Theatre & Dance
Helanius J. Wilkins, Director of Dance
University Theatre Building
Office C335
T: 303-492-0677

The University of Colorado Boulder offers a well-established, nationally recognized dance program that encourages the pursuit of one’s artistic voice, embodied scholarship and pedagogical exploration. 

Our BFA program is designed to meet the needs of highly curious and motivated students interested in preparing for a professional dance career in performance and/or choreography while in an academic setting. Our curriculum is designed to use dance and the body to challenge assumptions about practices, values, technology and sustainability. Our program scaffolds entrepreneurial approaches to art-making based in personal initiative, curiosity and versatility.

We support the vital cultivation of self-awareness alongside a nuanced appreciation of one’s positionality within the global conversation. Somatic studies serve as the integrative tissue in our highly diverse and forward-thinking program.

We are a contemporary program—one that values and provides study in a range of styles and fusion of forms that influence and reflect the multifaceted nature of dance performance today. Our curriculum is designed to develop concrete skills in performance and choreography and to instill an appreciation of the role that dance plays in human culture around the world. 


Admission Requirements

Students who did not pre-audition into the BFA program and who wish to pursue the BFA can audition during the fall semester of their freshman or sophomore year. If the student is a sophomore auditioning for the BFA, they must be enrolled in or have taken DNCE 3033 or DNCE 3043 in order to be on track to graduate in four years.

Application guidelines for the BFA track are posted each fall semester. The undergraduate director will notify students of faculty decisions regarding their audition. If a student is admitted to the program, they should talk to their primary advisor to have their degree status officially changed from BA to BFA. 

The characteristics that the faculty looks for in BFA students are:

  • Exceptional technical/expressive ability as demonstrated in class work and performance.
  • ​Choreographic skill or potential as demonstrated through movement invention and appropriate clarity of structure
  • Willingness and drive necessary to pursue a professional career in dance.
  • Exceptional musicality and rhythmic precision.
  • Maturity, organization and a positive attitude.

Required Courses and Credit Hours

Required Courses
DNCE 1012Dance Production2
DNCE 1013Dance Improvisation2
DNCE 1027Dance in Cultural Perception and Expression3
DNCE 1908First Year Dance Seminar1
DNCE 2501African Dance2
DNCE 3005Movement Awareness and Injury Prevention for the Dancer3
DNCE 3014Inside the Groove: Developing Rhythmic Skills2
DNCE 3024SOUND Choices: Enhancing the Music/Dance Relationship2
DNCE 3033Choreographic Resources3
DNCE 3035Production Practicum1
DNCE 3043Choreographic Process3
DNCE 3901Technique Practicum1-3
DNCE 4012Concert Production1
DNCE 4036Dance Teaching Practices: Inclusive Approaches to Instruction3
DNCE 4017Dancing Histories: Sex, Gender and Race in U.S. Concert Dance3
DNCE 4037Contemporary Concert Dance: Shifting Perspectives in Performance3
or DNCE 4047 Hip-Hop Dance History
DNCE 4053Advanced Dance Composition3
DNCE 5052Studio Concert3
THTR 4029Performance and Community Engagement3
THTR 4081Senior Seminar3
Take 12 credit hours of one of the following: 112
Major Technique
Major Technique
Major Technique
Select one of the following:2-3
Acting 1
Performance Improvisation Techniques
Performing Voices of Women
Take 9 credit hours of electives in dance technique with course numbers that end in 1.9
Select one of the following THTR Production courses:2-3
Introduction to Performance Design
Costume Design 1
Scene Design 1
Stage Management
Stage Lighting Design 1
Sound Design
Scene Painting
Stage Lighting Design 2
Theatre Make-Up Design
Costume Patterning and Construction
Some sections of the following including Tailoring or Projection Design:
Special Topics in Theatre Design and Technology
Total Credit Hours72-76

Additional Requirements

In addition to specified coursework, the BFA student must meet the following requirements:

  • Show original choreographic work each semester in Open Space, FRESH or Dance Class Showings.
  • Present a concert in conjunction with other senior BFA's in the spring of their senior year.
  • By December of their junior year, the student must have formed a committee of two faculty members who will evaluate their concert. The student and First Reader (lead faculty member) of the committee will complete a BFA Concert Form that is given to the Director of Dance Production by January 31 junior year. The Director of Dance Production will help you plan and oversee the production aspects of the show.
  • Maintain a 3.2 GPA in required dance and theatre courses. If a student drops below the required GPA by the time of their concert proposal submission (January 31), they will be removed from the BFA and their concert proposal will no longer be considered.

