BYU Ballroom Dance Company

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The BYU Ballroom Dance Company originates in the Department of Dance of the College of Fine Arts and Communications at Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, Utah. It has been a part of BYU for nearly 50 years and competes and performs throughout the world.


For years BYU offered dance classes that included several genres, but with a specific focus on social dance. BYU's dance company didn't exist until 1953 when Alma Heaton joined the faculty as a recreation professor. Heaton came to BYU having taught social dance for a nationally recognized dance studio, and it seemed logical to continue that instruction at the university level. Heaton's work set the stage for BYU to become a leader in ballroom dance.[1] The Ballroom Dance program has been growing ever since and is now the largest collegiate ballroom dance program in the world.[2] In 1960[3] Benjamin F. de Hoyos (a BYU professor in the BYU College of Health and Human Performance) founded the Ballroom Dance Company and was the director for 10 years. Following de Hoyos, Roy and June Mavor directed the company from 1970 to 1975 when Emerson Lyman and his wife LeGene took the reins. In 1980 Lee Wakefield and his wife Linda began directing the company. Starting in 2015, Curt and Sharon Holman took the reins as directors of the company and they continue to do so today.[4] "BYU was the first university to introduce dance into its curriculum; the school's involvement in the sport stretches back for a long time," observes Brian McDonald, president of the National Dance Council of America, which governs dance competitions in the United States. "And now BYU is, without question, the most influential school in the nation in terms of identifying dance as both a sport and a respected curriculum."[1]



  • Curt and Sharon Holman: Curt and his wife Sharon are former competitors in Professional Latin American and Theater Arts Category. As Cabaret dancers they were finalists in U.S., British and World competitions. Both have master's degrees in Dance (MFA, Brigham Young University) and are dual licentiates with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance. Curt, an associate Professor, is currently the division director of Ballroom Dance at Brigham Young University. Sharon directs the BYU Ballroom Dance for youth program.[5]
  • Brent Keck: Brent is a former competitor in the Professional Latin-American division and holds a master's degree in dance. He is a dual licentiate with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance and is recognized by the NDCA as a "Championship" judge. Currently Brent is the National Committee Executive Secretary for the USISTD and is a full-time faculty member at BYU. As an Assistant Professor Brent is integral in the administration of the BYU ballroom program. His excellence in teaching and choreography are evidenced by his direction of the BYU Youth Dancesport "A" Teams which have won United States National Championship formation titles in the Youth Latin and Ballroom categories multiple times.[6]
  • Marci Edgington: Marci Edgington directs the Social Dance Program at the University. She holds a master's degree in dance (MFA, Brigham Young University) and is a dual licenciate with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance.[5]


The BYU Ballroom Dance Company has 160 members[7] and is currently composed of five teams. It is directed by Curt and Sharon Holman.[8] The five teams include: The Touring Company, directed by Curt and Sharon Holman; The Showcase Company, directed by Brent Keck; Ensemble I (intermediate), directed by Marci Edgington; and Ensembles II and III (beginning), directed by staff members. In addition to the team directors, Katie Davidson plays a central role to the program as the Ballroom Dance Department Secretary, managing daily office affairs, student logistics and management at Dancesport competitions.[citation needed]


The BYU Dance Company currently competes on both the National and International Level. The most recognized competitions that BYU participates in are: The United States National Formation Championships, The World Formation Championships (NDCA), and The British Formation Championships. Though all three competitions are highly competitive, The British Formation Championship is the most prestigious event in the competitive dance arena for individual competitors (though not for formation teams).[9] All three competitions comprise a variety of events in both the International Standard and Latin categories but the BYU Ballroom Dance Company only competes in the team formation events.


The BYU Ballroom Dance Company has consistently won numerous prestigious awards in the competitive arena. Since 1982, the team has annually won the NDCA title of United States National Formation Dance Champions.[10]

Since 1971, the company has competed at the highly esteemed British Open ballroom competition every three years,[9] most often placing first in both Latin and Standard formation categories.

The BYU Ballroom Dance Company are the first Americans to win the highly esteemed British Formation Championships, and they have done so ten times.[11]



The BYU Ballroom Dance Company touring team has been touring since 1971; visiting many countries and cities throughout the world.[12]

