A Career as a Dancer

Focusing on movement and self-expression

Dancers utilize a variety of dance forms, including classical ballet and modern dance styles that allow free movement and self-expression. Many dancers combine stage work with teaching or choreography.

Dancers perform in a variety of settings such as musical productions; in folk, ethnic, tap, jazz; and other popular kinds of dancing. They also perform in opera, musical comedy, television, movies, music videos, and commercials in which they may sing and act as well. Dancers most often perform as part of a group, although a few top artists perform solo.

Whether you study dance at a college, university, or conservatory, be prepared for an intense experience. At many institutions, students can chose between a Bachelor of Arts in dance and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance; these degrees and their requirements may vary depending where you decide to study.

Colleges and universities will provide you with opportunities to perform and gain experience outside of the classroom. Many schools offer dance ensembles or troupes that give you the opportunity to perform in front of a variety of audiences and with dancers—including other students, faculty, and alumni—who have varied skill levels.

Obtaining a degree in dance provides you with a variety of options for future careers. Many graduates work as professional dancers, teachers, choreographers, dance therapists, arts administrators, dance notators, and more. Focusing on technique, choreography, dance history, and pedagogy, a degree in dance can prepare to pursue a career as a performer, a choreographer, or a teacher. 

On the other hand, dancers and choreographers face intense competition for jobs. The number of applicants continues to grow, and only the most talented dancers will find regular employment. Dancers perform in productions such as professional dance companies, musical productions, television, movies, videos, commercials, and more.


This article was written by Hannah Purnell

Hannah Purnell is a staff writer for CollegeView.com. Hannah writes extensively on the topic of undergraduate studies and the college search process.


  1. Breannah Simon

    hi, my name is Breannah Simon, I was wondering what type of tecniques i would need to become the best professional dancer ?

  2. Ashley strother

    what can i do to become a professional dancer? are there free programs for me becoming a dancer with no cost at all?

  3. maryah

    i feel u cuz life as a dancer is better than mines i wish i can do that to.

  4. Elizabeth Cabrera

    Im a junior in high school right now and dance is my passion.. I want to become a professional dancer, but i don’t know what to do after i graduate high school.. I need help :o

  5. keria

    i always loved to dance (ance girl)

  6. deb

    My daughter is in dance she wants to pursue a career in dance should I send her to joffery ny or somewhere comparable if she makes the audition the expense is an issue. Are there other dance schools that maybe more affordable that will give her good opportunity?

  7. lisa welsh

    I have loved dance since I was 6, when I began taking lessons. My passion grew for dance as I got older. I wanted to attend college for some type of dance and open up my open studio. I wanted to teach children who had disabilities, artificial limbs and children with cancer. I think I would have been a great impact on them. Just making them feel special even if it was for one one nigh at there dance recital. To make them feel special would be the greatest job in the world.

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