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Graduate Program in Dance - MFA

MFA in Dance > Degree Requirements

| Program Overview | MFA Degree Requirements | Fields: Choreography and Dramaturgy | How to Apply |


The York University MFA program in Dance features two specializations: choreography and dance dramaturgy. At the end of the first year students will select an area of specialization (either choreography or dance dramaturgy) and will focus in this area for their thesis. 

The MFA in Dance is a full time program of study completed by Thesis only. Part time study, completion by Major Research Paper (MRP) or Coursework are not options.

First Year Courses
First year graduate students will participate in courses that focus on choreography, creativity, movement observation and dance dramaturgy, as well as one elective course.

Students will take four core courses:

plus one 3.0 elective within the Dance MA program or a cognate course.

Second Year Thesis
Upon completion of coursework, students will conduct research in one of the two fields (Choreography or Dance Dramaturgy) to create their final Thesis Project. The Thesis will include both a practical creative component and an extended written paper and support materials as follows:

More about the fields, and examples of potential research topics >>


Dance Practice
All Dance MFA students are required to participate in a physical practice designed to facilitate their understanding of the body and further their creative research. This is a compulsory, non-credit requirement in the spirit of professional dancers taking daily morning class. It is imperative that students develop physical practices that support their particular aesthetics. In consultation with their thesis supervisor, students will determine their own discipline and maintain, document and report on their practice throughout their studies.  They may choose to take class in the Department’s undergraduate program, or study with a particular mentor or master teacher, or take class with other professional dancers within any of Toronto’s diverse dance traditions.  Normally students will devote one to two hours daily to their physical practice and meet once a month with their supervisor to discuss their progress.

MFA Colloquiums
MFA students are required to attend eight colloquia or workshops over the five terms of their study. Colloquia topics may include:

Various studio workshops in such things as Alternative Bodywork, Social Dance, Butoh, Physical Theatre as well as classes with guests from Toronto’s many master teachers from various cultures.

Dance Production
Over the five terms MFA students will be required to complete one hundred and fifty (150) hours of production, rehearsal direction, design, and administrative work related to the creation and mounting of theatrical dance events. This works out to thirty hours (30) for each of the five terms. The MFA requirement will be organized by the Director of the MFA Programme in Dance, the Dance Department’s Performance Committee
Chair and the Department of Dance’s Production and Design Professors.