Courses in the Ruby, Spring 2018
The Rubenstein Arts Center was designed with the arts in mind. This beautiful facility features an abundance of natural light, performance lighting systems in several studios, sound-proofing, dance-ready sprung floors, a student lounge—just to name a few of the tools in the Ruby that support the creative process.
Browse the offerings below and then visit DukeHub to secure your spot. These links will take you directly to the courses in each department:
- African and African American Studies
- Art, Art History & Visual Studies
- Arts of the Moving Image
- Innovation & Entrepreneurship
- MFA in Experimental and Documentary Arts
- Theater Studies
African and African American Studies
Hip Hop Production
Patrick Douthit (Ninth Wonder)
Introduction to Hip-Hop Production examines the history, background, functionality, and techniques of hip-hop production. This class will examine the art of sampling, borrowing, context, and practices in hip-hop production, while studying the history of beat machines and digital audio workstations.
Read more about the course and Ninth Wonder at Duke.
Art, Art History & Visual Studies
Create, Innovate, Act!
ARTSVIS 140/VMS 140/I&E 140
Introductory course for undergraduates across university (1st, 2nd YR). Interdisciplinary work bridging sciences, arts, and humanities with focus on gaining experiential knowledge through project creation and engagement with everyday contexts. Brings together diverse community of students interested in combining research methods, skills, and talents from broad range of professional and academic areas, all characterized by creative inquiry, innovation, and/or social concerns. Students can focus on any particular area, or combination thereof, benefiting from a group environment where peers are producing, sharing, and discussing their own inventions, speculative research, artworks, sound compositions, performances, media productions, or activist interventions. With exception of guest speaker events, all lectures delivered as flipped-course materials to maximize project production time during class. Technological, artistic, and social practice based skill formation also provided through integration of campus-wide offerings in specialized facilities, maker spaces, labs, and art studios. Local and international guest speakers include artists, activists, innovators, entrepreneurs, curators, and scholars.
ARTSVIS 451S.01 / AMI 451S.01 / VMS 451S.01
Practice-based production course examining the filmic realization and visualization of the artistic process. Screenings of bio-pics, documentaries and experimental films focusing on artists and various art forms compliment readings and hands on production exercises that will prepare students to undertake their own short video portrait of an artist or work of art.
Crosslisted in Art, Art History & Visual Studies
- Moving Image Practice (VMS 261S.02)
- Cinematography (VMS 260S.01)
Arts of the Moving Image
Moving Image Practice
AMI 301S.02 / THEATRST 370S.02 / VMS 261S.02
Like any craft, making movies is something that takes time, study, and practice. During the semester, students will be assigned reading, take part in discussions, and study the fundamental elements of video production, but the opportunity to learn the most will be found in the several short exercises students complete. By the end of the course, students will have a solid understanding of the building blocks of different types of video production. They will use digital video cameras and audio equipment, learn basic video editing with Final Cut Pro X (or a software of their choice), and create original work.
Writing the Movie
Students explore the fundamentals of screenwriting through weekly writing exercises, screenings, and in-depth classroom readings and discussions. Topics include the understanding, personalizing and application of basic story constructs, traditional screenplay formatting, links to narrative traditions, genre placement, business realities and more.
AMI 355S.01 / VMS 260S.01
This course introduces students to the art and practice of motion picture photography. Focus is on fundamental skills and technique, including lensing, camera operation, camera movement, and lighting, as well as the working relationships, constraints, responsibilities, approaches, strategies, motivations, and creative processes that inform cinematography. Elements of cinematic style, visual imagination, and storytelling are discussed, demonstrated, and executed through exercises. Practical considerations from the related and overlapping subjects of film producing and directing are treated as they relate to cinematography.
Editing for Film & Video
In the simplest of terms a motion picture editor creates relationships between shots in a film. However, what is at stake each time a relationship between two shots is established? From Russian montage to DW Griffith to the Avant-Garde to Hollywood this relationship between two shots has been variously envisioned as a cut, a collision, an interval, as something invisible, as something visible and even as the blink of the eye. In focusing on these relationships between shots, we will envision the role of the editor as that of author, storyteller, and political and historical agent.
Practically all the assignments in this class will be “found footage” exercises. We will appropriate materials we find on DVDs, television or the Internet and, we will explore various archives, re-editing the materials we find to make new moving image works. We will explore the history of found footage filmmaking from Esther Shub to contemporary mash-ups. Expect to acquire skills in editing digitally using Adobe Premiere Pro.
Crosslisted in Arts of the Moving Image
- Filming Art (AMI 451S.01)
Andrea Woods Valdéz
The basic elements of movement (time, space, weight, flow) and their choreographic applications explored through structured improvisation, short movement studies, viewing of videotaped dances, and selected readings. Experimentation with devices for movement manipulation and choreographic forms through longer movement studies. Prerequisite: a beginning level dance technique course (modern, ballet, jazz, or African) or consent of instructor.
Practice course to experience the components of Kundalini Yoga – breath work (pranayam), movement, postures (asanas, mudras), focus techniques (meditation, drishti), use of sound current (mantra), and relaxation techniques. For a more intensive study of Kundalini Yoga that includes practice, lecture, writing and discussion, see full credit course Dance 357L.
Performance & Technology
DANCE 308 / THEATRST 364
Workshop exploration of technologies embedded in performance: robots, media, computer interface. Students create performance projects and discuss theoretical and historical implications of technologies in performance. Open to dancers, actors, musicians, spoken word artists and all those interested in technology and the arts. No previous experience or programming skills required.
