The master of fine arts in dance may include an emphasis in choreography or performance and is designed to deepen students’ understanding and practice of dance as an embodied art form uniting creative, analytical, spiritual, and physical skills. By studying one-on-one with accomplished faculty from a wide array of backgrounds, students have the opportunity to develop, then refine, their unique movement language, and through that process to grow as artists and human beings.
Located in the center of one of the largest and most innovative dance communities in the country, Mills Dance provides the kind of intense laboratory environment so important to advanced study. Each fall the resident performing troupe, the Mills Repertory Dance Company, stages work by noted choreographers, and in the spring students perform in works by second year MFA candidates. Throughout the year everyone has the chance to participate in an array of dance exchanges, festivals, and student projects. The capstone of the degree is a culminating group choreographic project performed publicly, and a significant research paper that closely examines a dance idea of great interest to the student.
Besides the daily rigor and experimentation in the studio and classroom, graduate candidates have the opportunity to attend concerts in the community, take exciting master classes, apply to be student teachers, receive invaluable career advice, and build life-long contacts in the field. And because alumni remain an invaluable part of the Mills Dance Department, we stay in touch and help our former graduates develop and maintain their artistic and intellectual networks.