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I'm curious if anyone has any experience with Hope College's dance program. Any information is greatly appreciated. I believe it is more contemporary based; is that correct?


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Yes, you are right---Hope has a strong modern program which they are known for, along with offerings in classical ballet, jazz, tap to name a few.

They offer an excellent guest teacher program that my DD took advantage of while she was in high school via dual enrollment. She had instructors from Joffrey NYC, Ailey and Pilobilus. We have seen a few of their productions--quite innovative modern pieces--great variety--but my personal favorites were the tap numbers!

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  • 1 year later...
  • 2 years later...

I'm a few years late to help those who had already posted. But for prospective students, I'm going to try to help you out.


I am currently a Junior at Hope College and will be graduating May 2016 with a Physics major and minors in Dance and Math. It is mostly a modern/contemporary based department but it is not solely focused on that style. Majors and Minors are required to take at least two semesters of every style (Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Modern, Historical) along with theory courses in dance production, anatomical kinesiology, composition, dance history, and dance pedagogy. Because it is a non-audition program, the level of dancers ranges quite a bit, though so do the levels of classes. There are dancers who first stepped foot into a studio when they got to college and those with inadequate training along with dancers who are very capable of dancing out of high school. The department is good about placing you in levels accordingly and working with you at the level you are at. There are two or three guest artists each year who teach classes and set pieces for the companies as well as the faculty dance showcase. There are also tons of performance and choreography opportunities. There are two auditioned-for companies on campus open to Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors: one that is focused on dance education and outreach and another that is more "traditional" with repertory and a performance in October. There is an auditioned faculty dance showcase every March and non-auditioned student choreographed showcases every semester. These performances are open to all years. There is also Ballet Club which puts on their own student-run production every year, and Hip Hop Club which choreographs a student dance showcase piece each semester. Being a Christian school, there is also Sacred Dance Ministry which hosts an alternative worship service each semester, dances in on-campus chapel and gathering services, and dances at local churches on a regular basis. In addition to academics and extra-curriculars, Hope hosts different companies and guests from all around the world and all different styles who hold master classes, auditions and concerts. There have been a number of students who gain jobs immediately after graduation through these auditions.


I chose Hope because it is very easy to double major and even if you are not a major, you can still participate in all departmental companies, concerts and classes. As a Junior Dance minor, I have been in three faculty choreographed concerts, seven student dance showcase pieces, choreographed one student dance concert piece, have been in a company for two years, am the director for the Ballet Club productions, on leadership for Sacred Dance Ministry, and in the dance honors society.

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