Last week, the University of Wisconsin Dance Department held its first of many Friday forums in the Margaret H’Doubler Performance Space. The forum highlighted five campus dance organizations to show students more about opportunities surrounding the discipline on campus.

The Dance Department Student Organization was the first group to present. All undergraduate students who intend to become dance majors or obtain a certificate in dance are welcome to become members.

Auditions for the dance department occur each year during February. Upon joining the organization, all members receive a mentor or a “big” to guide them through the programs expectations and rigorous training.

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Optima Dance

This is the largest independent student dance organization on campus with over 100 members. The group provides numerous opportunities for performance in student choreographed works as well as showcasing one’s own choreography. Styles they have tackled in the past include ballet, jazz, hip-hop, African dance and more.

Wisconsin Premiere Dance Team

Unlike most other dance organizations on campus, Premiere Jazz is only a semester-long commitment. This allows those who plan to study abroad or graduate early to still pursue their performance interests in dance.

The 16 to 24 person group, not limited to jazz, performs at a variety of events including Homecoming, UW Volleyball games and UW Women’s basketball games. Team practices are held weekly on Sunday and Wednesday evenings.

Auditions begin on Sunday, Sept. 30 from 7-9 p.m. in the SAC fourth floor Multipurpose Room.

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Dance Elite

The original UW dance club on campus — this group practices styles such as jazz, hip hop and lyrical dance. Elite performs in Madison and also travels afar for competitions throughout the year.

Tryouts are ongoing this week at the Natatorium which includes prep classes, auditions and callbacks.

Movement Exchange

This community-based organization’s main goal is to utilize dance, or any movement for that matter, to inspire social change. Outside of the executive board, Movement Exchange is low-commitment, allowing any interested people to attend their meetings and events.

The group is all about inclusivity and community empowerment — they provided an open invitation to the forum for collaboration with any of the other dance organizations on campus.

For a full schedule of forums this semester, visit the UW dance website. All forums are free and open to the public.