Train and develop your skills for a career you’ll love: You’ll do that here.


Ballet training strongly emphasizes classical technique. Dancers will experience technical styles including Balanchine, Royal Academy of Dance, Vaganova, Cecchetti, and Bournonville. Our goal in offering a wide range of technical styles is to help our dancers develop as artists who can adapt to meet the demands of any choreographer, any company, and any type of movement.

The ballet program offers classes from beginning to advanced levels in ballet technique. Focus on pointe, classical variations, men’s technique, and classical pas de deux are of critical importance to the growth of our students as well.

Performance works include classical and neoclassical ballet repertoire, as well as original choreographic works by various guest artists and faculty. This variety in performance opportunities helps our dancers develop versatility as artists and provides the Cape Girardeau community with access to a wide range of ballet works that will nourish appreciation for the arts.


The modern dance training student’s experience is rooted in a foundation of classic modern dance techniques while incorporating contemporary methodologies and aesthetics. Our faculty have trained in the techniques of Horton, Lewitsky, Limon, and Graham and teach classes that incorporate concepts of these classic techniques. Dancers receive diverse exposure to the past and present styles of modern movement with an emphasis on increasing body awareness, fluidity of movement, shaping of the body, and range of dynamic quality. Classes include improvisation, floor work, spinal articulation, body part initiation, and technical combinations. Dancers are expected to embrace versatility, develop a high level of aesthetic sensibility, and become fluent in a broad range of movement vocabulary.

Classes in modern technique include beginning through advanced levels as well as contemporary partnering and improvisation. Students will have the opportunity to perform choreography in a variety of modern dance styles by faculty and guest artists that includes ensemble work and partnering. Recent performances in modern/contemporary technique include the work of José Limón, Larry Keigwin, and Robert Battle.


As a jazz student, you are exposed to a wide range of styles in preparation for today’s job market. The jazz dance faculty possess backgrounds with diverse jazz influences, including contemporary jazz, Broadway and Commercial styles, and the technique of Gus Giordano. Students will develop rhythmic awareness, dynamic variety, and individual expression while performing adagio and up-tempo combinations. The jazz technique training prepares dancers for a variety of professional pursuits in the performance industry at large.

The jazz dance training includes beginning through advanced levels and encompasses a breadth of styles. Students have the opportunity to perform jazz dance works by faculty choreographers as well as guest artists including Sam Watson, Nan Giordano, and Cesar Salinas.


The training in aerial arts utilizes the curriculum established by Rebekah Leach/Julianna Hane of Born to Fly Productions and is executed on Lyra (hoop), trapeze, sling, silks (fabric), and corde lisse (rope) with specialty apparatuses introduced at the advanced level. Aerial Arts training enables students in the performing arts to infuse their theater and dance training with another physical form that borrows from and expands upon traditional dance and aerial performance. The training enhances body awareness, upper body strength, core engagement, and use of the hamstring and gluteal muscles, and is focused on the transformation of aerial skills into an artistic medium that incorporates movement in the air as well as on the ground.

Aerial work requires athleticism but also allows the student to demonstrate dynamic skills, shapes, and a seamless flow of movement. The development of skills and artistry in aerial arts across multi-apparatuses presents additional career opportunities for students post-graduation as numerous dance and entertainment companies are specifically looking for performers with aerial training. The aerial program offers classes from beginning to advanced levels, and students have the opportunity to perform choreographed aerial works during informal class showings, mainstage dance concerts, and the annual River Campus Summer Arts Festival.


Students in tap are exposed to both Broadway and Rhythm Tap styles in preparation for professional job opportunities. The tap training includes a diverse collection of influences including Commercial, Broadway, and Rhythm styles, as well as training in the Copasetic Cannon. The tap syllabus is combined with jazz and modern techniques focusing on body part isolations, grounded-ness, weight shifts, initiation and follow-through, musicality, and individual style. Students will develop rhythmic awareness, dynamic variety, and individual expression while performing set choreography and improvisational combinations.

The tap dance training includes beginning through advanced levels and encompasses many styles. Students have the opportunity to perform tap dance works by faculty choreographers as well as student choreography projects.

Dance Technique Proficiencies

Dance training is progressive and sequential in ways that should clearly build upon earlier foundations. At Southeast, we require that you prove you are proficient at each level before you can advance to the next.

Office Location
River Campus Seminary, 454
Mailing Address
One University Plaza, MS 7850
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701