The Juilliard Dance Division, entering its 64th season in 2015-16, is a groundbreaking conservatory dance program whose faculty and alumni have changed the face of dance around the world. The program was established in 1951 by William Schuman during his tenure as president of Juilliard with the guidance of founding director Martha Hill. It became the first major teaching institution to combine equal dance instruction in both contemporary and ballet techniques. Among the early dance faculty members at Juilliard were Alfred Corvino, Martha Graham, Doris Humphrey, José Limón, Anna Sokolow, Antony Tudor, and Hector Zaraspe.
Ballet master and master teacher, Lawrence Rhodes, was appointed the artistic director of the Juilliard Dance Division in July 2002. Going into his 14th year in the fall as director, he has reordered the curriculum and elevated requirements for the diploma and degree programs at Juilliard. He has increased the number of performances and brought in many prominent choreographers to work with the students. Graduates of the program have gone on to perform with virtually every established contemporary and ballet dance company in the United States and abroad, and they also are among the directors and administrators of respected companies worldwide.
Alumni of Juilliard’s Dance Division include Robert Battle, Pina Bausch, Martha Clarke, Mercedes Ellington, Robert Garland, Charlotte Griffin, Kazuko Hirabayashi, Adam Hougland, Saeko Ichinohe, Loni Landon, Jessica Lang, Lar Lubovitch, Bruce Marks, Susan Marshall, Austin McCormick, Andrea Miller, Ohad Naharin, and Paul Taylor.