The BFA Dance program at Peabody prepares students to be at the forefront of dance innovation through performance, choreographic and critical historical and theoretical exploration. Studying dance at the Johns Hopkins University, one of the world’s premier research institutions, gives students the opportunity to make connections between the study of dance, science, technology, and the humanities. Students take courses in Modern Dance, African Expressions, ballet, somatic approaches to movement, choreography, and dance as social justice; perform in a pre-professional student dance company; and collaborate with world-renowned guest artists. Peabody graduates can pursue careers as performers, choreographers, teachers, researchers, arts administrators, and community organizers.

At the end of this program, students will be able to:

  • Synthesize technical mastery of studio instruction and feedback into an expressive performance informed by a conceptual understanding of the medium.
  • Communicate complex dance ideas and concepts to students and general audiences.
  • Teach technique and repertoire with a pedagogy informed by contemporary models of movement education and somatic therapies that protect students from injury.
  • Lead projects that locate a role for dance for a variety and plurality of individuals and communities.
  • Understand and argue for a role for dance and movement beyond the traditional boundaries of performance and into the arena of social justice and biomechanical research.

We learn, live, move, and play on the unceded lands of the Piscataway and Susquehannock nations. We acknowledge the settler-colonial history and systemic inequities that continue to shape the present and future of indigenous people who reside in Baltimore City, including Piscataway, Lumbee, and Eastern Band of Cherokee community members. As artists, teachers, and students, we are responsible for engaging in a multifaceted dialogue about our complacency as participants in and beneficiaries of settler-colonial ways of knowing and being. This public acknowledgment extends the ongoing conversation in our practice, history, and theory courses.

Program Highlights

Peabody Dance Ensemble: Students have an opportunity to perform in the Peabody Dance Ensemble; a pre-professional dance company showcasing original and repertory work by faculty and guest artists. The ensemble performs in annual concerts and travels to festivals, conferences, and community residencies.

Guest Artist Residencies: Master dance artists create original works and/or re-set existing works on students. Guest artists also teach master classes and offer lectures touching on the important role dance has played in shaping the course of an engaged civic life.

Apprenticeships and Internships: Pre-professional preparation at Peabody is designed to give students practical experience for success after graduation. Under the direction of a faculty member (depending on interest), students are placed with professional dance companies, choreographers, dance studios, arts organizations and other community partners.

Capstone Dance Project: The Capstone Project gives students the opportunity to pursue independent, innovative, and interdisciplinary research that culminates with a presentation of a self-produced concert, dance film, lecture, or panel discussion.

Admission Requirements

Previous movement experience recommended.


Brinae Ali
Tap, Music for Dance

Alexandria “Brinae Ali” Bradley, born and raised in Flint, Michigan is an interdisciplinary artist who believes in using the power of the arts to transform the conditions of the human spirit.

Salvador Barajas
Critical Dance Studies


Glenna Batson

For more than five decades, Glenna Batson has drawn from multiple disciplines as catalysts for teaching, research, mentoring, advocacy, and artistic and personal growth. Batson brings a trans-disciplinary perspective to embodied learning through a synthesis of dance, Somatics, embodied cognitive neuroscience and neuro-rehabilitation medicine.

danah bella
Functional Awareness® Movement Practice, Yoga, Progressing Ballet Technique, Artistic Director of Peabody Dance Ensemble

danah bella is the artistic director of d a n a h b e l l a DanceWorks, a modern dance company focused on reclaiming evocative movement as social practice. bella has performed and presented her work throughout the country.

Tiffanie Carson
Jazz, Contemporary Commercial Dance Styles

Tiffanie Carson is an educator, mentor, and performance artist. She earned her Master of Fine Arts in Dance from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, and completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Performance at Chapman University.

Hui-Chuan Chen
Accompanist, Ballet

A native of Taiwan, pianist Hui-Chuan Chen began piano lessons at age four and made her debut performance at six. As a successful soloist, chamber musician, collaborative pianist and educator, Chen has traveled and performed widely throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia.

