Skip to main content




Contemporary Dance at BYU prepares students to meet the challenges of a dynamic profession. Our goal is to guide and support students in becoming artists, educators and scholars. Whether students study to become performers, teachers, choreographers or researchers, our experienced professional faculty provide world-class mentoring within a nurturing and supportive, yet challenging environment. Central to our mission is a desire to encourage and hone individual student voice and creativity.

The contemporary dance area trains students in technique, improvisation, choreography, performance, and teaching. Our curriculum explores the gamut of what it means to be ‘contemporary’ within an ever-evolving field. Students encounter movement vocabularies that range from classic modern dance to post-modern to the latest contemporary trends.

Students have opportunities for growth in each of three auditioned dance companies: Kinnect, dancEnsemble (dE) and Contemporary Dance Theatre (CDT). These companies, considered central within the contemporary experience, each provides unique, educational opportunities for growth in performance, teaching and choreography.

Most of our contemporary students choose to major in one of the department’s two accredited undergraduate degree options, which also provide the opportunity to study dance science, pedagogy, history, media and critical studies. Students in the Dance BA program may choose to emphasize contemporary dance with a focus in performance, choreography or pedagogy; while students in the Dance Education K–12 program will become certified to teach dance in the public schools grades 7–12 and endorsed in grades K–6. High standards of achievement are expected within this very diverse academic environment. Students and faculty alike are nationally recognized as leaders in the discipline.


All previously scheduled LIVE auditions during Spring 2020 have been canceled.

  • Toggle Item
    Contemporary Dance Theatre

    Thank you for your patience as we transition to online video auditions and invited call backs. This year:

    • Round 1 will be by video submission due not later than Monday, June 15, 2020 @ Midnight.
    • Round 2 will be an invited live call back Saturday, August 15, 2020 @ 10:00 A.M.
    • Rehearsals will begin Monday, August 17, 2020.

    We understand the difficulty this may cause for students who may be called back on August 15 and may not make the company, and we sincerely apologize for this inconvenience. However, to ensure the physical caliber and company unity this physical audition is necessary before the start of Fall semester. We hope then you will use the summer to deepen your physical practice and train throughout these coming months.

    Video Audition Requirements

    Video Audition Material Due not later than Saturday, June 15, 2020 @ Midnight

    Register and upload a URL link of your solos (Vimeo or YouTube) on your PAtrack application ( Event will be titled: “CDT Video Audition Submission Due Saturday, June 15, 2020). Make sure you have given permission for us to view these links. If you have never registered at BYU, you will need to create an account before gaining access to

    1. Sequence 1 (taught by Brayden Singley). These 3 links break down the sequence. Sequence total 1:40 min.

    Music: “Naïve to the Bone” by Marie Davidson (Can be found on Spotify and Apple music)

    2. Sequence 2 – Solo – Sequence total 1:00 min.
    a. 1 minute MAX solo. All movement after the 1 minute mark will not be included.
    b. Self-choreographed (no collaborative choreography or group choreography)
    c. The solo should demonstrate contemporary technique and skill that includes, but is not limited to:

    • Whole-body connectivity
    • Range and articulation of spine, hips, shoulders, feet
    • Weight shifting
    • Strength, power, and agility on all three levels (ground work, deep lunges, and air moment).

    d. The solo should demonstrate performance artistry that includes, but is not limited to:

    • Expressivity
    • Projection
    • Nuance
    • Maturity

    e. It should also demonstrate creative process skills that include innovation and conceptual development. f. Please include a music credit.

    Questions? Please email for assistance.

  • Toggle Item

    Kinnect Auditions

    November 30, 2020

    3:00 PM
    RB 185/187

    Callbacks December 2 (8:00 AM-12:00 PM)

    Kinnect is an internationally acclaimed outreach performing company. The contemporary modern dance group performs for and teaches more than 15,000 elementary students each year. Kinnect is a Winter and Spring semester commitment.

    As part of the audition process, dancers will learn and perform multiple contemporary modern movement phrases; dancers may be asked to improvise and create original movement at the audition. Dancers should be prepared for a short teaching experience and interview at the callback portion of the audition. Be prepared to dance in bare feet.

  • Toggle Item
    DancEnsemble (dE)

    Thank you for your patience as we transition to a new audition format for the upcoming Fall 2020 Semester. I know you have all been asked to be extremely patient and flexible, and we appreciate your kindness and adaptability as we all navigate these times. More information can be found at


    Will be held Tuesday, August 25, 2020, from 6-8:00 p.m. All choreographers must also audition as dancers.

    To audition:

    1. Fill out the sign-up sheet that is found by following this link to a Google doc.
    2. Send me an email at expressing your interest.
    3. Receive, complete and return a form from me. This will help you prepare for a 10 minute interview/proposals on April 25th.
    4. Schedule and attend an interview with explaining your proposal. Interviews will be held either via Zoom or in 185/187 Richards Building -- your choice.

    dE in Fall 2020 is a dE classic. There will be no required collaboration (though you may choose to collaborate.) This is your chance to do whatever your choreographic heart desires!


    Will be held live on Thursday, August 27, 2020, from 6-9:00 p.m. in studio 185/187 Richards Building. All choreographers must also audition as dancers.

