About the Program (English)

The Department of Dance of the University of the Americas Puebla is committed to providing high quality training in both classical and contemporary dance forms.  This training in dance is integrated with a well-rounded intellectual and creative practice designed to support the formation of artists, citizens, and scholars, who can serve the cultural and social needs of their communities at the highest level.

Requirements for Entrance

In an effort to accomplish our academic mission effectively and to improve the quality of our program we are currently adopting certain measures to strengthen the Dance program at UDLAP.  Starting in Fall 2009 there is a new admission criteria for the program.  Candidates must be accepted both, through the general admission process established for all students coming to UDLAP, and through an audition in order to be admitted into the dance program specifically.

The audition includes a personal interview with the faculty, participation in a short Classical Ballet class and a short Contemporary Dance class, plus performing both a guided improvisation and a prepared choreography in the style of your choice of up to 1-minute duration.

Through the year we will publish the calendar for the auditions cycle, some dates coinciding with our biannual open house event EXPO UDLAP, as well as other dates for the spring in early January, and the fall in May and early August.


OBJECTIVES:

General goals:

In view of the artistic necessities of the contemporary world, this program seeks to develop in its students a commitment to a technical and creative practice, supported by critical and well-articulated research on the multiple discourses of dance.  Considering dance as a relatively young profession and of recent academic incorporation in Mexico, the curriculum attempts to be a sum of flexible practical and cognitive mediums that would facilitate the integral development of the student, as an artist, teacher, thinker, researcher, choreographer, critic, or producer.

Particular goals:

Students will learn, in practice, issues related to production, programming, and diffusion of a dance concert.  Together with a rigorous program of technical and creative training, students will gain experience in theory and history of art, lighting, collaboration with other art practices and ideas, administration, scenic design and technical management for the stage.  All these skills will allow them to develop, in an integral and effective way, their own thoughts and corporeal, expressive and aesthetic discourses, with a direct impact in the growth of dance culture and the community in Mexico.

The Dance program is committed to expose and direct their students towards the achievement of important goals in dance education, including[1]:

  • The ability to connect movement, sensations, emotions, and thinking
  • The ability to explore and know ones own body
  • The ability to know potentials and limitations of one’s own self in order to realize oneself in a conscious manner
  • The ability to relate movement and breath
  • The ability to relate movement and space
  • The ability to relate movement, time and rhythm
  • The ability to observe, analyze, create empathy and construct kinetic images which permit the conservation of neuro-motor plasticity
  • The ability to interpret movement, not only execute it.
  • The Ability to work both individually and in groups
  • The ability to assume distinct roles such as dancer, choreographer, etc.
  • The ability to respect and offer opinions in a manner both positive and imaginative
  • The ability to place subjective propositions in choreographic proposals or in movement
  • The ability to construct symbolic languages.

[1]Pgs. 198-199 de La Ensenanza de la Danza Contemporanea: Una experiencia de investigacion colectiva by Elizabeth Camara y Hilda Islas, Editores

 

Plan de estudios

 

Asignatura

Unidades

Español I

6

Lengua Extranjera I

6

Razonamiento Cuantitativo

6

Danza Contemporánea I

6

Ballet I

6

Composición Coreográfica I

6

Práctica Escénica I

6

Lengua Extranjera II

6

Español II

6

Técnica Alternativa

6

Dance Studies

6

Ballet II

6

Danza Contemporánea II

6

Lengua Extranjera III

6

Arte, Historia y Cultura

6

Historia del Ballet

6

Danza Contemporánea III

6

Ballet III

6

Práctica Escénica II

6

Tecnologías de la Información en la Construcción delConocimiento

6

Estudios Somáticos

6

Dramaturgia del Cuerpo

6

Danza Contemporánea IV

6

Ballet IV

6

Composición Coreográfica II

6

Ética para el Desarrollo Sostenible

6

Música, Forma y Expresión

6

Performance Studies

6

Técnica Complementaria

6

Danza Contemporánea V

6

Ballet V

6

Práctica Escénica III

6

Tendencias de la Danza Actual

6

Metodologías de la Enseñanza de Danza Contemporánea

6

Improvisación

6

Danza Contemporánea VI

6

Ballet VI

6

Composición Coreográfica III

6

Prácticas en la Profesión I

6

Producción y Montaje

6

Danza Contemporánea VII

6

Ballet VII

6

Temas Selectos I

6

Práctica Escénica IV

6

Prácticas En La Profesión II

6

Temas Selectos II

6

Temas Selectos III

6

Práctica Escénica V

6

Metodologías de la Enseñanza de Danza Clásica

6

Danza como Profesión

6

Total                                                    300      

 

PROSPECTIVE CANDIDATE PROFILE:

 

The student who enters the Dance major should have the following abilities:

