Best schools of dance

by Elizaveta Chebotareva
(Moscow, Russia)

I need a list of 5-10 best schools of contemporary dance in the world for an article. We are making an education project and need a professional advice.

Comments for Best schools of dance

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Jun 04, 2011
Answer from Maria
by: Maria

Dear Elizaveta,

You know contemporary dance is nowadays a heterogeneous art. You might find companies that have completely different artistic proposals which might be sometimes even contradictory. And the same thing can happen with the schools, as contemporary dance is approached in such different ways.

Therefore, comparing schools as being better or worse might not be so useful, because before that you need to know what type of contemporary dance you are interested in. For example, you might feel more attracted towards an experimental work related to visual arts, a new trend rooted in a modern dance style or a specific method which uses young techniques like flying low or contact improvisation.

There are different approaches and normally each school makes its own emphasis, depending on its conditions: teachers, local trends and so forth.

So, I will propose you a list of renowned places where someone could study contemporary dance, but it is up to each person to decide if the place fits her/his interests or needs.

In our directory, you will find a lot of contemporary dance schools and companies world wide, with links to visit their websites and understand what kind of insight of contemporary dance they have. I suggest considering the companies as much as the schools, because they also teach and studying with professionals is a great way to learn particular aspects of specific artistic works.

Here are the links to those pages in our contemporary dance directory:

Contemporary Dance Schools

Contemporary Dance Companies

So, here's a list of renowned places to learn contemporary dance:

- P.A.R.T.S. (Belgium)

- David Zambrano (Holland)

- The Place (U.K.)

- Folkwang Universität der Künste (Germany)

- The Juilliard School (U.S.A.)

- Conservatori Superior de Dansa (CSD). Institut del Teatre. (Spain)

- Trisha Brown Dance Company (U.S.A.)

- In France, there are the so called 'choreographic centers' (one for each region), where there are always educational programs by all of the most renowned French choreographers.

I hope this is useful as a first guideline. If you wish me to help you with identifying the specific approaches of some important companies, just let me know.

Wishing you the best,


Jun 05, 2012
where in the world rank is Martha Graham school
by: Maija Rutkovska


I would like to know about where in the world rank is Martha Graham school of contemporary dance?

Thank you.

Jun 05, 2012
Reply for Maya
by: Maria

Dear Maya,

As far as I know, there's no such thing as a world rank of contemporary dance schools. Please read my answer above to understand better.

The Martha Graham School is famous and has a great reputation. However, Graham's technique is considered to be a modern style and not a contemporary or postmodern type of dance. But I guess there are contemporary dance classes there anyway.

All the best,


Apr 11, 2014
The Place, London
by: Anonymous


I have successfully passed an audition in The Place and I have been admitted but I am asked to pay a very high tuition fee.

I wonder whether my admission may have been for economic reasons rather than for my talent.

Do such things happen in dance schools?

Thank you vey much for your comments.

Best regards

Apr 11, 2014
Maria's reply
by: Maria

Hi there,

I do not know if The Place applies such politics.

But remember that contemporary dance is a very wide and heterogeneous art form. It's difficult to know why you passed the audition.

Still, if you can afford to pay tuition there, you should be very happy to have that opportunity.

But to answer to your question, I'll have to say 'yes'. That happens in dance schools. In Cuba, for example, almost all foreigners are admitted at the schools, only because they will pay for it. Private academies all around the world also admit every kind of students, only because they pay for the classes.

Yet that fact should not discourage you. That's just a functional issue of our reality and it sometimes opens the doors to hidden talents... like you?

Nov 12, 2014
Country preferable for learning Contemp and jazz
by: Anonymous

Which country is preferable for learning contemp and jazz .??
And a country which is also cheaper!??

Nov 22, 2014
Maria's reply
by: Maria

Hi there!

For learning contemporary dance, you better go to Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany or New York. For Jazz, it’s definitely New York you have to be in.

For a cheaper country in which you’ll find good contemporary dance, you may go to Argentina (in South America), or Brazil, but Brazil is more expensive.


Dec 14, 2014
Dance School in Australia ?
by: James

I wanted to know about dance schools in australia...i heard about Brent street...i am 22 years old and want to apply for some professional full time course..which can help me make a career in dance.

Dec 15, 2014
Maria's reply
by: Maria

Dear James,

All the contemporary dance schools I know in Australia are listed in our directory. Visit the page to see them:

Directory of contemporary Dance Schools


Feb 24, 2015
Schools in Geneva
by: Anonymous

I'm just about to move to Geneva, do you think there is a good contemporary academy there? If not a very good school?

Thank you so much in advance!!

Feb 24, 2015
Maria's reply
by: Maria

Hi there!

Well, I haven’t been there personally, but there’s one contemporary dance school in Geneva listed in our directory. Visit the page to find the link to their website. You’ll see the link to the directory just right here, in the previous comment.


Apr 22, 2015
Iwanson Interational
by: Anonymous


I have been accepted in Iwanson international school of contemporary dance in Munich, Could someone tell me how is the work in this school ? How is the spirit ? Does creativity take a main part in the schedule ?
I did not found anything from former student about this school.
Thanks for your reply !

Apr 30, 2015
Schools NEW
by: Dancer's mum


My teenager will be looking to go into a full time dance school next year. Her strength is Contemporary. Are there any particular schools in Australasia that are standouts in Contemporary Dance? Also, although she has a talent in this genre and offered scholarships, she has been told to not specialize in Contemporary but study all genres to get any future work. What do you think about this statement? As a mother, I feel she should pursue what she loves and excels at - which is Contemporary. Thanks in advance for your answers to these questions.

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