When people think about careers in dance, they may think only about being a performer, choreographer, or teacher. However, dance includes many exciting professional possibilities. Today’s dance community is made up of diverse professionals working as artists, writers and academics, teachers, technologists, and body care professionals. Not only are dance careers diverse, but they all require various skills and a resourceful, forward-thinking, often entrepreneurial spirit.
1. Community Dance
This comprises working for the community as a workshop leader or teacher. This career usually includes working in a specific geographical area as part of regional arts and community agencies teaching, choreographing and organizing dance programmes and projects. They usually work with a range of groups which may include young people, people with disabilities, the elderly as well as schools.
Community dance provides essential opportunities for people to express themselves artistically in kinesthetic ways, releasing their creativity physically.
Community dance is a extensive range of activities that bring dance artists in contact with the public: local dance classes, dance in public settings, dance with older people, dance and youth, dance with caregivers and toddlers, dance artists in schools, dance in hospitals, mixed skill dance, dance artists-in-residency, master classes, open rehearsals, dance as education.
2. Dance Administration/Management
As the dance industry develops there is a need for people to organize and manage all the activities related with dance. The Administrator organizes performance tours and outreach programs. Also, the Administrator is responsible for the financial aspects, business and legal problems. This could comprise working for dance companies, in theatres, regional arts/dance groups and the many dance organizations around the country which set up and manage seasonal festivals and community dance projects.
3. Dance Notation
Dance Notation is the method which offers choreographers and dancers with a “choreographic score” by recording movement using symbols in order to analyze, understand dance and conserve dances for the future. There are two main systems of recording movement: Labanotation and Benesh Notation.
Some journalists work on a freelance basis writing for national newspapers as a dance critic or publications. The journalism and criticism watches the dance performances then writes analysis for a newspaper or magazine describing and\or giving an opinion about the company or individual pieces.
Many dance journalists have concluded a dance degree but many others have a general interest in the arts, have a first degree in English or Humanities topics and then decide to specialize in dance.
5. Technical Production
The technical production involves a number of jobs within the technical aspects of production in dance performances. Education is not essentially necessary to dance and there are a number of technical theatre and stage management lessons offered at theatre schools.
The technical production career includes:
- The Production Manager
- The Stage Manager
- Stage Hands
- The Electrician
- The Carpenter
- The Lighting technicians
6. Visual design
Designing the costumes or lighting for dance performances is an extremely specialized occupation. Most lighting designers work in theatres and in the performing arts usually before focused on dance and working for a specific dance company or theatre. Probably costume designers also have studied costume design at art school before developing expertise in dance.
7. Dance movement therapy
Dance therapists usually work within community groups or help people with physical, mental health and emotional difficulties through dance movement. Those working in Dance Therapy generally need to follow a Master of Arts (MA) programme after having concluded a first degree.
Dance movement therapy includes:
- A Dance Therapist
- The Physical Therapist
- The Masseuse / Masseur
- PSU-Dancers and Choreographers Job Outlook 2012 (pluginin.org)
- PSU-Emerging Artists And Networking Concerns (pluginin.org)
- An Invitation to Those Making the World a Better Place Through Dance (dancetherapy.wordpress.com)