Postmodernism in Dance
An examination of American modern dance since the 1950s, which reinstructed what kinds of movements were considered “dance” and what kind of dance was considered art. Postmodern dance as iconoclastic and inclusive, embracing performance art and film, theater and hip hop, fostering the rebirth of modern dance in Europe between 1970-90, and now re-absorbing and recycling the new forms it helped to create. Videos of dancing, guests, workshops, performances.
Kundalini Yoga And Sikh Dharma
Introduction to Kundalini Yoga and meditation and yogic lifestyle as taught by Yogi Bhajan through practice, lecture, writing and discussion. Overview of the basic philosophy of Sikh Dharma and the development of Sikhism and Kundalini Yoga in the Western Hemisphere.
Music for Dancers
DANCE 375 / MUSIC 342
Exploration of the elements of music, music structures, and their relationship to movement and dance. Practical emphasis on rhythmic fundamentals, rhythm notation, musicality, mindful listening, and how they apply to choreography/composition and dance class. Daily movement, rhythm and/or choreographic exercises, both solo and in groups, along with written assignments. Useful for dance students interested in the dance/music connection.
Beyond Technique: Art of Performance
Barbara Dickenson and Tyler Walters
Examination of the complex artistic process of performance necessary to realize the choreographer’s intent; development of interpretive abilities beyond the mastery of technique and style; classic and contemporary approaches to embodying content. Readings in the literature of performance and imaging; written analysis of performance; vigorously coached rehearsal sessions.
Prerequisite: intermediate/advanced level of modern, ballet, or African dance technique.
Dance Technique and Repertory
Elementary Modern Dance
Technical and artistic training in the modern dance idiom through technique, improvisation and composition. First steps in developing skill, clarity and motivational intent as well as strength and flexibility. No previous dance experience necessary.
Advanced Beginning Ballet
Barre work concentrating on body alignment and correct placement within the ballet vocabulary followed by center adagio and allegro sequences.
African Dance Tech I
Introduction to African dance styles and related rhythmic structures from selected countries such as Guinea, Senegal, Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire. Taught in the context of their social, occupational, and religious functions.
Jazz Dance I
Hip Hop II
Hip-Hop, an inner-city culture that has created its own art, language, fashion, music and dance styles. This is the second level of Hip Hop dance and requires previous dance experience with the form. Using dance as a time-line the course explores the history, development and core elements of hip-hop dance culture.
Andrea Woods Valdéz
Increased complexity of movement sequences and greater emphasis on clarity of expression and quality of performance.
Adv. Intermediate ballet
Greater complexity of barre and center sequences with increased emphasis on correctness of style and quality of performance.
Andrea Woods Valdéz
Technical and artistic training in the modern dance idiom at an advanced level. Increased complexity of movement sequences and emphasis on clarity of expression, musicality, and quality of performance.
Progression of Dance 220 with increased emphasis on line, style, and performance-level quality and technique. Diverse batterie, pirouettes, and tours included in allegro combinations.
Andrea Woods Valdéz
Intensive modern dance training at the Intermediate and advanced levels.
The study of choreography and performance through participation in the mounting of a dance work from inception through rehearsal to performance. Consent of instructor required.
Continuation of Dance 320. Daily training for the performing student at the advanced/professional level.
The study of choreography and performance through participation in the mounting of a dance work from inception through rehearsal to performance. Separate enrollment in dance technique is required. Consent of instructor required.
Crosslisted in Dance
Innovation & Entrepreneurship
Introduction to Performing Arts Management and Entrepreneurship
I&E 290.02 / MUSIC 290.01 / DANCE 290.01 / THEATRST 290S-4.02
This course, tailored for students who are considering careers in the arts, seeks to teach the foundations of performing arts management and equip students with knowledge of the business and entrepreneurial aspects of the arts and creative industries. It will engage a broad variety of guest speakers, including visiting artists brought to campus by Duke Performances, Duke alumni working in the performing arts, and members of the region’s burgeoning performing arts scene. Readings will be pulled from arts criticism, arts management case studies, memoirs and books on the performing arts, and journalism about the business of performing arts, including timely articles that will be added throughout the semester. Students will be required to attend a number of live performances. The course will include a final project, where student teams conduct assessments of local arts organizations and creative ventures.
Course topics include: Business Models in the Arts: For-Profit, Non-Profit, and Beyond; Programming and Curation; Marketing, Branding, and Building an Audience; Leadership in the Arts; Arts Budgeting and Finance; Fundraising and Income Streams; Arts Law, Contracts, and Intellectual Property; Careers in the Arts; and more.
Permission of the instructor is required—see the full course description for details.
Crosslisted in Innovation & Entrepreneurship
- Create, Innovate, Act! (I&E 140)
MFA in Experimental and Documentary Arts
Experiments in the Moving Image
Alex Cunningham and Jason Sudak
Poetic and experimental image-making, utilizing techniques that trace a historical trajectory from celluloid to digital. Exploration of cinematographic principles and cameraless experiments. Readings and screenings focusing on avant-garde film and digital traditions supplement student productions.
- Introduction to Performing Arts Management and Entrepreneurship (MUSIC 290.01)
- Music for Dancers (MUSIC 342)
- Introduction to Performing Arts Management and Entrepreneurship (THEATRST 290S-4.04)
- Performance & Technology (THEATRST 364)
- Moving Image Practice (THEATRST 370S.02)