Diedre Dawkins
African Expressions, Dance of the African Diaspora, Dance Pedagogy, Horton, Director of AileyCamp Baltimore

Diedre Dawkins is a 2003 Bessie Award winner and founder of Dance is Healing mentoring for middle school girls through dance. Dawkins graduated from the New York City High School of the Performing Arts...

Mike Esperanza
Artist in Residence (Spring 2024)

Mike Esperanza is an acclaimed artist from New York City who has established a national presence in the graphic design and dance communities. As a designer, his work has been recognized in publications such as Print, Communication Arts, and Graphis.

Jabari Exum
Music for Dance; Composer Accompanist, Modern

Jabari Exum is an electrifying performing artist born and raised in Washington, DC. He is a skilled percussionist in the West African / Latin tradition and is a prolific writer and performer of Hip-Hop music. Since 1997 Exum has also been a pioneering artist in a movement called “Hip-Hop Theater.”

Robin Gilmore

Robin Gilmore, MFA, ATI, is an internationally recognized Alexander Technique teacher and somatic specialist with 40+ years experience teaching in universities, conferences, organizations, and private practice.

Gayanne Grossman

Gayanne Grossman is a dancer, physical therapist, author, researcher, and a performing arts medicine specialist. Grossman is adjunct faculty for the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University.

Laura Halm Hamilton

Laura Halm Hamilton is a dancer, teacher, and choreographer. A Baltimore native, she received her BFA in dance from the Juilliard School in 2002. She had the pleasure of performing with Hubbard Street 2, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, and as a soloist with the Ballett des Saarländischen Staatstheater in Saarbrücken, Germany.

Kelly Hirina
Countertechnique, Choreography, Double Skin/Double Mind

Kelly Hirina is a certified teacher of both Countertechnique, created by Anouk van Dijk and Double Skin/Double Mind, created by Emio Greco and Pieter C. Scholten. She has been teaching these methods at the Lucia Marthas Institute for Performing Arts (Amsterdam) and in her role as the artistic coordinator of ICKamsterdam’s academy.

Colette Krogol
Modern Dance Practice, Dance Production, Contact Improvisation

Colette Krogol (she/her) is a Cuban-American artist originally from Miami, Florida. She is a choreographer, director, dancer, filmmaker, and educator. As the Co-Artistic Director of Orange Grove Dance (OGD) her creative work exists at the intersection of dance, design, and film.

Andrea Lasner
Pilates, Resident Physical Therapist in the Johns Hopkins Rehabilitation Network Clinic

Andrea N. Lasner is a licensed physical therapist and clinical specialist for The Johns Hopkins Hospital and The Johns Hopkins Outpatient Rehabilitation Network Clinic for Performing Artists at the Peabody Institute, and The Johns Hopkins Outpatient Rehabilitation Network Clinic at Green Spring Station.

Michael Nickerson-Rossi
Business of Dance

Founding Artistic Director of Nickerson-Rossi Dance, Palm Springs International Dance Festival, and Palm Springs Dance Academy, Michael Nickerson-Rossi’s choreography is filled with complex intricacies that unravel through a beautifully orchestrated mixture of artistic movement and emotional freedom.

Christopher Pennix
Ballet, Rehearsal Director of Peabody Dance Ensemble

Christopher Pennix leads a dynamic career in dance, teaching, opera, and fitness as a certified yoga and cycle instructor.

Chris Pierorazio
Composer Accompanist, Modern

Baltimore native Chris Pierorazio began his formal studies at the age of six with Peabody Conservatory alum Mark Jones at the Baltimore School for Drumming, where he studied until 2005. While there, he studied drum set in all genres including advanced jazz studies, modern rock and funk techniques, Latin style as well as classical and rudimental snare drum studies.

Kristen S. Stevenson

Kristen S. Stevenson studied with The Washington Ballet, the Peabody Preparatory, The Julliard School, The Dance Theater of Harlem, The Donetsk Ballet, and The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.

Ayal Yariv

Ayal Yariv works as a piano accompanist at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. He is also the regular pianist at Pilgrim Lutheran Church, Fairview United Methodist Church and the church services at Glen Meadows Retirement Community, and is a company musician at the Maryland Renaissance Festival, where he plays period woodwind instruments.

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