Acceptance into the Modern Dance Graduate Program is determined by audition. The audition offers an opportunity for prospective students to observe our program and for faculty to assess each student’s potential for success in our program. All applicants must be accepted into both the MFA program in the Modern Dance Program and the University itself, meeting all University of Utah graduate admissions standards.
All auditions are for acceptance and scholarship consideration. Registration is from 8:30 – 9:00 am. Auditions include a technique class, improvisation session, showing of a solo choreographed by the auditionee, and an interview with the faculty. A CD player and iPod jack will be provided. Solos should be 3 minutes maximum in length. In addition, prospective graduate students are welcome to submit a video link of a group work prior to the audition. In exceptional circumstances, alternative admission procedures may be requested, including arranged visits to campus and/or video link submissions.
- Friday, February 3, 2017 (application due December 1st)
- Friday, February 24, 2017 (application due January 31)
Please notify the director of Graduate Studies, Eric Handman, by email at or telephone (801) 587-9813 as to which audition you plan on attending, or if you will be sending a video link of your dancing. If you have general questions about the auditions, the Program, or the University, please call us at (801) 581-7327 weekdays from 8 AM to 5 PM.
Applicants wishing to be considered for program scholarships and/or Graduate Assistantships in their first year are required to attend the audition, with completed application materials. While all auditions make a student applicant eligible for admission, we encourage the prospective student to audition in person. Only students auditioning in person are eligible for scholarships.
Criteria for Selection
Technique: technical ability, performance skill, alignment, dynamic projection, perceptual acuity. Improvisation: creativity, artistic daring, commitment, involvement, inventiveness, openness.
Composition: craft, movement invention and individuality of statement.
Intellectual Maturity: Articulation skills, evidence of self-motivation, openness to new ideas, ability to connect theoretical frameworks to personal experience.
Additional Application Information
1. Letters of recommendation may be submitted with your application materials or sent separately to:
Eric Handman, Director of Graduate Studies
Modern Dance Program, The University of Utah
330 South 1500 East, Rm #106
Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0280
2. The application fee of $50 may be paid by check made to the University of Utah Modern Dance Program or you can pay online with our secure payment system.
3. International students please contact the office for International Admissions at 801-581-3091 and review the guidelines here. A Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is not required for acceptance into the Program.
International students must be accepted into the University in order to be accepted into the School of Dance, Modern Dance MFA. This includes meeting or exceeding the University TOEFL requirements. International students may audition online by uploading video that demonstrates speaking about your professional interests in dance as well as why the University of Utah is your chosen school. Other necessary video content must include performed ballet class and modern dance class excerpts, performance footage of a solo of your own choreography as well as any other excerpts of dances you have choreographed. Please send online links directly to Eric Handman, Director of Graduate Studies at the University of Utah School of Dance.
Students whose native language is not English are required to submit scores received on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) as part of their application. Applications are not considered complete without the test scores. Because processing, sending, and receiving TOEFL and IELTS test scores often takes several weeks, international students must schedule their examination no later than September in order to meet the Program deadlines. TOEFL and IELTS scores should be sent directly to the Director of Graduate Studies in the Modern Dance Program.