Graduating in Four Years

Consult the Four-Year Guarantee Requirements for more information on eligibility. The concept of "adequate progress" as it is used here only refers to maintaining eligibility for the four-year guarantee; it is not a requirement for the major. To maintain adequate progress toward a BFA in dance, students should meet the requirements in the Four-Year Plan section.

Four-Year Plan of Study

Through the required coursework for the major, students will fulfill all 12 credits of the Arts & Humanities area of the Gen Ed Distribution Requirement and will fulfill the Global Perspective category of the Gen Ed Diversity Requirement.

Plan of Study Grid
Year One
Fall SemesterCredit Hours
DNCE 1012 Dance Production 2
DNCE 1027 Dance in Cultural Perception and Expression 3
DNCE 1908 First Year Dance Seminar 1
DNCE 2021 Major Technique 2
Gen. Ed. Distribution course (example: Natural Sciences with Lab) 4
Gen. Ed. Skills course (example: Lower-division Written Communication) 3
 Credit Hours15
Spring Semester
DNCE 1013 Dance Improvisation 2
DNCE 3041 Major Technique 2
DNCE 3035 Production Practicum 1
Additional technique as needed 2
Gen. Ed. Skills course (example: QRMS) 3-5
Gen. Ed. Distribution course (example: Natural Science) 3
Elective 3
 Credit Hours16-18
Year Two
Fall Semester
DNCE 2501 African Dance 2
DNCE 3014 Inside the Groove: Developing Rhythmic Skills 2
THTR 4029 Performance and Community Engagement 3
THTR 2050 Technical Theatre for Performance 2
Gen. Ed. Distribution/Diversity course (example: Social Sciences) 3
Gen. Ed. Distribution course (example: Natural Science) 3
 Credit Hours15
Spring Semester
DNCE 3005 Movement Awareness and Injury Prevention for the Dancer 3
DNCE 3041
Major Technique
or Major Technique
DNCE 3033 Choreographic Resources 3
DNCE 3024 SOUND Choices: Enhancing the Music/Dance Relationship 2
Additional technique as needed 2
Gen. Ed. Distribution course (example: Natural Sciences) 3
 Credit Hours15
Year Three
Fall Semester
DNCE 3041
Major Technique
or Major Technique
DNCE 3901 Technique Practicum 1-3
DNCE 4036 Dance Teaching Practices: Inclusive Approaches to Instruction 3
Gen. Ed. Distribution/Diversity course (example: Social Sciences/US Perspective) 3
Gen. Ed. Skills course (example: Upper-division Written Communication) 3
Elective 3
 Credit Hours15-17
Spring Semester
DNCE 3041
Major Technique
or Major Technique
DNCE 3043 Choreographic Process 3
DNCE 4012 Concert Production 1
THTR 1003
Acting 1
or Performance Improvisation Techniques
or Performing Voices of Women
Additional technique as needed 3
Gen. Ed. Distribution course (example: Social Sciences) 3
 Credit Hours14-15
Year Four
Fall Semester
DNCE 3041
Major Technique
or Major Technique
DNCE 4017 Dancing Histories: Sex, Gender and Race in U.S. Concert Dance 3
DNCE 4053 Advanced Dance Composition 3
Gen. Ed. Distribution course (example: Social Sciences) 3
Elective 3
 Credit Hours14
Spring Semester
DNCE 4037
Contemporary Concert Dance: Shifting Perspectives in Performance
or Hip-Hop Dance History
DNCE 5052 Studio Concert 3
THTR 4081 Senior Seminar 3
Additional technique as needed 2
Elective 3
 Credit Hours14
 Total Credit Hours118-123