporary dance at beginner and elementary levels, including participation in practicum teaching sessions
  • Career Paths, to provide students with confidence, the relevant writing and organizational skills, and an understanding of the profession

Read more about the academic classes in the program

Interpretation and Performance

In rehearsal and in performance, dancers are immersed in the act of creation, re-creation, and interpretation. They experience different choreographic processes, learn valuable performance and production skills, and are prepared to become the most versatile of instruments as professional dancers.

  • Re-creation and repertoire, to work with professional choreographers, to enhance performance and interpretive skills, and to build to exciting and challenging performances during each semester
  • Bouffon, to explore elements of burlesque, commedia dell’arte, farce, and satire and to empower dancers with a sense of boldness in performance presence
  • Music, to develop skills in rhythm, vocal production, and listening
  • Elements of Production, to give the dancer an overview of the fundamentals of the theatre, including working on actual productions in various capacities

Read more about the interpretation and performance classes in the program

Performance Opportunities

Students have opportunities to perform special commissions or remounts of work by acclaimed Canadian choreographers; works by Christopher House from the repertoire of Toronto Dance Theatre; works by talented emerging creators; and classic dances by significant international choreographers.

The School presents a series of performances in our home theatre, including winter and spring programs that involve the entire student body and a third year show for graduating students in a distinctive program of solos, duets, and small ensemble repertory.

Third year students present their own choreographic work as a culmination of the Creative Process course, designed to guide them through the choreographic process, from conception through creation and rehearsal, and finally to performance. More informal student-run Coffee House performances regularly present original student choreography.

Read more about the performance opportunities in the program