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Dance Education Student Experience

Kaleidoscope Dancers

Mission Statement

Kaleidoscope Dancers is our resident performing company that provides community based programming to local New York City school children. The company is dedicated to creating connections between professional dancers and children. Through performances and movement workshops facilitated by company members, students will participate in an interactive workshop that introduces elements of dance and dance-making in a fun, collaborative environment.

Artistic Director: Deborah Damast 
Music Director: Brad Wentworth 

Kaleidoscope Dance Company is composed of master's students in the Dance Education Graduate Program at NYU Steinhardt and facilitated by Artistic Director, Assistant Director, and Musical Director.

With Kaleidoscope Dancers, students will observe and discuss professional choreography as well as explore movement of their own. The workshop will focus on group dance making with children and company members working cooperatively, and working with our music director to create original musical scores for their dances.

As a result of this workshop, students will:

  • Experience new dance styles, genres, and choreographic tools
  • Solve Complex problems
  • Express feelings through movement
  • Learn how to appreciate different forms and genres of dance
  • Explore the connection between dance and music
  • Develop inter- and intrapersonal skills
  • Develop awareness and respect for others


  • Students arrive at NYU and are then escorted to the dance studio where Kaleidoscope Dancers present a dance performance
  • Students respond to, and analyze the dances that they observed
  • Company teachers lead the students in a developmentally appropriate warm up and skill development
  • Company teachers present the theme of the day through visual and auditory modes and prompt the students for prior knowledge in the topic as baseline assessment of the theme. (Theme is decided on prior to the workshop by Cooperating Teachers and KD Company teachers.)
  • Students are grouped into small choreographic groups with Company members in each group and are given instructions and tools on a choreographic task
  • Each group creates a dance based on the theme and instructions collaboratively
  • When each group is finished, they meet with the musical director to discuss their music requests
  • Each group performs their dance accompanied by the original musical score
  • Students and company members in the audience discuss the elements that they observed for each dance
  • Each workshop finishes with a sharing circle and students are encouraged to discuss their experience in the workshop

Additional Programs

Each semester the Dance Education program produces a free Friday matinee concert for local schools in connection with our Masters and Faculty Concerts at the Frederick Loewe Theatre. These are interactive and the pieces are performed in a lecture demonstration format, introducing students to the choreographers ideas, themes, and aspects of the theatre such as lighting, staff, and production.

When and Where

All Kaleidoscope workshops are free of charge and take place on Fridays between February and May.
Time: 10:30am- 12:00pm (please arrive at 10:20)
NYU Steinhardt Education Building: 35 West 4th Street 3rd floor studios 305 and 304 (between Greene Street and Washington Square East)

Also note security procedures at the University require us to provide a list of names of all non-NYU people who will be entering the building for an event. We will need a list of all students and adults from your school who are attending the workshop.

Photo release forms will be required from all children attending, to be signed by parents in advance. Photos and videos are used for archiving purposes and internal advertising only.

Please email professor Deborah Damast with any questions regarding Kaleidoscope Dancers.