  • Preparation in classical ballet or contemporary dance is preferred, although we do not discard the possibility to receive students without previous experience – who demonstrate talent.
  • A sensibility about dance and the scenic arts in general.
  • Appetite for basic information about the dance World
  • Aptitude for the historical study and analysis of the scenic arts.
  • Commitment to the cultural development of the country

 

PROFILE OF A GRADUTE:

The student who is a graduate of the Dance Program will have developed, during their studies, the following abilities:

  • Awareness of the main issues of their profession in Mexican Society and in relation to an international panorama.
  • The capacity to indentify lacks and potentials for development, and to analytically propose creative, critical, ethical, and interdisciplinary solutions that can improve their society.
  • Wide and specialized knowledge of various practical and theoretical models that permit his/her incorporation and development in the professional dance environment – both locally and internationally – as a creator, artist, researcher, critic, teacher,administrador, and/or producer and promoter of artistic projects.
  • Power to develop an individual methodology and the practice of self-critique towards an argumentative artistic practice in constant transformation.

 

  • A capacity for reflection and argumentation regarding the contemporary debate in Dance and its context, in both a written and oral manner – in Spanish and in English.
  • Valuing of cultural diversity and the flexible character of his/her profession to collaborate with distinct artistic disciplines and manifestations. Promoting, as such, the integration of Dance with different groups within society.
  • Efficacy in the technologies of information and communication for the integral performance of his/her professional artistic practice.
  • Articulation of ideas and reflections about the practices of the profession, and his/her own personal practices, in order to form part of the dialogue generated by corporeal and textual discourses.
  • Interest in continuous investigation in diverse fields of knowledge, and mastery of a continuous questioning and restructuring in the knowledge related to the theory and practice of Dance
  • The capacity and necessary knowledge required for realizing post-graduate studies in prestigious institutions.

FACULTY: 

Mtro. Pedro Beiro López:

Classical Ballet and Ballet History

Pedro Beiro was born in Havana, Cuba in 1951. He started studies of Classical Ballet in 1962 at Havana’s Escuela Provincial de Ballet and in 1966 he was chosen to carry on his training at the National School of the Arts, where he graduated in 1970, receiving the titles of Ballet Dancer and Ballet Teacher.

That same year he commenced his professional life at the company Ballet de Camagüey, reaching the status of Principal Dancer. He also served as Maitre de Ballet and was named member of artistic direction as Secretary of the Artistic & Technical Advisory Committee.

For over 20 years he developed a wide career as a dancer, having performed classical and contemporary repertoire’s most important roles, noted for the purity of his movement, solid technique and his capacity to assume the different styles with an excellent sense of interpretation in ballets such as: La Fille Mal Gardée, Swan Lake, Coppélia, Romeo & Juliet, Othello, Sylphides, Carmina Burana, among others. He gained success both in Cuba as well as abroad.

As teacher, he has also had a wide trajectory: National Institute of Dance and Ballet Ecuatoriano Cámara in Quito, Ecuador; Institute of Music and Dance and Bolivia’s Offical Ballet in La Paz, Bolivia; Superior Institute of Arts and Professional School of Ballet in Camagüey, Cuba.

Since 1997 he was appointed as teacher in the Dance Program at the University of the Américas Puebla, teaching the following courses: Ballet Technique, Point Technique, Repertory, Ballet Teaching Methods and Ballet History.

As choreographer he has created and/or made versions of the following ballets: Symbiosis, Trayectoria Incoherente, Esto va en serio, Wagner x Tres, Baroque Pas de Six, Divertimento No.1, Fantasia, Bolero, Divertimento No.2, Tiempo de Tres, Concierto Azul, The Nutcracker, Giselle, Swan Lake, Sylphides, Coppélia and the shows: Salute to Dance and Dance Dialogues.

Mtra. Mayra Morales:

Contemporary Dance and Dance Theory

Mexican artist, teacher, arts ambassador and researcher; Mayra Morales currently works at Universidad de las Americas since 2005. First as dance professor at the BA Dance and then from August 2006 to July 2008 as the Program’s Coordinator. She returned in August 2008, to teaching, researching and creating. She has recently begun working in DEPA, an imaginary company for the Arts Development in Mexico.

Mayra studied dance from a small age in Puebla City and Mexico City. Pursuing an expansion in her practice within dance she traveled frequently to Monterrey, Xalapa, Guadalajara, San Luis Potosí, Canada, Russia, USA, Portugal and finally, London, where she discovered Contemporary Dance. With a Scholarship of Excellence in Humanities, she studied her BA Dance at UDLA-P between 1999 to 2002, graduating with Magna Cum Laude. She won an honorific mention in the ‘best performer’ contest during San Luis Potosi’s Dance Festival 2001. She lived, studied and worked in London, England from 2003 to 2005, where she studied her MA in European Dance-Theatre Practices at LABAN, supported by an award by the National Fund for the Arts and Culture, Mexico, 2003.