  • 2017-18 1. New York, Virginia, Washington DC, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts [13]
  • 2016-17 1. Chile and Argentina
  • 2015-16 1. England, Scotland, and Wales
  • 2014-15 1. Arizona, Utah 2. Nauvoo, IL
  • 2013-14 1. China
  • 2009-10 1. Utah, Nevada, California. 2. England and Scotland
  • 2008-09 1. Idaho, Oregon, Washington 2. Mid-West and Eastern United States
  • 2007-08 1. Arizona, Utah 2. Hong Kong, China
  • 2006-07 1. New Mexico, Texas 2. England, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Italy, France, Spain
  • 2005-06 1. Colorado, Wyoming 2. Ukraine, Nauvoo, IL
  • 2004-05 1. Northern Nevada and California 2. Hawaii, New Zealand, Australia, French Polynesia, Nauvoo, IL
  • 2003-04 1. Southern Utah, Nevada, California 2. England, Belgium, France, Spain, Nauvoo, IL
  • 2002-03 1. Washington
  • 2001-02 1. Wyoming 2. Mid-West and Eastern United States
  • 2000-01 1. New Mexico, Texas 2. England, Norway, Sweden, Denmark
  • 1999-00 1. Arizona 2. Hong Kong, People’s Republic of China, Far East Russia, South Korea, Mongolia
  • 1998-99 1. Northern Nevada, California 2. South Africa
  • 1997-98 1. Oregon, Washington, Idaho 2. England, Scotland
  • 1996-97 1. Southern Nevada, California 2. Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Russia, Finland 3. Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines
  • 1995-96 1. Arizona 2. Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia 3. Taiwan, Malaysia
  • 1994-95 1. New Mexico, Texas 2. England, Scotland, Belgium, Germany, France
  • 1993-94 1. Northern Nevada, California 2. Russia, Ukraine, Hungary
  • 1992-93 1. Washington, Oregon, Idaho 2. Utah, California, People’s Republic of China, Republic of China, Thailand
  • 1991-92 1. Utah, Nevada, Southern California 2. England, Belgium, Netherlands
  • 1990-91 1. Northern California 2. California, Illinois, Michigan, Canada, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland, Washington D.C.
  • 1989-90 1. Miami, Florida (United States Ballroom Championships) 2. Stuttgart, Germany (World Ballroom Championships) 3. Arizona 4. Tahiti, New Zealand, Australia, Hawaii
  • 1988-89 1. Miami, Florida (United States Ballroom Championships) 2. New Mexico 3. England, Belgium, West Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, Michigan
  • 1987-88 1. Miami, Florida (United States Ballroom Championships) 2. Southern California 3. Tennessee, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana
  • 1986-87 1. Miami, Florida (United States Ballroom Championships) 2. Bremen, Germany (World Ballroom Championships) 3. Northern California 4. People’s Republic of China, Republic of China, Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand
  • 1985-86 1. Miami, Florida (United States Ballroom Championships) 2. Washington, Oregon, Idaho 3. England, New York
  • 1984-85 1. New York (United States Ballroom Championships) 2. Southern Utah, Nevada, California 3. Jordan (Jerash Festival)
  • 1983-84 1. New York (United States Ballroom Championships) 2. Northern California 3. People’s Republic of China, Republic of China, Thailand, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Hawaii
  • 1982-83 1. Southern Nevada, California, Arizona, New Mexico 2. England, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Austria
  • 1981-82 1. Northwest U.S.
  • 1980-81 1. Southern California 2. England
  • 1979-80 1. Washington
  • 1978-79 1. Northern California 2. England, Belgium, Netherlands
  • 1977-78 1. Oregon, Washington, Alberta 2. Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma
  • 1976-77 1. Idaho, Oregon, Washington 2. England, Scotland
  • 1974-75 1. England
  • 1972-73 1. New York
  • 1971-72 1. Idaho, Oregon, Washington 2. New Mexico, Texas


The BYU Ballroom Dance Company annually presents Ballroom Dance in Concert and has done so for twenty-seven years.[14] The concerts are currently performed in the Marriott Center at BYU, but prior to 1987 the concerts were performed in the Smith Field House at BYU. The pieces are the creative works of Ballroom Dance Company directors Lee and Linda Wakefield, as well as guest choreographers and professional champion dancers from across the United States and Canada.[14] The concerts first received individual names in 2003; prior concerts were simply titled "Ballroom Dance in Concert".

  • 2015; Bravo!
  • 2014; Light Up the Night
  • 2013; Jump and Jive
  • 2012; Stripes and Starz
  • 2011; Imagine
  • 2010; Encore
  • 2009; Viva Espana
  • 2008; Seize The Beat
  • 2007; Zoot Suit Sizzle
  • 2006; Capture The Magic
  • 2005; Cinemagic
  • 2004; Rhythms of Rio
  • 2003; Light Up The Night
  • 2002-1982 Ballroom Dance in Concert

See also

External links

  • Brigham Young University Home Page
  • BYU Department of Dance Performing Groups
  • BYU Ballroom Dance Company


  1. ^ a b Adams, Kellene Ricks, Amazing Grace, BYU Magazine Winter 1998
  2. ^ Benjamin, Bob (January 20, 2006). BYU Ballroom Dance
  3. ^ Bergera, Gary James; Priddis, Ronald (1985). "Chapter 8: Arts, Entertainment, & Literature". Brigham Young University: A House of Faith. Salt Lake City: Signature Books. ISBN 0-941214-34-6. OCLC 12963965.
  4. ^ Performing Arts Management, Ballroom Dance Company, Press Kit, Fact Sheet March 2008 [1]
  5. ^ a b c BYU Dancesport Championships About Us
  6. ^
  7. ^ Adams, Kellene Ricks, Amazing Grace, BYU Magazine Winter 1998
  8. ^ Swift, E.M., Calling Arthur Murray, Sports Illustrated, April 24, 1995 [2]
  9. ^ a b News Release, Ballroom Dance Company, April 2005 Archived 2007-11-21 at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ General News Release March 2008
  11. ^, BYU Ballroom Dance Company, Jan. 20, 2006
  12. ^ Performing Arts Management, Ballroom Dance Company, Press Kit, Tour History Feb. 2008 [3]
  13. ^
  14. ^ a b BYU News Release, March 31, 2008
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