Department of Dance

BFA in Classical Chinese Dance

The BFA in Classical Chinese Dance program is the first of its kind in the United States. No other institution in the country offers degrees with this specialization. Fei Tian’s BFA program is also unique worldwide. Students at Fei Tian College pursue an education that is bilingual and bicultural, while also gaining a foundation in the liberal arts and sciences. Students also have ample opportunity to practice their art form both on campus and through practicums.

Classical Chinese dance is one of the most comprehensive dance systems in the world. The proposed program offers systematic professional training in classical Chinese dance, with an emphasis in performance, pedagogy, or production. The two major components of Chinese dance performance are the technique and the spirit (shen yun or inner meaning). The technical courses in the program in combination with the series of courses on shen yun help students acquire the techniques as well as an understanding of the spirit of Chinese dance. Learning about the spirit aspect of Chinese dance feeds into the unique intellectual and cultural atmosphere of the College.

Objectives of the BFA in Classical Chinese Dance

  • To offer professional training to aspiring students who seek careers in performance, choreography, teaching, or stage production in classical Chinese dance;
  • To cultivate in students a deep understanding and appreciation of the inner meaning (also known as shen yun or spirit) of Chinese dance as well as the rich cultural heritage associated with it;
  • To nurture in students a genuine appreciation for the differences and commonalities between Chinese performing arts and their Western counterparts, whereby the students can be competent facilitators in cross-cultural communication through dance;
  • To enable students to achieve the language proficiency, both in Chinese and in English, needed in everyday life as well as in academic discourse about Chinese performing arts;
  • To cultivate in students an understanding of the integral connection between artistic beauty and sound moral character; and
  • To guide and advise students in their process of developing the maturity and integrity necessary for building and sustaining lifelong interpersonal relationships.

These objectives are consistent with the College’s general objectives of preserving, developing, and propagating traditional arts and cultures. Besides the dance training, the intellectual emphasis of the program enables the graduates to be effective ambassadors of cross-cultural communication in the 21st century.

Curriculum

The classical Chinese dance curriculum at Fei Tian College develops the three main components of classical Chinese Dance: form (shen fa), bearing (shen yun), and techniques (ji qiao). Many technical courses in the program simultaneously help students acquire the form, technique, and a deep understanding of the bearing of Chinese dance.

The core courses in the BFA program comprise intensive training in six areas:

  • Fundamentals of Classical Chinese Dance (fundamental skills and training);
  • Shen yun (a unique component of Chinese dance training);
  • Special Techniques in Chinese Dance (such as tumbling, twisting, and turning);
  • Chinese ethnic and folk dances;
  • Repertoires; and
  • Necessary artistic background.

Graduation Requirements

The graduation requirement for the BFA in Classical Chinese Dance is a minimum of 129 credits with a minimum GPA of 2.5. The 129 credits include 70 credits of core courses in classical Chinese dance, 20 credits of courses in the area of concentration, 9 credits of dance or dance-related electives, and 33 credits of general education courses.

Emphasis Requirements

The Bachelor of Fine Arts Program in Classical Chinese Dance has three emphases:

  • Performance and Choreography
  • Dance Pedagogy
  • Dance Production

Students choose one of these three emphases at the end of their sophomore year.

Dance Pedagogy Emphasis Requirements (18 Credits)

Course Number Title Cr
Spring 3
DAN352 Classical Chinese Dance Pedagogy- peer observation 2
Fall 3
DAN311B Dance Pedagogy B 3
DAN341 Policies and Standards in Dance Education 1
Spring 4
DAN410 Educational Psychology in Context 2
DAN411 Dance in Education 1
DAN413 Principles of Guidance & Pedagogy 3
Fall 4
DAN403 Repertory and Analysis 2
DAN452 Dance Teaching Practicum 4

Dance Production Emphasis Requirements (18 Credits)

Course Number Title Cr
Spring 3
LAS370A Drawing* 2
DAN330 Lighting Design 3
Fall 3
LAS370B Drawing and Rendering for Theater 2
DAN331 Scenic and Set Design 3
Spring 4
DAN432 Costume Design 2
DAN453 Independent Study in Dance Production 2
Fall 4
Select one of the following
DAN450 Research Paper 4
DAN451 Senior Production 4
DAN455 Advanced Dance Practicum and World Cultures (Spring term only) 4

*Students may earn credit for the course by passing AP Studio Art exam, IB Visual Arts exam, or Fei Tian College’s course exam

Performance and Choreography Emphasis Requirements (18 Credits)

Course Number Title Cr
Spring 3
MUS101A Ear Training A 1
DAN321R Repertory and Rehearsal II (repeat once) 1.5
Fall 3
DAN321R Repertory and Rehearsal II (repeat once) 2
Spring 4
DAN412A Advanced Choreography 2
DAN421R Repertory and Rehearsal III (repeat once) 2
DAN422 Music Literature in classical Chinese 3
Fall 4
DAN412B Independent Study in Choreography 2
DAN421R Repertory and Rehearsal III (repeat once) 2
Select one of the following
DAN450 Research Paper 4
DAN451 Senior Production 4
DAN455 Advanced Dance Practicum and World Cultures (Spring term only) 4