Culture

Boise State offers dance classes for the beginner and advanced student alike

Photo by Mackenzie Hudson

Boise State offers dance classes for those interested through their dance minor program. The dance program welcomes any students from any major, according to Marla Hansen, director of the dance minor program. 

Hansen teaches all the classical ballet and pointe technique classes, as well as the Movement and Dance for the Performing Artist class, where students learn all types of the athletic art form. In musical theatre, fight scene choreography and repertory courses, students can choreograph their own piece and showcase it in a performance. 

“It’s a diverse, comprehensive program with a variety of classes and levels, despite being only a minor,” Hansen said.

The program offers many opportunities to its dancers, according to Lemuel Reagan, a student of the program and a senior theatre major. 

“The program is small but it has some of the best teachers in Idaho,” Raegan said. “As a whole, it’s rigorous and rewarding. It’s a pity it hasn’t been expanded.” 

The dance program wants students to experience all the benefits dance provides for the body, mind, and spirit, according to Hansen. There are multiple beginner classes to get a new dance student started, which are varied in skill level so that a student can choose which class they think will best suit them and their interests. 

Anne Milner, a student of the dance program and a sophomore nursing major, encourages students who are interested in trying a beginner class to take advantage of those offered through the university.

“Don’t be afraid or intimidated, it’s a welcoming environment and you certainly won’t be the only beginner student. You’ll see huge improvements and you won’t be the same person you were before,” Milner said.

According to Milner, Hansen is ensuring students get a chance to perform through a live-stream, which is where the student’s hard work pays off, even in the current online and virtual setting.

“The incredible opportunities are one of the best benefits of the dance program at BSU,” Reagan said. 

Internships are available at Idaho Dance Theatre, where people can be choreographed by professionals, according to Raegan who was able to perform during TreeFort due to the opportunity.

Although dance is about performance, proper technique and knowledge of the craft, dance is also fun and a great stress reliever, especially during these difficult and confusing times, according to Hansen. She wants people to remember to put on music and move. 

“Dance is difficult to do alone, so it’s been extremely challenging lately, last semester included. It’s going to be hard this semester, adapting to a new style of class that won’t come close to a class we knew before COVID-19. I want people to stay healthy so we can keep dancing,” Hansen said. 

Reagan’s advice to beginner dance students is to have fun with the classes.

“Look like a fool,” Reagan said. “People are going to judge you anyway, so just go for it because if you stay safe, you will never do anything worth doing.” 

The dance classes exist under the Theatre, Film, and Creative Writing Department. Students can contact Hansen with any questions they may have at mhansen@boisestate.edu.

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