University of Roehampton by Beth

Beth in Imminent- Third Year Screendance by Natasha Carmichael. Photo: Captured from video by Natasha Carmichael

I am a third-year student about to graduate from the BA (Hons) Dance Studies course, now BA (Hons) Dance, at the University of Roehampton in South West London.

Throughout the programme, I have been exposed to new ideas of what dance is and can be, both physically and theoretically. Studying dance at Roehampton encourages students to not just think about dance practice, but the way we think about dance as a whole. In the first year you are exposed to daily dance practice alongside choreography and theoretical modules looking at the culture, history and science behind the dance. For the following two years, each dance student has the opportunity to cater the course for themselves, selecting modules that interest you and your development. Alongside technique, in the third year I have had the opportunity to study modules such as Dance Science and Somatics, Teaching Artist (including a placement with Pre-Amici Inclusive Dance Group), and Dance Movement Psychotherapy Fundamentals. Other students opted to select modules such as Performance and Repertoire, Screendance, Lighting and various choreography modules. Students have worked with various choreographers including; Akram Khan, Matthias Sperling, Rosemary Lee, Gaby Agis and alum Shaun Dillon.

Roehampton also offers a BFA in dance, which is the first of its kind in the UK. The BFA runs alongside the BA for the first three years, but the additional fourth year provides students with the option to do placements.

Alongside the course, I have been a consistently involved in Roehampton Dance Society (of which I am currently the Vice-President), Footprint Dance Festival and Roehampton Dance Platform. I am also the programme representative for third year students and have performed in Screendance and Process to Product choreography modules. There are opportunities to become a member of Third Row Dance Company and participate in the Dance Competition team.

The past three years have been influential in my development as not only someone about to begin work in the dance industry but also as a person. Roehampton Dance champions individuality, creativity, inclusivity and having a voice as an artist, dancer, teacher, researcher, choreographer to name a few. The academics and tutors at Roehampton have encouraged me to engage in external activities, such as the opportunity to be a One Dance UK Ambassador and a Volunteer for Dance for Parkinson’s classes, and have introduced me to a supportive network of Alumni that I will have for the foreseeable future. I feel confident and ready to begin my career in the dance industry and postgraduate study after my time at Roehampton.

Roehampton currently offers the following dance courses for undergraduate study; Dance (BA), Dance (BFA) and Dance and Health Advocacy *New for Autumn 2020 (BA). The postgraduate dance courses available at Roehampton are; Choreography (MFA), Choreography and Performance (MRes), Dance Anthropology (MA), Dance Philosophy and History (MA), Dance Politics and Sociology (MA), Choreomundus (MA), Dance Practice *New for Autumn 2019 (MFA) and a PhD Programme.

Find out more about dance at the University of Roehampton here