Describe Image HereMay 5, 2015 (Jackson, Miss.) - Belhaven University's Dance Department was recently recognized as a Top Ten Choreography School among other prestigious universities of dance such as The University of Arizona, Temple University, California State University and University of North Carolina-Greensboro. The Seattle-based newspaper Seattle Pi determined the top schools based on the type of degree offered and the quality of the choreography taught at each institution.

“It is great to see our dance program recognized among the best in the country,” said Dr. Roger Parrott, President of Belhaven University. “We stand out even further as the only Christian university working at the highest levels in dance.”

Cynthia Newland, Associate Professor and Chair of the Dance Department, said, “The inclusion of Belhaven's Dance Department on this Top Ten List, comes as an honor, affirming our desire to establish a competitive dance program. Our goal as instructors is to produce technically trained, refined dancers and performers who understand their craft and hold the power to communicate and honor God through dance.”

Belhaven dance faculty and guest artists provide students with opportunities to investigate and develop their choreographic “voice” through well-rounded curriculum in dance crafting courses. Dance mentors also offer practical applications to leaning, re-staging dances or setting new choreographies, encouraging dialogue about the process and end productions.

Every semester the department provides a platform for emerging choreographers to present their creations and receive constructive feedback. Newland adds, “We are intentional to include assignments for students to view an array of choreography from around the world as well as explore various approaches and a variety of tools for dance making. We require our students to provide intelligent communication about viewing dance and to articulate their intentions and choices for their own dance compositions. We take this part of the field of dance seriously, however, still strive to have some laughs and fun in the process.”