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Performance and Scholarship Opportunities

Drexel Dance Ensemble

The Drexel Dance Ensemble is a professional caliber dance company presenting two fully-produced concerts in the Mandell Theater each year, performing for more than 1000 people each season. Students participating in the 50-member ensemble are given the opportunity to explore their artistry through working with professional choreographers, both faculty and guests artists, as well as a selection of student choreographers. The diversity of choreographic talent promises a show with dimension and unique perspectives on contemporary and classical dance forms. Entrance into this company is open to any dancers beyond their freshman year by audition twice yearly.

One of the more notable components of the Drexel Dance Ensemble is the student choreography. Each year, multiple students are selected and mentored by faculty to create original works on their peers, and experience the process of working with a staff of theater professionals, including a lighting designer, and four costume designers creating original costumes for each piece. At the end of the year, four exceptional student choreographers are invited to reconstruct their works on the FreshDance Ensemble the following year, allowing their dances to have an extended life in our repertory.

Participation in the dance ensembles allows for the students of Drexel to connect to the artistic community, indulge in the creative process, and perhaps, expand their cultural scope. Recently, Drexel dancers represented the university, and our country, at the 45th Annual Singapore Youth Festival at the National University of Singapore. Invited by Singapore’s Ministry of Education, the 12 dancers selected from both ensemble companies performed Sea of Glass, choreographed by dance faculty member Olive Prince, on July 20, 2011. Click here to watch a video of this international experience.

For more information, contact Olive Prince at


FreshDance, the freshman year dance company, provides a dynamic and professional performance opportunity for the incoming class of Drexel University. Students participating in the 25-member will explore their artistry through working with professional choreographers, both faculty and guests artists, as well as some exceptional student choreographers, and present the dance pieces in a fully-produced concert in Mandell Theater twice a year.

For more information, contact Olive Prince at

Community Engaged Movement Partnerships Touring Ensemble

For students inspired to work with young audiences, the Community Engaged Movement Partnerships Touring Ensemble provides an exciting and satisfying opportunity to utilize dance as a conduit to teaching and connecting with children.

Drexel Community Engaged Movement Partnerships , comprised of dance students at Drexel University, offers free assembly programs to elementary school students across Philadelphia. Ensemble members perform for the students, lead a series of interactive movement games, and facilitate a shared conversation for the young movers. The Touring Ensemble models its curriculum after the South Street Dance Company’s Young Audiences Ensemble created by Ellen Forman.

Learning and developing the performance material occurs during the Fall term, and touring to the schools happens in the Winter and Spring terms on Friday mornings, making the Touring Ensemble a year-long commitment. It is a rewarding experience with 20-40 performances, and an opportunity to give many elementary and middle school students valuable exposure to modern dance and a meaningful exploration of movement, as well as allowing each ensemble member to discover and cultivate their own talents as a performers and educators.

For more information about upcoming dance performances and performance opportunities see our upcoming events page.

For more information on the Community Based Learning Program, contact Program Director, Valerie Ifill,