What are the strongest ballet departments?

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What are the strongest ballet departments?

Frank Don
Partner East West College Counseling LLP

If not a conservatory...

Having known students who have studied at the Royal Ballet, the Paris Conservatoire and in St. Petersburg, I would suggest in the US the consideration of the following schools: University of Utah, Butler, Dickinson, Indiana University, Skidmore, Dominican, Point Park, among various other colleges and universities.

Annie Reznik
Counselor/CEO College Guidance Coach

Ballet Programs With Great College Atmospheres

Mercyhurst College With a beautiful campus in Erie, PA, Mercyhurst has nurtured its dance program for several decades and the result is an outstanding – and highly competitive – program focusing on classical ballet. With the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center as the schools cultural center, dancers have ample opportunity to display their skills. And Mercyhurst is small enough (about 2,000 undergraduates) that dance students are fully involved in the school’s active campus life. University of Oklahoma Most of us know Oklahoma for its legendary football team, but OU’s School of Dance is a source of cultural excellence that rivals the storied athletic program. As part of the university’s Weitzenhoffer Family College of Fine Arts, the dance program awards degrees in classical ballet and contemporary dance with emphasis on preparing students for careers in performing arts. Butler University In recent seasons Butler’s been famous for it’s outstanding men’s basketball program with great success in the NCAA tournament. But Butler University, located just outside of Indianapolis, also has a great dance program. The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Performance – offered through Butler’s Jordan College of Fine Arts – is among an elite corps of accredited programs in the US. The dance program is ballet intensive with offerings on modern, jazz and improv. And, Butler’s Jordan College of Fine Arts features performances throughout the US.

Pamela Hampton-Garland
Owner Scholar Bound

Ballet Departments with UMPH!!!!!

Check out Univ. of Utah which has a strong West Coast program, Indiana University which is also highly regarded and finally consider looking at the "Performing Arts Major's College Book" it will give you additional insight into specific programs related to your area of ballet rathar than a general overview.

Diane Coburn Bruning
choreographer/counselor in performing arts College Match, Inc, Performing Arts Specialist

Excellent ballet dance departments in Universities or Colleges

The majority of College/University Dance Departments have a strong modern focus or a split focus of modern and ballet (some have two separate departments) or modern and ethnic or jazz, etc. There are relatively few which strongly focus on ballet as their primary dance form with modern, jazz, ethnic, and others as secondary. Among the very strongest and most competitive departments focusing strongly on ballet are Butler University, Indiana University (Ballet Department), University of Utah (Ballet Department), and University of Cincinnati with others including University of Oklahoma, SMU, Point Park University, TCU , Mercyhurst, University of Arizona and a newer program with Alonzo King Lines Ballet/Dominican University. Within a conservatory setting, Juilliard is traditionally considered modern-based but they have an outstanding faculty and training in ballet and are undoubtedly the strongest Dance Department in the country. Other strong conservatory programs that have excellent ballet training are the Hartt School, NCSA, and New World School of the Arts.

JoAnne Ellsworth

Go West!

The University of Utah has the oldest ballet department west of the Mississippi River. The University of Utah is linked directly to Ballet West, the region's premier dance theatre. You may know that Salt Lake City was recently home to the Olymic Games and because of that, the city is modern and thriving. If you are a snow skier, this is the campus where you can dance, ski, and study and be just 20 minutes from your campus dorm.

Jonathan Dunn
Director Creative College Counseling, LLC

What are the strongest ballet departments?

University of Hartford/Hartt School, Indiana University, Butler University, Boston Conservatory, NYU Tisch School of the Arts, Southern Methodist University, and Juilliard. These are certainly not the only ballet programs, but these are some of the strongest. Gaining admission to these programs is difficult!

Barbara Cohen


Ballet programs in the New York metropolitan area will provide an added bonus of New York, the mecca for theater and dance. Eugene Lang of the New School, Julliard, and Marymount Manhattan all offer the dual consideration of being in Nw York and all of its opportunities as well as ballet programs in schools athat have strong support by having gnereal dance, music and theater programs- all ancillary programs that will enhance one's education. For a more taditional campus life while still achieving the excellence in ballet, dance and music, schools such as Indiana University and SUNY Purchase shoudl be considered. As always the school is only as good as the student who is happy there. Selecting an excellent ballet program with no other redeeming qualities to the student will not be a good choice. OF course a strong major offering is of paramount improtance but our students must find that they will be happy living the life that school offers.

Laura Owen

What are the strongest ballet departments?

Well that depends on what you are looking for. There are many groups (US News and World Report, Princeton Review, Forbes) that will give you rankings, but it is important to look at the indicators for the rankings. For instance the following schools get high rankings but for different reasons: Presitige - The Julliard School, New York City One of the oldest performing programs- Texas Women's University, Denton, Texas Highly ranked by Choreographers - Oklahoma City University What are you looking for? Size of school, location (urban, suburban, distance from home), commitment to major field, college values, demographics of student body, college clubs and activities available, selectivity, financial support, etc. Have you visited the school and talked with faculty and students about the program? All of these things are important considerations when choosing an institution of study.

Laura O'Brien Gatzionis
Founder Educational Advisory Services

Which is the best ballet department for you?

Just like other questions about the best colleges, you need to determine what your requirements are in deciding which are the best programs for you personally. Look at the faculty (training, teaching styles and affiliations). Where are the alumni working? Are they dancing professionally? Are they teaching and if so, where? Research and learn about performance opportunities. What are the audition requirements for the ballet program? Who were the guest artists in recent years? Look at the course offerings and become familiar with the requirements. Finally, visit the campus. Can you arrange to participate in a ballet class or at least observe one? Connect with and speak to current dance majors.

Ryan John
School Counselor Bethlehem High School

What are the strongest ballet departments?

Some colleges/universities with strong dance-ballet departments are Indiana University, Butler University, Smith College in Massachusetts, SUNY Purchase, University of Utah, Julliard, Ohio University, Brigham Young University.