Academy for Performing Arts: Dance

  • LOCATED AT MORRIS KNOLLS HIGH SCHOOL, in Rockaway, The Academy for  Performing Arts offers a major in Dance. Students with this major will work with master teachers and professional choreographers.


    Click HERE to check out the Performing Arts Video to learn more! 

Career Field -Performing Arts: Dance

  • Career Pathways in the Academy for Performing Arts: Dance (include but are not limited to):

    Production Managers, Digital, Video, Stage ♦ Cinematographers, Film/Video Editors ♦ Dancers ♦ Play Writers, Screen Writers, Screen Editors, Script Writers ♦ Directors and Coaches, Performers, actors, Musicians ♦ Make-Up Artists and Costume Designers ♦ Stagecraft Designers, Lighters, Sets, Sound Effects, Acoustics, Painters ♦ Composers, Conductors


    Seniors in the Academy for Performing Arts: Dance have completed internships with (including but not limited to):


    Amanda's DanceXtensions Paul Taylor Dance Company
    Dance Academy of North Jersey Performing Arts Academy
    Denville Dance Arts Center Pure Movement Dance Center
    Dream Dance Studio Soul Search Records
    Forward Motion PT Top Tier Dance Academy
    Freespace Dance Trinity Studios LLC
    Linda D'Amicos Academy of Dance West Side Dance Center
    New Jersey Dance Theatre Ensemble  




Academy Course of Study

  • 9th Grade: 

    Academy: Introduction to Dance as an Art Form

    The Introduction to Dance as an Art Form seeks to prepare serious dancers for a professional career in dance or career paths in related fields and to pursue further dance studies at the college level. This course explores dance as an art form in its many dimensions both technically and academically by introducing students to both the interpretive role of the dancer and the creative role of the choreographer through practical applications and through the study of dance history and aesthetics. Students are given a sound technical and academic foundation in a variety of dance forms and career applications with the intent that a wide base of knowledge and experiences in their art form will aid their success in the competitive and diverse workplace of contemporary professional dance. Students are trained, encouraged, and expected to develop the professional work ethic, discipline, and teamwork skills required of success in this profession. Coursework is designed to train both a versatile technical dancer, and develop an expressive artist able to communicate a broad base of themes through movement. Our intent is to develop and nurture young dance artists who are facile both in mind and body. APA dance students will gain a broad base of knowledge, skills and experiences that will pave the way for further opportunities to pursue careers in dance and theatre, as dancers, choreographers, historians, researchers, notators, dance therapists, educators, movement specialists, technical theatre artists, arts administrators and fitness-wellness practitioners.

    This course will focus on introducing Modern, Ballet, and Jazz from a technical and academic approach. Special emphasis is given on proper body mechanics, dance science, and injury prevention. The dancers will learn to move efficiently and begin to form a stronger technical foundation that can be applied to any dance technique. The basic concepts of choreography and improvisation are explored and how this creates professional dance work. An introduction to dance history is explored theoretically and practically in the classroom so that students can start to make connections to dance technique and their historical influences. Students are introduced to technology tools that help prepare the dance student for a dance career and other dance related careers. Collaboration and teamwork is integral in all of the units and is essential to the progression of the four year course of study.


    10th Grade:

    Academy: Intermediate Dance Technique, Dance Technology & Theoretical Studies

    In their second year, students will continue to explore and build on the previous year’s training through Modern Dance II, Ballet II, Jazz Dance II, Improvisation, Composition and Choreography and Repertory/Production II, Dance History/ Aesthetic Judgment and Criticism in Dance II, Movement Science for Dancers II, Dance Technology II, and Career Planning II.  Technical training emphasizes the Western theatrical dance genres of Ballet, Modern Dance, and Jazz and students are expected to gain a high degree of technical proficiency in at least one of these dance genres. Students will also have introductory experiences in a variety of styles and cultural dance forms through field trips to college programs and performances, guest artist workshops and repertory and research to enhance their movement vocabularies as well as expand their understanding of the contribution of cultural and social dance to theatrical art.


    11th Grade:

    Academy: Junior Year (Advanced Dance Technique, Choreography & Career Planning)

    Coursework builds on skills and concepts gained in previous year’s training, with increasing demands in the performance of technical skills through Modern Dance III, Ballet III, Jazz Dance III, Improvisation, Composition and Choreography and Repertory/Production III, Dance History/ Aesthetic Judgment and Criticism in Dance III, Movement Science for Dancers III, Dance Technology III, and Career Planning III.  Technique training is infused with dance science and related health science coursework to serve safe practices and career longevity. These courses are designed to assist students in developing anatomically sound movement patterns and proper alignment in the full potential range of human movement. Related coursework includes but is not limited to Laban Movement Analysis, Bartenieff Fundamentals™, Experiential Anatomy for Dancers, Nutrition for Dancers, Injury Care and Prevention, Yoga, Pilates, and experiential practice and research of Fitness/Wellness principles and methodologies.

    12th Grade:

    • College Option:  Providing students meet the academic criteria, they may attend County College of Morris for earn up to 24 credits, paid for by MCST.
    • STRUCTURED LEARNING EXPERIENCE (SLE) :  Required 120 hour Internship