Dance Institute

Now in its 19th year, Dance Institute was established to assist young dancers in their pursuit of a comprehensive dance education. Dancers will be introduced to the U-M Department of Dance, one of the top pre-professional training programs in the country. The program is set on the U-M Ann Arbor campus where dancers gain an excellent pre-college dance experience in a lively university setting.

U-M Faculty Director: Professor Robin Wilson

Co-director: Jillian Hopper

July 15 – 28, 2018

Applications closed for 2018

The intensive dance training program provides an immersion in a diverse range of dance styles with dynamic dance professionals. Daily classes are offered in a variety of dance techniques that emphasize both performance and the creative aspects of dance. The Institute culminates in an informal dance performance featuring student composition studies and faculty works set on institute participants.

Rounding out the daily dance classes and workshops, there are evening and weekend educational and recreational activities. Class offerings and workshops include:

  • Modern Dance
  • Ballet
  • Jazz/Hip Hop
  • African/Afro-Caribbean
  • Repertory
  • Improvisation
  • Composition
  • Dance in College
  • Origins of Jazz Dance
  • Injury Prevention
  • Dance History
  • Pilates
  • Yoga

Written Requirements – All Applicants (Upload)

  1. Resume: Upload a resume giving details of your training and/or experience in music and dance.
  2. Photograph: Upload a color or black and white photograph
  3. Recommendation: Invite a current dance teacher to write a confidential letter of recommendation addressing your dance abilities and personal characteristic. To invite a recommender, submit your recommender’s email address, when prompted, on the audition upload link. Once you submit your audition (by selecting Final Submit), the recommender will receive a notification and link to use for sending your confidential recommendation. E-mailed submissions will not be accepted.

Performance Requirements

Audition in-person in Ann Arbor, OR upload a recorded audition.

In-person Audition (Ann Arbor)

  • Saturday, February 24, 2018
  • U-M Dance Building, Studio A, 1310 N University Court, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (Central Campus)
  • The audition will consist of a ninety-minute modern dance class. Dancers should wear footless tights and leotards for the audition. E-mail confirmation of your audition date will be sent once all application materials are received and processed.
  • Applicants auditioning in-person must also complete an uploaded decision desk profile. Upload a photo in lieu of the performance file.

Recorded Audition (Upload)

If not attending an in-person audition, submit five short videos following these specifications and as demonstrated in the instructional video.

Introductory Section (upload one 15 to 30 second video)

  • A brief close-up shot in which you state your full name, current city, state, and country of residence.
  • A brief description of your training and background in dance including current teachers, genres of dance you are currently studying or have studied, and years of dance training in each genre.

Performance Section

Exercise 1: Ballet (upload video – 1 minute maximum)

Choose ONE of the ballet combinations (traveling tendu with pirouette, adagio, or petit and grand allegro) as demonstrated in the video. Show ONE side only.

Exercise 2: Modern (upload video – 1 minute maximum)

Choose ONE of the traveling combinations as demonstrated in the video. Show ONE side only.

Exercise 3: Choice (upload video – 1 minute maximum)

Choose EITHER one additional ballet OR one modern combination of your choice.

Solo (upload ONE 1-minute video)

Perform a contemporary solo, either during a recital or from material from a recital; do NOT perform a ballet or pointe work solo.

Video Preparation suggestions

  • Make sure there is adequate lighting.
  • Wear appropriate dance attire that will show clean lines: leotard and tights or unitard (for both male/female applicants.
  • Your entire body should be in view at all times. Refrain from close-ups.
  • Music may be live or recorded.
  • Recital excerpts should be close enough to really see your work. If you are a member of an ensemble, please clearly indicated who you are in the performance (e.g. second from the left in purple dress.) The excerpt should show your level of technique and passion for dance.


Application Fee

$75 non-refundable


$2,150 (two week session)

Tuition fee includes instruction, room and board, and materials specific to each program. Final tuition payment must be received 30 days from notification of acceptance into the program, but no later than May 1, 2018, or the student’s acceptance may be cancelled. Payments should be made by credit card (preferred method), check or money order payable to The University of Michigan.

Enrollment Deposit

Admitted students are required to submit a $200 deposit to secure their enrollment ($500 deposit for Musical Theatre Workshop and Center Stage Strings.) Enrollment deposits are due approx. two weeks from the date of acceptance notification. Enrollment deposits will be credited against the tuition balance.

Cancellation Fees

Students who are offered admission but choose not to attend must notify the MPulse office in writing within two weeks of the acceptance notification. If a student needs to withdraw from MPulse after full or partial tuition has been paid, a written request is required and the tuition paid will be refunded in the following amounts:

  • Prior to May 1: All tuition paid will be refunded minus the non-refundable deposit
  • From May 1 until June 1: All tuition paid will be refunded minus 50% of total tuition due
  • From June 1 until June 24: All tuition paid will be refunded minus 75% of total tuition due
  • After June 24, if a student withdraws, no refund will be given