Olivia ’12 RSS feed

About Me:

My name is Olivia and I am a senior at Butler University. I spend most of my time in Lilly Hall as a BFA Dance Performance major. When not in rehearsal or ballet class, I write papers for my English Literature second major. In my super-abundant, never-lacking, this-is-highly-sarcastic spare time, I attempt to cook in my apartment kitchen, watch Youtube videos of ballet, knit sweaters that never seem to come to an end, and read books both silly and serious. If I could take any class at Butler just for kicks, I'd go for DiffyQ.

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Posts Tagged “double major”

Q&A: Dance Department

Last week I got a series of great questions from a high school senior looking into Butler’s dance major. I thought I would answer them here on the blog so other prospective students can see and comment!

Q: Is Butler’s dance program based in classical ballet? Most programs seem to be modern emphasis.

A: Yes, the dance department is grounded in classical ballet. I was struck by the scarcity of options for a serious classical ballet, liberal arts program when I was looking for schools four years ago. I take a ballet technique class five days a week, plus pointe, classical variations, and classical partnering.

Snow Corps, The Nutcracker, 2010, choreography by Cynthia Pratt

Q: What other techniques are you learning at Butler?

A: The semester counts here are out of seven, since I am taking my seventh of eight semesters. I have studied jazz (4 semesters), modern (7), contemporary partnering (1), Slavic character (1), Spanish character (1), and improvisation (1).

In less technical-movement-based classes, I’ve studied: Laban Movement Analysis, Teaching Analysis of Classical Ballet (of Jazz and of Modern are also offered), Body Placement (a sort of Pilates-nutrition-anatomy mishmash), and Choreography.

On the purely academic front, the Dance Department offers/requires: Masterworks of Dance, a history of music class, Music Theory for Dance, Design and Construction of Dance Costumes, Dance History, and Theory and Philosophy of Dance. Other related requirements include an acting class, piano, and voice.

Midwinter Dance Festival 2010, 1st of 3 in 17, choreography by Cynthia Pratt

Q: Anything you think would be helpful…

A: This senior mentioned double majoring, which I am doing with great difficulty. If you want to double major, my advice is to be realistic and to become intimate with the requirements of both departments and with the colleges of each department. The trouble I’ve run into personally is the language requirement demanded by the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (for my English Literature major) — though it’s not required by the Jordan College of Fine Arts (the college of my primary major in Dance Performance). Look carefully at all your requirements and do the credit-hour math beforehand. You might, as this senior wisely mentioned, have to stay an extra summer or semester to finish.

Q: I live in Georgia, so scheduling a visit is tough. Can you give me some pointers?

A: Here are some questions you might want to consider before flying/driving to Indianapolis if you are from out of state or looking at the dance major:

– Do you want a liberal arts environment (versus a conservatory)?
– Do you want a program based in classical ballet?
– Are you open to learning all sorts of other techniques?
– Does Butler offer the classes you want, both in and outside the dance major? (Which you can check here…)
– Could you live in Indianapolis? Could you fly/drive a substantial distance for the holidays?

As I told this senior, if you have any other questions you want answered about Butler University, don’t hesitate to ask! If I don’t know the answer, I can find someone who does and get that information to you as you begin your college decision process. You might also like to peruse the departmental requirements or the Jordan College of Fine Arts Facebook page.

The GREs: Another Summer Story

Once upon a time, a girl named Olivia decided to study for two majors. She left her family’s hut on the edge of the woods and ventured deep into the forest. When the weather changed and it was time for most young lads and lasses to return to their families’ dwellings (they take advantage of the summer light to chop wood for their families’ winter stock of fuel), Olivia found a group of youths who decided to stay in the woods. This was called BSI.

Then once that bunch of young people trickled back toward the perimeter of leaf cover, Olivia wandered through the forest alone once more, part of the diffuse group comprised of those doing independent studies. While sustaining membership in this rather scattered crowd, she passed several hours in the company of an assembly of yet more lads and lasses. This was known as the GRE, the Graduate Requisite Exam.

This assembly, however, stuck out in a bold new direction. No longer did they circle the campfire in search of antonyms; no longer did the ceremony adapt question by question. Instead, they worked on a full body of arcane trivia before the spirit of the proceedings determined in what vein the questioning should advance. This was known as a computer adapted test which adjusted difficulty section by section rather than question by question.

In sort, Olivia survived the long ritual but remains at large in the forest, still weaving daisy chains (i.e. English papers) for her independent study, slowly going loopy, while the majority of Butler lasses and lads prepare to return to the forest of academia.

Summer classes at Butler

The Butler campus is certainly busier during the Summer II session than during Summer I. I’m not sure why, but it looks like more happens. Summer I felt like life in a ghost town. The weather was nicer though, since it’s becoming hotter day by day — though still nothing like the humid Richmond weather!

The sky over the Butler Bowl during a beautiful summer day.

Summer I and Summer II are the names of Butler’s summer sessions. I’m here for part of Summer I and part of Summer II, since BSI runs on its own schedule. However, each summer session is six weeks long and offers different classes.

Fun fact: Classes during the summer don’t necessarily run for the full six weeks. I did not realize this at first. Classes that run only three of the six weeks might meet for several hours four or five days a week, while those that run the full summer session could meet only twice or three times a week. Does that sound like an easy schedule? Imagine doing a semester’s worth of reading and papers in four weeks. Yikes!

Summer classes are a great way to fulfill extra requirements if you have a busy schedule or are switching majors. Just look at the price tag first, because with housing and tuition, summer classes can add up!

Scheduling, part VI

I recently registered for my sixth semester of classes. That’s right. The sixth. I will be a senior before I know it, and that is terrifying.

Registration for spring classes... just when the leaves fall and it gets really cold.

Registration, when you are enrolled as student, goes by credit hour, so I got to enroll at 3:30 pm on the first day of registration. When I was a freshman, I had to register quite late, since enrollment periods open for about two weeks. I’m only a junior, but I had some credit from AP tests I took in high school, and since I’m in the Butler honors college, I get twenty extra “ghost” credit hours added to my registration queuing total as a sort of perk. Anyway. The point being that I am all set for spring semester… which will also be terrifying, since I’m taking three English classes.

I thought for a long time that finishing an English major (the literature track) would be impossible, but I have since met with the head of Butler’s English Department, and I have new hope. I am way behind, however, and this spring is going to be rough. I’m taking twenty-one credit hours (which means I’ll have to pay for the extra credit hour I’m taking, since the limit for students with primary majors in the JCFA is 20 credit hours a semester). Nine of those hours are English classes. One of those English classes will go on my transcript as an internship, since I’m acting as a sort of TA for the department head’s EN 185 class.

(EN 185 is Intro to the Discipline of English. It’s the first class you take towards an English major. I’ll be responsible for all the work the other students do, plus reading literary criticism on the works, offering help with essay writing and revision, writing longer/more in-depth papers, and presenting several research projects to the class.)

I am going to be so busy. Wish me luck!

The classes I’m taking in the spring:

  • Ballet technique
  • Modern technique
  • Pointe technique
  • Pas de deux
  • Variations
  • Butler Ballet (rehearsal period)
  • Dance history 2
  • Choreography 2
  • Literature of the American Renaissance
  • Romanticism
  • Intro to the Discipline of English

(gulp)