Print Version

Effective: Summer 2016

Advisory: Advisory: This course is included in the Dance Performance family of activity courses; UC will accept for transfer credit either DANC 9 or THTR 38/38A, not both.
Grade Type: Letter Grade, the student may select Pass/No Pass
Not Repeatable.
FHGE: Non-GE Transferable: CSU/UC
1 hour lecture, 3 hours laboratory. (48 hours total per quarter)

Student Learning Outcomes -
  • Develop necessary movement skills to be proficient in an area of theatre.
  • Create movement sequences to physicalize a scene into action.
Description -
Principles and practice of body awareness and movement for actors focusing on movement derived from jazz, musical theater, contemporary dance. Emphasis on alignment and centering, concentration and relaxation, development of the kinesthetic sense and exploration of the body/mind connection for the actor.

Course Objectives -
The student will be able to:
  1. identify habitual patterns of movement as a base for acquisition of dance technique.
  2. use correct body placement and alignment in specialized activities as they relate to scene study, dramatic situations, and character development.
  3. evaluate principles of body-mind continuum.
  4. apply principles of body awareness, movement principles, and character development to dance technique.
  5. analyze and recognize techniques of dance in performance.
Special Facilities and/or Equipment -
  1. Theater or dance studio. Sound system, television-video monitor for multi-media presentations.
  2. Dance or character, jazz and ballet shoe
  3. Exercise clothing

Course Content (Body of knowledge) -
  1. Visualization and activation of kinetic awareness
    1. identification of habitual patterns of movement
    2. see the self with outer and inner eye/body assessment
  2. Observation and application of the use and misuse of the body
    1. body posture and proper alignment
    2. maintaining center
    3. alignment and its relationship to efficient movement
    4. work of Rudolph Laban and Mary Wigman
    5. alignment and its relationship to aesthetic movement
    6. the use of center/off-center movement in dance and drama
  3. Development of physical techniques
    1. practice of approaches to standing, sitting, lying down, turning, jumping, alling, elevating, lifting, reaching, bending, and twisting
    2. practice of approaches to specialized physical and dramatic situations requiring transcendence of gravity, quick changes, change of direction, fall and recovery, speed, agility, and rebound techniques
  4. Development of balance and relaxation techniques
    1. recognize the body-mind connection
    2. relationship of body alignment and concentration
    3. relationship of body alignment and balance
    4. attain a state of physical relaxation and mental alertness
    5. relaxation techniques
    6. breathing techniques
  5. Body awareness in action: movement for the actor
    1. rhythms of the human body
    2. finding and maintaining parallel and turn-out position
    3. practice of passive and active lengthening, stretching, and strengthening
  6. Analysis of psycho-physical techniques of selected live and televised dance/theater performances
    1. role of choreographer
    2. understanding and working with musical score
    3. structuring a dance step
    4. role of movement in interpreting a character
    5. before, during, and after the performance
Methods of Evaluation -
  1. Written tests on terminology and theory of dance
  2. Written paper on topic of student's choice and/or journal
  3. Student final project presented to class
  4. Instructor's evaluation of student's attitude, postural movement, growth of concentration skills, and quality of participation
Representative Text(s) -
Tharp, Twyla. The Collaborative Habit: Life Lessons for working together. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster, 2009.
Ryan, Walter J. Technical Manual and Dictionary of Classical Ballet. 2011.

Disciplines -
Method of Instruction -
  1. Lecture presentations and classroom discussion using the language and vocabulary of dance.
  2. Cooperative learning exercises
  3. Laboratory and Discussion
Lab Content -
  1. Demonstration and practice of basic techniques from a broad range of dance styles from Ballet and Jazz to Tap and Contemporary Dance for the Actor
  2. Demonstration and practice of fundamental techniques of movement for the development of character, motivation, and gesture in a physical scene.
  3. Demonstration and practice of proper body alignment and awareness in all scene studies and movement exercises.
Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing and Outside of Class Assignments -
  1. Written critique of a live dance or musical theatre performance
  2. Optional writing exercises based on recommended reading