Natalie Anne Allen showed immense passion and drive while at the University of Arizona, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance and a Bachelor of Arts in communication and being recognized as an Outstanding Senior of the School of Dance.
The BFA program hasn’t been the only territory Allen excelled in. She also pursued a thematic minor in French art and culture, where she earned a 4.0 GPA.
“I always knew that I wanted to pursue an additional degree in college. I honestly kind of stumbled into the communication major but have thoroughly enjoyed every class I’ve taken,” Allen said.
Jazz and contemporary dance are genres that have always been important to Allen, and they are the forms of dance she wants to pursue in the future. She associates herself with more of the jazz/contemporary/modern side of dance and would love to pursue both commercial and concert work in the future.
The School of Dance is a core part of the College of Fine Arts, as well as “an extremely impressive attribute for the UA,” Allen said. Students come from all over to audition and study the curriculum in the program.
“My experience at UA dance has been beyond what I could have imagined,” Allen said. “As an out-of-state student, being far from my family was challenging to adjust at first, but the students and faculty in this program have truly become my home away from home.”
The UA dance faculty have extensive professional experience in dancing, as well as a remarkable expertise in dance and art education, according to Allen. Many faculty members are sought after as prime educators for dance festivals, workshops and schools all over the world.
“Natalie has distinguished herself in the dance program as a captivating performer, repeatedly featured in five of eight faculty members’ choreography in the jazz and modern genres,” said Melissa Lowe, a UA dance professor and the director of student services and adviser in the School of Dance.
Being accepted as a major in the dance program is one of Allen’s proudest moments.
At the beginning of her freshman year, she was only accepted as a jazz minor and knew if becoming a major was going to happen, she was going to have to work twice as hard.
She pushed herself and, in late September of her freshman year, she auditioned again and was “thrilled” to be accepted.
Allen aims for a professional career in dance with a company this summer, after graduation. She hopes to pursue a dance career that gives her the opportunity to do what she loves, which is perform. She also wants to explore teaching.
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Allen is looking forward to what the future holds. She encouraged others to get involved.
“This program is filled with the most talented, passionate and inspiring people I have ever encountered; it’s been humbling just to be surrounded by them every day,” Allen said. “The characteristics that the faculty instill in all of their students—dedication, perseverance, drive just to name a few—are so important going forward in this profession.”
The faculty holds a similar opinion of Allen.
“The dance faculty are proud to endorse Natalie and following her successes and accomplishments in years to come,” Lowe said.
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