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About Our Dance Program

The North Valley Arts Academies (NVAA) Dance Program provides your child with the essential skills to become a well-rounded dancer. In the program, students will learn the methodology for popular dance styles such as:

  • Ballet
  • Jazz
  • Hip-Hop
  • Contemporary

Students are also engaged in the creative process. As you child progresses through the program, they will learn more advanced and complex dance concepts, production, history and analysis of dance, and more. If your child possesses a love of movement, the NVAA Dance Program is ideal for honing their skills and propelling him or her into the art of dance.

Student-Acquired Skills

Students who are enrolled into dance program will acquire skills that will transfer into the student's everyday life. Students will continue to build and enhance many of these skills, enabling them to effectively communicate with others verbally as well as through written forms of communication. The students will begin to take on leadership roles and over seeing and management of projects and much more!

Shadow Mountain Dance Program - Student Receiving Instruction From Instructor Leanne Slater
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Ability to work individually and collaboratively
  • Creative problem-solving skills
  • Performance and presentation skills
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Listening, clarifying, questioning and responding skills

Dance Company

The NVAA Dance Company: is the resident performing company of the NVAA Dance Program. While enrolled in the NVAA Dance Company, students will experience  a pre-professional and comprehensive dance curriculum through advanced concepts in the creative process and movement explorations in the ballet, jazz, urban, and modern/contemporary genres. Through creating, performing, responding, and connecting to dance, students will further develop their collaborative and cooperative skills, dance analysis, critical thinking, and self-expression. Creating opportunities for leadership, the NVAA Dance Company will plan and produce two annual concerts per year, as well as perform in the greater Phoenix community and other state and national events. Guest artists will offer classes and choreography for performances. Students must apply to the NVAA Dance Program and attend a placement audition for entrance into this course.

NVAA Advanced Dance/Senior Exit Portfolio

Advanced Dance /Exit Portfolio is an advanced level dance class that focuses on developing skills in dance through creating, performing, responding, and connecting. Modeled after a college level dance class, students will participate in advanced concepts in performance, technology in dance, and dance literacy and develop skills in analyzing dance through discussions and written assignments. Students will explore a variety of approaches to improvisation and choreography for inspiring the development of original, artistic dance works on stage and on film. Students will complete a 40-hour internship for the course which can take shape in a way that is meaningful and relevant to the student's interests. Students will assess personal artistic skill set and how it translates into other marketable skills outside of dance. The course will help students prepare for the next phase of life, as they consider studying dance in post-secondary education. Course aligns with the Arizona State Arts Proficiency Seal. Students must be a senior, apply to the NVAA Dance Program, and get instructor permission for entrance into this course.

Dance Course Plan

Successful Career Pathways

Students who are passionate about dance have opportunities to choose a career pathways in the area of dance that is the right fit for them.

  • Dancer
  • Choreographer
  • Teacher
  • Dance Writer
  • Physical Therapist
  • Yoga/Pilates/Somatic Teacher
  • Athletic Coach/Personal Trainer
  • Group Fitness Instructor
  • Arts Administration
  • Dance Photographer or Videographer
  • Dancer in a large-scale theme park, Las Vegas production or smaller productions on a cruise line
  • Marketing and public relations for a dance company
  • Artist management and representation
  • Arts facilities operations
  • Special events planner for a ballet company or arts organization

Dance Instructor

Leanne Slater
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  Leanne Slater

Dance Instructor Bio

Leanne (Schmidt) Slater, holds a BFA and MFA in Dance. She presented work professionally with her dance company, Leanne Schmidt and Company, in NYC for 9 years. Ms. Slater has received commissions from various dance companies and universities and has served on the dance faculty at Grand Canyon University, GCC, PVCC, ASU, and Camelback High School. She has been published in Dance Teacher Magazine and has presented at the National Dance Education Organization Conferences. She is currently creating professionally in Phoenix and is the Dance Program Specialist for NVAA Dance at Shadow Mountain High School.