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Contemporary Dance

Within the Junior Conservatoire Contemporary Dance programme, there are two pathways, skills development and performance. To apply for the contemporary dance programme, please click here.

Contemporary Dance: Skills Development

Our Junior Conservatoire Contemporary Dance Skills Development Programme is for young people aiming for a career as a professional dancer.

We aim to provide excellent tuition and guidance in supporting our future contemporary dance artists in Scotland. It is our hope that students go on to study in a full time dance training programme.

As a contemporary dance student at the Junior Conservatoire you will have an exciting programme of classes and workshops aimed at developing your technical skills and nurturing your unique artistry.

The course director will help to make connections between studying dancers and practising dance artists across Scotland, creating opportunity and support while building awareness of the greater landscape of dance practice internationally.

What you will study:

  • Your core dance classes will focus on the foundations of contemporary dance technique, release and floor work. (scroll to the bottom of this page for more information)
  • Together with your programme of classes, you will be set individual targets in strength, flexibility, stamina and fitness which you will be encouraged to practice in your own time.
  • You will develop your solo and group performance skills, building confidence to both perform and take part in the creative process of dance making for various performances throughout the year.
  • You will be encouraged, under experienced artistic direction, to build confidence in improvisation, creative collaboration and choreography.

Contemporary Dance: Performance

The RCS Young Contemporary Dance Company brings together a diverse group of dancers who will rehearse weekly under expert artistic direction in the creation and performance of new and existing contemporary dance works. Company members will perform and collaborate throughout the year while working with some of the country’s finest contemporary dance artists and choreographers.

The young company will represent the Royal Conservatoire Of Scotland in building and demonstrating artistic excellence while making connections with the wider world of contemporary dance practice in Scotland and internationally.

What experience do I need to audition for the Company?

  • Essential
  • Intermediate level experience in dance.
  • Preferred skills
  • Elementary/intermediate level contemporary and/or classical ballet technique
  • Performance and or choreographic/ dance making experience.
  • Experience in release and contact improvisation.
  • Considered skills
  • Parkour
  • Martial Arts
  • Hip Hop
  • Jazz
  • Tap
  • Highland
  • Classical Indian
  • African dance

What is Contemporary Dance Technique?

Your contemporary dance technique class rigorously works your precision and musicality through rhythmic and lyrical exercises. We focus on the articulation of limbs with the contraction, release, curve and spiral of the spine.

You will work on posture and skeletal alignment, the use of your breath with movement, and will practice building dynamic shifting and travelling ability both standing and on the floor.

Technique exercises will work your strength and agility to increase dynamic movement, and improve travelling and jumping facility.

There have been many contemporary dance techniques which have evolved over the last hundred years since the movement began. You will learn contemporary dance history as part of your programme of workshops and build awareness of the vast legacy underpinning the art form.

What is Release?

Release is about finding the balance between holding tension in muscles and learning to release that tension to create an exciting and dynamic movement quality.

You will gain a deeper understanding of how to use the body with the forces of gravity and momentum, facilitating, quick, dynamic and fluid movement sequences.

Students will practice floor work, learning to fall, recover and move safely in, out and across the floor. All students will be encouraged to find ways of adapting movement to suit their own body.