Master of Fine Arts

We create new paradigms for interactions between the professional arena and the academic training ground preparing you to lead the field of dance as a visionary, advocate, performer, choreographer and/or teacher.

two dancers in motion away from each other

About the MFA Program


Our world-renowned faculty of dance artists, researchers and scholars offer in-depth mentorship toward your creative and teaching goals.

Historic and Progressive

The MFA was implemented in 1980 and has a long tradition of excellence and leadership in advanced considerations of dance in multiple contexts.


Located within a Research One institution, students can connect with campus artists and scholars, research and technology centers to explore interdisciplinary and collaborative work and curriculum.


The graduate program is intentionally small (12 cohort, with 4 admitted each year), and highly selective, which promotes high standards, personal attention and ample opportunities for every student to choreograph, teach, and perform.

Space and Time to Choreograph

Designed with recycled and environmentally sustainable materials, our Graduate Dance Center is the physical manifestation of our educational philosophy.

World-Class Facilities

Krannert Center for the Performing Arts has four world-class theaters and the Dance Department has seven spacious light-filled studios.

Career Opportunities

Professional networking and career development is supported through course work, workshops and engagement with Dance faculty, alumni and guest artists.

Teaching and Financial Support

Teaching Assistants teach at the university level for three years, a necessary prerequisite for academic teaching positions, and receive one-on-one mentoring in their teaching practices. Teaching Assistantships over 25% time receive a tuition waiver for your graduate studies!

A duet, near the floor

MFA Virtual Open House

Thursday, October 7, 2021
5–7 PM CST

This Zoom session will include:

• An orientation to our department and graduate program
• Meeting our faculty, current graduate students, and alumni
• A guided choreographic experiment with Professor Jennifer Monson
• An opportunity for Q & A

The Zoom link is provided upon registration.


A duet, near the floor
MFA- Dance at Illinois
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