The Aerial Dance Emphasis is offered for those students who have a serious interest in aerial dance and its application to dance training, performance, and choreography.

General Information

Frequent Flyers® Aerial Dance and the CU dance division work as partners to provide a customized course of study as a secondary emphasis in aerial dance simultaneously with our MFA degree. All MFA students are expected to select an area of secondary emphasis by the end of their first year. The following are pre-requisites and a description of the type of individual who be a good fit the for the aerial emphasis.

  • An undergraduate dance degree or the equivalent
  • A diversified dance background: experience in a variety of dance forms at the advanced or intermediate/advanced level - this may include individuals who have had a lot of embodied movement research who are talented and curious movers and creators
  • Choreographic and performance experience in contemporary dance forms and aerial movement forms
  • Expertise in global aerial approaches including North American, European, Asian, and other international aerial forms that incorporate somatic practice, dance, and theatrical work
  • Interest in engaging in the specific opportunities offered at Frequent Flyers® such as the Frequent Flyers® Professional Training Program or in creating an individualized collaborative arrangement with Frequent Flyers® and CU that meets the needs of the student/artist
  • Experience and or interest in scholarly research and writing regarding the field of aerial arts such as fusion of aerial, theatre and circus arts; aesthetics of various aerial arts; and other fields/disciplines and aerial movement
  • Teaching experience in ground forms such as modern, ballet, jazz, transnational, hip hop, contact improvisation, and aerial
  • Interest in advancing aerial pedagogy, performance, choreography and curricular development, and advancing the form through creating/learning new aerial apparatus in collaboration with Frequent Flyers®
  • Interest in advancing the field of aerial arts
  • Rigging training/experience - without prior training, students will be required to take the rigging course at Frequent Flyers®


  • The graduate dance core curriculum is required
  • Students who are working in the Aerial Dance Emphasis concurrently with the MFA degree program will be required to complete 50 credit hours towards their degree instead of 60. The 10 credit reduction typically comes from electives and from technique credits
  • Remaining credits may be taken in dance, kinesiology, psychology, or in other areas which best support the student's goals
  • In order to successfully complete the MFA requirements and the certification or intensive study requirements, careful scheduling is critical during advising sessions
  • All fees, schedules and regulations pertaining to the Frequent Flyers® Studio and private lessons are completely independent of the dance division and CU Boulder
  • The topic of the MFA Project does not necessarily have to relate to the student’s Aerial Dance Emphasis
  • All requirements for the Aerial Emphasis must be completed no later than two weeks prior to graduation

Application Information

  • Before a student is eligible to begin work in the Aerial Dance Emphasis, they must be officially accepted to the MFA in Dance program
  • Applicants must also be accepted by Frequent Flyers® (located off-campus in Boulder) 
  • Applicants should follow the online MFA in Dance Application instructions 
  • Submit videos of solo and group aerial work in the Digital Portfolio section of the application

MFA students interested in the Aerial Dance Emphasis should be prepared to express what aspect of aerial arts they would like to pursue. Each student's proposal will be considered on an individual basis, and Frequent Flyers® will advise the student based on the individual's level of experience and goals.

Potential areas of emphasis include scholarly research and writing regarding the field of aerial arts such as fusion of aerial, performance, choreography, directing, theatre and circus arts, aesthetics of various aerial arts, and other fields/disciplines and aerial movement. 

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