BA (Hons) Professional Dance Performance

BA (Hons) Professional Dance Performance

  • Duration 3 years
  • Start date September 2024
  • Apply by March 2024
  • Funding Available


This 18+ programme provides a broad base of professional training in ballet, contemporary dance, jazz dance and musical theatre, with in-depth development of specialist skills, educating quality performers who graduate into all areas of the performing arts.

The programme’s full title (depending on the pathway studied) is:

  • BA (Hons) Professional Dance Performance (Ballet)
  • BA (Hons) Professional Dance Performance (Contemporary Dance)
  • BA (Hons) Professional Dance Performance (Jazz & Commercial Dance)
  • BA (Hons) Professional Dance Performance (Musical Theatre)

Performance opportunities are built into the curriculum throughout all three years, ranging from informal, in-house presentations of work to full evening performances at major London venues and elsewhere across the UK.

Technical training and performance are combined with creative practice and choreography, as well as intellectually-challenging theory and research. Students are enabled to think critically about dance, enhancing their understanding of the industry and their development as performers and practitioners. Studies include anatomy, and the ever-changing history and culture of dance – from ballet to Beyoncé.

LSC’s programme enables students to take increased ownership of their own training path, whilst producing dance artists who have the versatility to work in a wide range of fields. Graduates may be found performing in international dance companies, West End and Broadway shows, on film and television; also, they achieve successful and sustainable careers in choreography, directing, arts management and education.

This programme is quality assured by Middlesex University and you will receive a Middlesex award on successful completion.


Please click here to see the Middlesex University Regulations.

Subject to revalidation

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Applications for the 2024/25 Academic Year are now open.

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Throughout the three-year programme, students have the opportunity to specialise in one of classical ballet, contemporary dance, jazz dance or musical theatre. At application students are asked to indicate their preference of pathway, the audition panel will work with the student to identify the best pathway for them. Once on their preferred pathway, students will focus on their specialism in their performance practice modules throughout their first and second years, increasing the hours of focus on this area as they progress through the programme. In the third year of the programme, student will perform within one of LSC’s four acclaimed touring companies. (NB: This is circumstance to Government guidelines regarding Coronavirus)

This year provides the intensive training and performance experience that is required by advanced classical ballet students who wish to pursue a professional career. The current programme builds on the original course which was developed by Margaret Barbieri in consultation with Dame Alicia Markova. It aims to prepare students to meet the demands of performing in a range of work on the ballet stage today, fostering a critical awareness of the choreographic movements in classical ballet, deep understanding of the form and nurturing each dancer in their unique gifts/talents as an artist.

The work in Images Ballet Company emerges from current approaches to classical ballet, while valuing its heritage. In addition to daily ballet classes, specialist courses in repertoire, virtuosity, pas de deux and pointe work are included in the curriculum. These are complemented by other disciplines considered essential for a career as a professional ballet dancer, including contemporary dance and a programme of Individual Physical Development sessions which provide students with physical grounding in strength and conditioning in support of growing their individual artistic practice. Master classes and weekly workshops with leading figures in dance are organised to enable further creative exploration, artistic development and professional networking. Career management and audition techniques are also studied during this final year of training, ensuring that the students receive a comprehensive education that prepares them for professional career.

Contemporary Dance

The contemporary dance professional year and time in our contemporary performing company INTOTO Dance concentrates on creative, individual interpretation in performance and the enhancement of students’ technique and command of the stage. It aims to foster an intelligent dance artist – one who has the technical skills, creative artistry and physical and emotional maturity to work successfully in a professional environment.

In addition to a daily ballet class uniquely created for the contemporary dancer, third year students on the contemporary dance professional option study Graham and Cunningham-based technique, contact improvisation, release technique and choreography, as well as taking classes that encompass current commercial dance styles. Students can also take advantage of voice technique training and singing for dancers.

Alongside technical training, research and development, workshops and masterclasses with artistic directors and leading practitioners across the field of contemporary dance, dance theatre, and other diverse dance styles are a regular part of the course. These sessions provide students with an opportunity to explore and develop their creative practice whilst providing an opportunity for engagement with the professional field as they move towards graduation and begin careers as independent creative artists.

Recent workshops and visiting practitioners include Alleyne Dance, Luke Brown Company, Liam Francis and Laura Weston. Professional development opportunities for third year students also aim to foster entrepreneurial and networking skills, invaluable for a portfolio career path after graduation.

Jazz & Commercial Dance

In this final year, a challenging and exciting opportunity is provided for the serious jazz dancer to train, rehearse, perform and tour as part of our dedicated performing company Jazz Co. This environment develops the resilience, physical skills and stamina required by today’s emerging professional performer, as students are exposed to the latest trends and ever-increasing technical demands of today’s workplace. Care is taken to ensure training is balanced and provided to the highest standards and that the particular gifts and interests of each student are valued and nurtured in the context of professional standards and goals. The year’s syllabus builds towards a final term largely committed to performances in public.

