Teaching and learning
The SNDO programme is a carefully curated maze of workshops, longer and shorter courses, labs, encounters and performance periods that enable the most relevant and newest practices and developments to find a place in the curriculum alongside established ones. Students are expected to follow and engage with all the different programme components, especially when these differ from what the student is already familiar with. The search for nuance and the opening up of new registers in ways of moving and thinking – through commitment, curiosity and an investigative approach – is highly valued and expected of students.
As a school the SNDO is a research lab where different practices meet. A number of Amsterdam-based artists regularly teach at the SNDO. These practitioners’ workshops and courses grow and develop through time. The fact that every year a study group has its own dynamic leads to courses never having a static formula. Guest teachers and artists develop their teaching practice and refine their own pedagogical skills not only prior to entering SNDO but also, and especially, by and through teaching in this context. For the majority of teachers and artists the educative practice is an extension of their professional work as choreographers, practitioners, dancers or theoreticians. This can mean that by entering the classroom the guest is entering into not only the first encounter with the students, but also with this context. This requires openness and generosity on behalf of guest and students alike. This also means that approaches to teaching, creating a lab, hosting a seminar and conducting a workshop will vary from one course to another.
The SNDO places an emphasis on several different types of counseling for the students: Study counseling (mentor & tutor), performance advice (mentor & advisor) and practical matters (Academy of Theatre and Dance student counselor).
The programme addresses the student’s maturity, independency and care for the discipline, field and world of dance and choreography beyond being a receiver of what the school can provide. Commitment and participation – both in flesh and spirit - are seen as a basic and most relevant study tools throughout the four years. Maturity, collegiality and communal consciousness are required from each of the students.