Paul Anthony Dennis

BFA Juilliard School, MFA Purchase College, SUNY


A former member of José Limón Dance Company, Paul is Associate Director of the White Mountains Summer Dance Festival and Assistant Professor at UMass Amherst. His career also includes performances with Works/Laura Glenn Dance, Jacob’s Pillow Men’s Dancers: The Ted Shawn Legacy, Janis Brenner and Dancers, Scapegoat Garden, and a 1995 White House performance.

Paul’s current research blends his studies in Laban Movement Analysis and dance with research in neuroscience to investigate and design movement protocols that aims to support Huntington’s disease patients.  His creative activities include an internationally touring solo concert featuring repertory by Reggie Wilson, José Limón, Daniel Nagrin, and others, as well as newly commissioned works by Sidra Bell and Deborah Goffe. 

As a Five College faculty member, Paul has taught at Mount Holyoke College, Amherst College, and Hampshire College. He has also been guest artist/faculty in residence for Certamen International de Choreografia in Burgos, Spain; Scuola di Ballo Accademia Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Italy; International Dance Association in Ravenna, CivitanovaDanza; Molinari Arts Center, and; The Rome Opera Ballet. 

Curriculum Vitae

Paul Anthony Dennis
141 N. Pleasant Street #348
Amherst, MA 01004-0348

M.F.A. in Teaching and Performance, including a certificate in Arts Administration

Purchase College Conservatory of Dance, SUNY (2007) 

B.F.A. Dance

The Juilliard School, New York, NY (1991)


Additional studies 

2013 CMA coursework, Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies, LIMS®

1997 Art Administration MA coursework, Teachers’ College, Columbia University, NYC. 

2013 Certified Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Associate (CHPA)

The HIPAA Privacy regulations require health care providers and organizations, as well as their business associates, develop and follow procedures that ensure the confidentiality and security of protected health information (PHI) when it is transferred, received, handled, or shared.  This applies to all forms of PHI, including paper, oral, and electronic, etc.

2007 – Present

Assistant Professor and Co-director of Dance, UMass Amherst

Including instruction in all modern technique levels (DAN 114, 216, 317), beginning and intermediate dance composition (DAN 151 & 252), University dancers performance, production and tour (DAN 308, 491A), New York Professional Outreach Program (DAN 494D-01) Senior Seminar (DAN 495A-1), Methods and Materials of Teaching Dance (DAN 362-01), Advanced Dance in Repertory (DAN 309-01) and Dance in the 20th C. (DAN 171-01)

2006 – 2007 Guest Artist, Mount Holyoke College, Amherst College

2013 Guest Artist, Hampshire College

Additional college and university responsibilities include: Choreography; artistic direction and production management for student concerts, choreography for musicals and non musical theater; supervision of Teaching Assistants and mentoring senior theses; producing and coordinating annual department concerts; academic advising, graduation tracking and advising; coordinating and directing community outreach events; grant-writing; budget preparation for concerts and tours. Departmental representative and coordinator to American College Dance Association (ACDA)

Of special note: Creation and implementation of the New York Professional Outreach Program, NYPOP. (DANCE 494D – 01 S-NY Professional Outreach Program). Since 2007 this 3-credit seminar has guided dance majors through the realities of post-graduation life as they prepare for their careers

2007-Present Artistic Director of University Dancers Ensemble,

UMass Amherst

Associate Director, White Mountain Summer Dance Festival, Sarah Lawrence College

Summer 2015 Master teacher: Limon Dance Company, NYC

Summer 2015 Faculty: NYU-Steinhardt/Limon Summer teachers’ workshop

2010 to Present Principal Advisor: UMass Bachelor’s Degree with Individual Concentration (BDIC)

2008 to Present Master teacher: American College Dance Association (ACDA) Summer 2011-13 Master teacher: Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, community class

Summer 2011-12 Master teacher: Massachusetts Dance Festival, Boston University, and UMass Amherst

Fall 2006 Master teacher: Modern dance technique and Limón Repertory, Central Connecticut State University and Trinity College

Additional Master classes:

International: Italy, Spain, France, Hungary, Brazil, El Salvador, US Virgin Islands, and Trinidad & Tobago

United States: Over 25 States

Regional: New York City, Boston, Connecticut, Maine, Albany and

New Hampshire


2016 “(Un)charted” in collaboration with sculptor Valerie Gilman

2015 “Play With Your Food” New Century Theater fundraiser, directed by Harley Erdman

“WTF” (With The Flow) music by Vivaldi, 8 dancers, White Mountain Summer Dance Festival

2014 “The Way…out” music by Bach, 8 dancers, White Mountain Summer Dance Festival

2013 “Hotel Destiné” music by Toby Twining, 12 dancers, White Mountain Summer Dance Festival

2010 “Pienso en Ti” music by Shakira and Antonio Pinto, solo, Mount Holyoke College senior dance concert.

