Outreach | Webster University


shannon and keronThe Department of Dance at Webster University offers lecture demonstrations and movement workshops to St. Louis-area schools throughout the academic year. All lecture demonstrations and movement workshops performed by the Dance Lecture Demonstration Touring Group of Webster University are entirely free. We understand the rising cost of education and the negative impact of budget cuts, particularly on the arts. We desire the arts, and particularly dance, to be a part of every person's life.

Webster Dance Residency

fox performing arts charitable foundationThe Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation has generously supported our Dance Demo program, an arts education and outreach program that has been serving area high schools for the last four years. Since 2009 the Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation has been supporting the Dance Demo program with annual grants.

In November 2011, the foundation awarded Webster University's Dance Demo with its first Multiple Year grant, providing $3,000 per year for 2012, 2013, and 2014 activities.

During the spring of 2012, University City High School students and four Webster University Dance Demo fellows focused on improvisation and hip-hop. University City shared their knowledge of hip-hop and Webster University focused on the use of improvisational tools for choreography. The students worked cooperatively and collaboratively, creating a movement score during the many workshops held at University City High School. During the Spring of 2013, Kirkwood High School students and eight Webster University Dance Demo fellows focused on improvisation as a tool for creating a dance. Both experiences were engaging and culminated successfully in a dynamic performance at both schools.

Lecture Demonstrations

Lecture demonstrations consist of an informal program of approximately 45 minutes. Several styles of dance are performed and discussed, including early dance, ballet, pointe, modern, tap, and jazz, with the intent of exposing the audience to a variety of dance forms while also clarifying dance as an art form. Dancers then present a variety of improvisational exercises in order to demonstrate components of dance such as shape, rhythm, floor pattern, and energy quality. Student choreography may then be presented. In addition, sometimes the audience is invited to take part in movement activities.

Movement Workshops

Movement workshops are also approximately 45 minutes in length. Workshops can be tailored to the participants' skill level, from those who have no previous dance experience to those who participate in dance classes at their school. A variety of dance forms can be taught, depending on the request of the school.

All programs can be performed for either an entire school or a select group of students, although movement workshops are intended for a maximum class of 40 students.

A Day in the Life of a Dancer

Webster University invites your High School Seniors to join our students. If there were a day that your high school would allow seniors to visit Webster University, those students would shadow a Webster Dance major for the day, taking part in all the classes he/she attends.  Let us know if this program would be of interest to you! dance@webster.edu


No dance experience is required to participate in movement workshops, but students will need to wear appropriate clothing – no dress shoes or hard-soled shoes, and no garments that will inhibit movement.

A clean, wooden floor in a gymnasium or auditorium is needed, as well as a place for dancers to change clothes. Access to a sound system, microphone and an extension cord would be helpful.

Scheduling is not difficult. However, the number of schools Webster can visit in a semester is limited, so scheduling is arranged on a first-come, first-served basis. Host schools are always welcome to invite nearby schools to attend.

If you are interested in a visit by the Webster University Dance Lecture Demonstration Touring Group or participating in “A Day in the Life of a Dancer,” please fill out and return the Lecture Demonstration information sheet.  It is our hope that the touring schedule can be set as soon as possible.  We look forward to hearing from you in the near future.  If you have any questions concerning our program, please don't hesitate to call.  A message may be left at 314/246-7744; or you may use our email: dance@webster.edu.  Hope to see you this year!