Emphasis is placed on the concept of isolation technique as a feature common to all the different and personal characteristics of jazz dance. The vocabulary of the different jazz styles – ballet, tap, contemporary dance, singing and drama – are combined to create the comprehensive yet balanced training required to equip students for a successful career in commercial dance. Essential skills such as focus, projection, interpretation and style, linked to the ability to absorb and memorise choreography are also developed.

Training also includes work on the styles and personalities of past jazz dance icons and is further enhanced by regular workshops and masterclasses given by leading choreographers and dancers from companies, television and West End productions. This, coupled with visits to performances, provides students with valuable experience and the vital opportunity of working with potential employers.

Encouraging and emphasising the individuality of a dancer is a vital element of the graduate year. Throughout your time at LSC, we will guide you through the keys to success within the industry that stretch beyond the stage. Namely, we’ll advise you on careers, agents, Equity, CVs, photographs, portfolios of audition material and identification of possible job opportunities.

Musical Theatre

This professional option embraces all of the theatrical disciplines that contribute to the production of musical theatre. It is designed specifically for students aiming at a professional career in this aspect of theatre, which demands a high level of practical expertise in a wide variety of skills; these skills will be put into practice during your time in Seedtime Musical Theatre Company, our acclaimed third-year company.

The curriculum is comprised of intensive courses in singing technique and performance, acting, acting through song. improvisation, voice, speech and musical theatre repertoire. These are supplemented by the dance techniques that are required by musical theatre students, such as ballet, jazz and tap. Students have contact, throughout their time at London Studio Centre, with potential employers through studio-based workshops and masterclasses.

Specialist singing courses build on the students’ knowledge of the musical repertoire for popular theatre, and cover genres and styles from the early 20th century through to contemporary work. The classwork ensures that the students develop their own natural skills, and have the technical foundations to sustain a professional career. Regular private singing coaching means that students are fully prepared for public performances and auditions.

Drama studies naturalise acting technique, so that it becomes undetectable in performance. The course aims to promote the technical skills, intellectual grasp and the physical and artistic maturity that are required to work successfully in the professional theatre. Voice and speech coaching also continue to play an important part in the final year, reinforcing the work covered in the first two years.  This ensures that each student has a flexible, well-modulated voice and is able to tackle a wide variety of roles and possesses the strength and skill to project in large auditoria.

These different disciplines are united in the musical theatre repertoire classes, which allow students to bring together their triple threat skills and discover how to perform for musical theatre.  Ensemble singing, music theory and stamina through dance are combined to ensure that graduates are fully prepared for the demands of musical theatre performance. This work promotes an awareness of both the content and style of these different forms of musical theatre.

Ballet continues to provide a basis for sound dance technique, emphasising the secure performance of the basic vocabulary. Jazz technique adds interest, style and flair to the performance and staging of songs and dances from musical theatre, with its emphasis on co-ordination, fluency and presentational skills, while Tap dance is an essential skill for students seeking employment in the musical theatre world.

Entry requirements

Applicants will be expected to audition for entry onto the programme in one of the following pathways: Classical Ballet, Contemporary Dance, Jazz Dance or Musical Theatre

Applicants are normally expected to have:

  • Previous dance experience and an ability to showcase their skills within an audition
  • A minimum of two A-level passes*, plus three different GCSE passes of grade 4 or higher (Grade C if awarded prior to 2017) including GCSE English Language (or equivalent qualifications), and an accumulated minimum of 96 UCAS points
  • A-level Dance (desirable)
  • The level of health and fitness necessary to study intensively

Applicants who have non-standard qualifications (or who wish work or life experience to be taken into account as part of their application) will be considered on an individual basis, in line with the general aims and principles of Middlesex University’s Admissions Policy and within the terms of the Accreditation of Prior Learning policy (APEL).

If your first language is not English, you will need an IELTS score of 6.0 or equivalent, with no less than 5.5 in each individual component, or an equivalent qualification.

Student visas are available for international applicants.

We are unable to accept applications for deferred entry or defer offers for this course as applicants must retain a high level of fitness prior to enrolment.

*A-Level Equivalents: Normally, BTEC/UAL/RSL Level 3 qualifications, Access to HE Diploma, International Baccalaureate, Scottish Highers and Advanced Scottish Highers, Irish Leaving Certificate, Norwegian Vitnemål, German Abitur, Apolytirion. UCAS points from Graded Dance, Speech and Drama Exams will not normally form part of a formal offer.

Annual Fees

Tuition fees per annum (Academic Year 2024/25): £16,317.00

For more information on course fees, please click here.

Students should be aware that tuition fees are subject to an annual inflationary increase.

Additional Costs

In addition to the Tuition Fees advertised above; students may incur additional costs such as dance equipment (including clothing), travel and maintenance.

Optional additional costs include health insurance/cash plan, Spotlight/Equity membership, LSC merchandise, discounted offers, open classes, production recordings, IPD equipment, LSC performances (discounted), printing costs, stationery costs, TOTUM membership (formerly NUS), TFL discount card, reading list (all available in LSC’s library), sheet music, physiotherapy, massage, Library fines, theatre trips, headshots and graduation costs.