From Shani Collins-Achille, Associate Professor of Dance:

Dear Prospective Student,

I am pleased to learn that you are interested in the Dance Department at Connecticut College. I have devoted almost a decade to this department and look forward to the growth each new student brings to this program. Part of the Dance Faculty since 2009, I currently serve as Associate Professor and the Chair of the Dance Department and I welcome you to our community. I know you will find our department to be one of the finest professional and supportive dance environments within a liberal arts setting. Our highly qualified, inspirational and attentive faculty members work closely with the students to provide an intensive dancing and learning experience. In addition, numerous guest artists from New York City and beyond provide invaluable performance opportunities and state-of-the-art teaching during their residencies here. David Dorfman Dance, is the company-in-residence at the College. David’s New York-based company spends several weeks at the college each year working with student dancers, performing its repertory, rehearsing new work and collaborating with the college as a whole.

Our department has a rich history, with a national reputation for artistic, creative and intellectual strength. This coming June “...and I will never, ever let you down.” a work by Rachael Lieblein-Jurbala ‘19 was chosen to be performed at the American College Dance Association’s 2018 National Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., which we are so, very excited about!

Our dance majors and minors study Modern, Post-Modern, Ballet, West-African, Afro-Caribbean and Hip Hop Technique, Choreography, Improvisation, Partnering, Dance History, Dance Writing, Dance and Technology, and Music for Dance, among others. All dance students gain a rigorous liberal arts education through through their studies. We look for dedicated dancers and college citizens, with a variety of interests, who are willing to explore and develop themselves technically, artistically, creatively and intellectually. Our educational mission is to prepare students to enter the profession and life with vision, breadth of knowledge, and depth of understanding.

An audition is required in order to major in dance, but no audition is necessary for the dance minor. The auditions for high school seniors will be held Monday, October 8, 2018 and Monday, November 12, 2018 at Connecticut College. The dance audition consists of attending a technique class, a ballet barre in ballet slippers, with modern, West African and Afro-Caribbean combinations, a short improvisation, and showing an individual piece (1 1/2 - 2 minutes) of any style. For further information please visit the Dance Department website at

We hope you will visit us at the College. A visit provides an excellent opportunity for you to become acquainted with our college environment and the specifics of our unique department. We are certainly glad to meet with you, give you a tour, and answer any questions you might have concerning life at Connecticut College. We can also put you in touch with a current dance major to provide you with more insights from a student perspective. If you’d like to schedule a dance audition, please call the Dance Department office at (860) 439-2830 or email us at


Shani Collins-Achille,
Associate Professor of Dance
Department Chair