2009 “Kinetic Counterpoint” music by Steve Reich, 8 dancers, UMass MultiBands, Fine Arts Center

2008 “Allegro Molto” music by Antonio Vivaldi, 6 dancers, Massachusetts Academy of Ballet

2007 “Who Moved my Finish Line?” music by John Adams, 6 dancers, Dance Connect & Five College Faculty Dance Concert

2006 “Meagan’s Way” music by Pat Metheny, 6 dancers, Trinity College


2012 “Violet” UMass Theatre Production (Rand Theater)

2011 “Urinetown” UMass Theatre Production (Rand Theater)

2010 “25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” UMass Theatre Production (Rand Theater)

2008 “Ondine” UMass Theatre Production (Rand Theater

Reconstructions and Directing:

2015 Limón Dance Company “The Traitor” – José Limón Dance Company

2014 Accademia Theatro alla Scala “The Unsung” – José Limón

2008 to Present: University Dancers, Artistic and rehearsal Director:

  • “Ellington Nutcracker” in collaboration with 10 alumni choreographers.
  • “Manhattan Research” choreographed by John Heginbotham
  • “at the bazaar” choreographed by Sidra Bell
  • “Min-Even” choreographed by Merce Cunningham
  • “The Dance Claimed Me” three solos choreographed by Pearl Primus
  • “Passacaglia & Fugue” choreography by Doris Humphrey
  • “There is a Time” Choreography by José Limón
  • “A Choreographic Offering” Choreography by José Limón

2012 Rome Opera Ballet “Day on Earth” – Doris Humphrey

Continuing Ted Hershey Dance And Music Marathon:

  • “Schrödinger’s Cat,”
  • “At Risk,”
  • “Kerb”
  • “Between Us Glimmering” by Laura Glenn
  • “Windows”, “Meditation by Ted Hershey
  • “Duo Hermanos” by Rob Kowalski

2008 to 2009 Mentor/Choreographer: The Performance Project –

Examines the effects of racism, economic oppression, bigotry, and violence, and creates compelling works of theater, movement, and spoken-word.

Solo Repertory:

Dr. Pearl Primus, “Negro Speaks of Rivers,” “Strange Fruit,” “Hard Times Blues”

José Limón, “Chaconne,” “The Mazurkas.”

Ted Hershey, “Between us Glimmering”, “Meditation”, Duos Hermanos”

Doris Humphrey’s: “Day on Earth”, “Passacaglia”

Deborah Goffe “BESPOKE(n)

Sidra Bell, Untitled

Reggie Wilson “Seeline O’Man”

Daniel Nagrin “Strange Hero”, Spanish Dance”

2013 Laban Institute of Movement Studies (LIMS) “Choreography” Movement analysis and creative, expressive and functional movement research at for Huntington’s disease patients

2010/11 Co-Curator: The Instant Of Combustion – Barbara Morgan Photo Exhibition, Herter Gallery, and the University Museum of Contemporary Art, Fine Arts Center, UMass Amherst

2010 Principal Investigator: National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Access to Artistic Excellence Grant (unfunded)

2008 The American Alliance for Theatre and Education (AATE)

Conference New York City: Explored the possibilities for theatre directors and dance choreographers to collaborate on non-musical plays

Grants Authored & Awarded:

2015 UMass Arts Council ($4200):  Dance Alumni guest choreographers, University Dancers performance and Tour

2015 Faculty Research Grant (1500): Choreography: Movement intervention for neurodegenerative diseases/Dance for Huntington’s disease (Dance for HD)

2014 Faculty Research Grant ($1000): Commission of “BESPOKE(n)” by Deborah Goffe

2014 UMass Arts Council ($4200): Guest Artist John Heginbotham, University Dancers performance and Tour

2013 UMass Arts Council ($4200): Guest Artist Sidra Bell, University Dancers performance and Tour

2012 UMass Arts Council ($4200): Guest Artist Sidra Bell, University Dancers performance and Tour


Awards and Search Committees

Spring 2016 Inaugural Manning Prize for Excellence in Teaching

Spring 2012 Personnel committee for Senior Lecturer promotion

AY ’15/’16 UMass dance Guest Artist/Lecturer Search (Jazz)

AY ‘15/’16 Chair, UMass dance FT/TT Assistant Professor Search (Dance Ed. Community Engagement)

AY ‘12/’13 UMass dance Guest Artist/Lecturer Search (Jazz)

AY ’12/’13 UMass dance FT/TT Assistant Professor Search (Ballet)

Five College Dance Department (FCDD)

2014- Present FCDD Executive Committee (heads of programs) member

2014 Hampshire College FT-TT Assistant Professor search committee member

2015 Hampshire College Mentor/Thesis advisor, Division III-Miriam King.

2015 Smith College, Second reader, MFA candidate, Stephanie Maher

2013 FCDD, Guest Artist/Lecturer Dance Ed/Community Engagement search committee member

2014 FCDD, Chair Ad-Hoc committee on Modern/Contemporary technique and curriculum

2010, 2011 Grant Writer: UMass Amherst Arts Council Block Grants


2007-Present Performance Project-First Generation, Guest Artist/artist mentor

2007-Present Springfield Conservatory of the Arts, Guest Artist/master teacher

2007-Present Greater Hartford Academy for the Arts, Guest Artist/master teacher


2015 Massachusetts Dance Festival, Advisor to Executive Committee

2010 Coordinator: Dancing Through College and Beyond & Kids Cafe Festival. A day for students, parents and teachers to explore dance opportunities in colleges and universities including movement classes, panel discussions and the College Resource Fair

2006-2008 Martha Hill Dance Fund. Board member

2003-2007 Scapegoat Garden. Founding Board member

Photos of Paul Dennis 

Photography by: Jim Coleman, Joshua Sugiyama, & Julie Lemberger



Contact Me

Paul Anthony Dennis
141 N. Pleasant Street #348
Amherst, MA 01004-0348