    To audition:

    1. pre-register at, under the event “dancEnsemble Dancer Audition.”
    2. Please arrive at the audition a few minutes early to fill out paperwork.
    3. Wear dance attire and be ready to sweat and have a good time.
    4. If you have any questions feel free to contact me at

    Requirements for all members of dE

    • Register for DANCE 368R (T/TH 3:00-4:30 PM): Fall 2020
    • Register for a Contemporary Modern Technique course: Fall 2020 (no audits)
    • Participation in 2, two-hour rehearsals a week that will be scheduled either Tuesday or Thursday 6:00-8:00 or 8:00-10:00 PM
    • Participation in three Saturday rehearsals TBA
    • Possible company position (optional)
    • Assistance with concert marketing (1 hour commitment)
    • Participation in the DE concert and tech week: November 3-7, 6:00-10:30 PM, Performances: November 6, 7:30 PM, November 7, 2:00 and 7:30 PM
    • Club fees of $50

Student Ensembles

Contemporary Dance Theatre

Opportunity - BYU Contemporary Dance Theater (Choreography By Jesse Obremski)

“This troupe, guided by resourceful choreographers, sustains a disciplined stamina which helps them deliver the programme in high spirits. It is, also, every minute of it, charming.”
– Sjoerd Meijer, The Daily News, Durban, South Africa

Contemporary Dance Theatre (CDT) ignites audiences with its whirlwind of motion, color, and feeling. Showcasing contemporary dance at its best in styles that range from lyrical and contemporary jazz to classical modern, the company is committed to reaching people of all ages. Whether thrilling audiences in India or teaching young children in Australia, these articulate performers present dance that uplifts, entertains and educates.

Since 1975, CDT (formerly known as The Dancers’ Company) has taught workshops and toured throughout the world, twice being invited to perform at the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. The company has performed works by master choreographers including Lar Lubovitch, Alwin Nikolais, Doris Humphrey, Sara and Jerry Pearson, Ihsan Rustem, and Loni Landon.

For Ballroom Dance Company tour schedules and booking information please visit


  • Register for DANCE 468R MWF 3:00-6:00 pm/Sat 8-12 pm Fall and winter
  • Register for a Contemporary Modern Technique course: Fall 2020 & winter 2021 (no audits/no exceptions). Please don’t consider applying for CDT if your graduation plan/schedule prohibits you from taking contemporary technique for credit both semesters.
  • Participation in guest choreography may require additional rehearsals outside of CDT time due to choreographer’s schedule. However, no student will be required to be in guest works outside of CDT time.
  • 2 week boot camp August 17-28, 2020 M-F 9-6 pm
  • 2-3 week tour Taiwan and Singapore TBD dates postponed until 2021-2022
  • Mandatory company position
  • Assistance with concert marketing
  • Participation in the CDT concert and tech week: Jan 22-Jan 30, 2021
  • Participation in World of Dance concert and tech week: Sept 14-19, 2020
  • Club fees of $250 (includes warm ups, social events)
  • International Tour Fee: $1500
  • All students on CDT receive a small performance scholarship to off-set the cost/fees

Additional commitments are required. For further information, please contact the Artistic Director, Keely Song, at


“They excel not just in formation maneuvers but in unison step-work that’s smooth as honey. Their partnering is seamless for swings and lifts.”
– George Jackson, Washington Post

Kinnect is a student outreach performance dance company with a specific focus on developing teaching, creative, and performing skills in its members. This group is carefully selected, prepared, and mentored in order to effectively teach dance as a creative process to elementary- and middle-school-age children, following the Utah State Dance Standards. Group members create a “lecture-performance” during winter semester and tour to local public schools, museum, and conferences several days in March and the first four weeks of spring term.


  • Register for Dance 348R Winter – Mon. & Wed, 4:00 – 6:00pm.
  • Register for Dance 365 Creative Dance for Elementary – Fridays, 9:00 – 10:50 am
  • Register for a Contemporary technique class, preferably 241R, 243R, 340R, 341R, or 440R (No audits.)
  • Participate in two Saturday rehearsals TBA
  • Tour to local schools in Winter and Spring
  • Company and fingerprinting fees $50-$60
  • Attend Callbacks, Sat. Dec. 2nd 8-12, 1137 RB
  • Attend 2018 Orientation, Thurs., Dec.14, 11-12 164 RB (last day of class)

Questions can be addressed to Marilyn Berrett (marilyn_berrett@byu.edi) or Heather Francis (


DancEnsemble is a contemporary dance company that provides students the opportunity to develop and refine their performance and choreographic skills through studio work, out-of-class rehearsals, and performances. Participation in the company is a semester by semester commitment and students may audition for both Fall and Winter semesters. Choreography in the dancEnsemble concert each semester includes work created by faculty as well as students, providing participants the opportunity to work both with high level faculty choreographers and with peer choreographers. Involvement in dancEnsemble also provides an environment where professionalism in the field of dance is fostered.


  • Register for DANCE 368R (T/TH 3:00-4:30 PM): Fall 2019
  • Register for a Contemporary Modern Technique course: Fall 2019 (no audits)
  • Participation in 2, two-hour rehearsals a week that will be scheduled either Tuesday or Thursday 6:00-8:00 or 8:00-10:00 PM
  • Participation in three Saturday rehearsals TBA
  • Possible company position (optional)
  • Assistance with concert marketing (1 hour commitment)
  • Participation in the DE concert and tech week: November 5-7, 6:00-10:30 PM, November 8, 7:30 PM, November 9, 2:00 and 7:30 PM
  • Club fees of $50