Since 1999 she has been working as a performer and collaborating with national and international choreographers for creating and co-creating dance and interdisciplinary pieces. Her work constantly questions the nature of artistic practice and investigates within installation, performance art, site-specific and Dance-Theatre methodologies. Since 2004 she has declared herself as a Non-Disciplinarity Artist, with which she makes use of any possible medium in order to facilitate answers within a rigorous enquiry on Thought, Life and Human Condition, and in doing so, hopefully avoiding the categorization of processes and results.

Notable among her activities abroad: in 2005, participation in «The Dancer’s Project» at The Place, London; in 2006, invitation for auditioning at 2nd cycle at P.A.R.T.S., Brussels, Belgium and invitation to perform at «Arena Festival», Germany; in 2007 attended the International Symposium on Dance Research: Rethinking Dance Theory and Practice at Paris, France; in 2008 receives «DanceWEB Europe Scholarship» for participating at Impulstanz Dance Festival, Vienna, Austria where she co-founds «Embassy of…» together with other scholarship holder colleagues; she is invited to perform with artist Nadia Lauro for her piece «I Hear Voices»; spends her last summer days in NY City planning projects for the future, especially with artist Penny Arcade, with whom she co-founds «ImpulsARcade» together with 9 others.

In Mexico: in 2007, was awarded the Prize for Best Choreography during Festival «Poesía y Movimiento» with her Piece «Mil Años Madrugada»; in July 2008, invited to participate at Festival Danza Extrema at Xalapa, Veracruz; in February 2008 her project «From A to Z» gets funded by Puebla’s Government through the FOESCAP 2008-2009. She currently works with both projects «From A to Z» and «The Dinner Project» which started at Vienna under the supervision of coaches DD Dorvillier and Trajal Harrel for the proposed investigation «Public Service», inaugurating itself with the Performance «We are not here to like each other».

At University she has taught courses in Performance and Ensemble, History and Theory of Dance, Choreography, Contemporary Dance Technique, Repertory, Body Conditioning, Movement for Actors, Seminar in Dance and Phenomenology, Seminar in Dance-Theatre and Theory of Performance Studies; at present she teaches and develops the courses: Introduction to Dance and Tendencies and Problems of Today’s Dance.

Since 2006 co-founds and co-directs, together with Ray Eliot Schwartz, Performatica: International Forum for Contemporary Dance and Movement Arts. Her mission is to share, exchange and generate praxis of thought and consciousness in response to the Society of the Spectacle in which we live and imagines a future in which change is possible towards substituting «I» for «us». Art for her is not about communication nor expression, but a response to an internal voice that commands: «Pull me back to Life».

Mtro. Ray Eliot Schwartz:

Contemporary Dance and Dance Program Coordinator

Ray Eliot Schwartz is a movement artist and activist who has spent the last 20 years committed to developing an experiential understanding of the body. As a co-founder of four contemporary dance projects in the southern United States: Sheep Army, The Zen Monkey Project, Steve’s House Dance Collective, and THEM, he has choreographed, performed, presented other artists, and developed educational curricula for diverse populations of students. In addition, he has taught at The Mimar Sinan Universitesi in Istanbul, Turkey, and colleges and universities throughout the U.S. and Mexico.

Schwartz has served on the faculty of the American Dance Festival, the Bates Dance Festival, MELT, the Movement Research educational intensive located in NYC, SFADI, the Colorado College Summer Dance Festival, and has taught, performed and conducted research extensively in the U.S, Europe and Asia. His training includes high school at the North Carolina School of the Arts and a BFA in Dance from Virginia Commonwealth University. Additional study includes certification as Practitioner of Body-Mind Centering, trainings in Zero-Balancing, Cranio-Sacral Therapy, Traditional Thai Massage, and the Feldenkrais Method. For his MFA at the University of Texas at Austin Schwartz balanced academic research with a commitment to service and activism within the Austin, Texas arts scene. Towards that end, he directed Sheep Army/Elsewhere Dance Theater, taught classes in dance, movement, and body-work, researched the aesthetic and pedagogical implications evoked by the integration of somatic movement education and contemporary dance forms, presented papers at conferences, and published articles. Click this link to download a PDF and read his Master’s Thesis:

Exploring the Space Between: The Effect of Somatic Education on Agency and Ownership Within a Collaborative Dance-Making Process

Currently he is serving as the Coordinator of the Licenciatura en Danza en la Universidad De Las Americas in Cholula/Puebla, Mexico.

As part of his work there, he initiated and co-directed Performática: Foro Internacional de Danza Contemporánea y Artes de Movimiento. This congress gathers together an international cadre of practicing dancers, choreographers, theorists, and teachers of contemporary dance and related movement arts. They convene workshops, roundtable discussions and performances with the goal of facilitating international and intercultural exchange of dance practices, knowledge, theory, and culture as related to discourse of bodily movement, expression, and philosophy

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