Denison University

Department of Dance
Granville, OH 43023

Contact Information

Phone: 740/587-6712; Fax: 740/587-6750

Department Chair: Sandra Mathern-Smith

Contact Person: Beth White, Academic Administrative and Production Assistant
Phone: 740/587-6712


Ojeya Cruz Banks, PhD, Associate Professor – African/Diaspora technique, composition, education, cultural studies and anthropology, performance.

Sandra Mathern-Smith, MFA, Chair, Professor – modern/postmodern technique, composition, improvisation, production, choreography and performance.

Gill Wright Miller, PhD, Professor – somatics, movement analysis, cultural studies, production, feminist theory, women and the arts

Program Philosophy

The Dance Department at Denison explores the physical and intellectual connections of language, culture, and development through movement. We emphasize embodiment as a means of knowing and responding to each other and our environment. At Denison, we believe that vital dance artists and scholars develop from independent thinkers who are committed to cultivating their personal aesthetic and artistic focus, and who resourcefully engage in original research and commit to the construction of knowledge

Our mission supports the development of student artists/scholars who are informed citizens and responsible agents of change in a world where the moving arts are essential. Exposing students to a wide breadth of cutting-edge and experimental dance practices from diverse cultures and perspectives from around the world is embedded in our curriculum and ideology. The focus of our movement practices intentionally centralizes Modern/Postmodern Dance and African/African-Diaspora forms, shifting the paradigm of dance education away from a ballet-centered model. The integration of embodied practices with scholarly inquiry is integral to our mission.

Degrees Offered: BA

Undergraduate Majors: 12

Degree Requirements: 36 credits for the major; 24 credits for the minor

Faculty: 3FT plus guest artists

Academic Facilities: 2 studios, 1 shared studio, several shared classrooms, library/computer room

Production Facilities: New Eisner Center for Performing Arts housing large studio performance space with LED lighting and sound, one digital studio/performance lab, 400 seat theater proscenium space

Productions: 2 faculty/student concerts, 2 guest artist concerts per academic year

Institution Type: 4-year private liberal arts

Location: Central Ohio

Enrollment: 2,185

Annual Tuition: $50,790

Room (multiple): $7,000

Board (maximum): $5,710

Department Financial Aid: Scholarships

Other Financial Aid: (1) Denison offers generous financial aid to those in need, with a commitment to meet the financial need of all students. We also offer generous merit scholarships.  Proficiency in dance is taken into consideration for merit scholarships.  (2) Rising Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors Dance students can compete with all Fine Arts students for 20+ scholarships. (3) Academic Scholarships are equally available to dance students. (4) Generous work-study possibilities