Ours is the only department in the valley that houses theater and dance in the same curriculum. We emphasize the theoretical and aesthetic similarities between theater and dance, and we encourage exploration in the use of text, movement and design.
A wide range of additional dance offerings and performance opportunities are available through the Five College Dance Department. Dance courses at Amherst include contemporary, language of movement, improvisation, composition, choreography, dance history/philosophy, choreography and the camera, and performance art.
Students receive considerable individual attention in the program and are encouraged to explore and expand their personal movement vocabularies, techniques and interests in the context of developing original choreography and performance. In addition, there is a strong emphasis on relating performance studies to other disciplines within the liberal arts tradition.
The Department of Theater and Dance has six full-time faculty members, four adjunct faculty and numerous guest artists. Recent visitors have included Idan Cohen, Sean Curan, Tere O'Connor, Bill T. Jones, Yanira Castro and Company, and Karinne Keithley. There are numerous performing opportunities on the Amherst campus in both informal studio presentations and in the Kirby Theater, a 400-seat facility. Faculty, staff and major students form the nucleus of the production team and are jointly responsible for the College's Theater and Dance season. In addition, there are many other performance opportunities available on the other campuses of the Five College Community.