The Dance Institute at The University of Akron

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Akron Dance 39 R 922
Akron Dance 28 922

The Dance Institute's mission is to teach dance as an art form and inspire students to reach their full potential, whatever their goals might be.

Students as young as three years old can begin pre-ballet classes at The Dance Institute at The University of Akron, along with adult dance programs, Pilates on Saturdays, and convenient evening classes in ballet, pointe, contemporary, jazz, tap and more. Drop-in options are also available for select classes. Enrollment at The Institute continues on a rolling basis each year throughout the fall season, so students are welcome at any time.

The Dance Institute’s curriculums for its vast array of classes takes a holistic approach, addressing the whole student and making the experience fulfilling and meaningful for each individual.

“We meet you wherever you are in your dance journey,” says Rachael Palermo, manager of The Dance Institute’s Arts Preparatory Division. “If you want to try something new for your own personal enrichment, start your child on a new and creative path, or get a great workout, we’re here for you.”

The faculty at The Dance Institute includes professionals with a great depth and breadth of knowledge in their field, with professional performance and teaching experience.

“Our faculty is here to teach, of course, but also to advise students on their futures,” says Rachael. “They have knowledge and experience to share, and we’ve created a collaborative space here to help get students where they want to go in dance and in life.”

The Dance Institute also hosts guest artists working in different areas of dance and presenting students with options for careers in the field.

“Performing is just one way to go,” says Rachael. “My dance training helped me prepare for several different career opportunities. No matter where our students go, they will have a great foundation as a result of their training here at The Dance Institute.”

The Arts Preparatory Division at The Dance Institute, under Rachael’s direction, is planning to expand its programming into music and the visual arts. As a part of this pre-college division, The Dance Institute will continue to add more classes, including styles like hip-hop and musical theatre.

“It’s an exciting time at The Dance Institute and The Arts Preparatory Division,” says Rachael. “Even though we’ve been thriving since 1967, in many ways we’re just getting started”

The Dance Institute at The University of Akron is located at Guzzetta Hall 294 on the campus of The University of Akron. For more information go to, call 330-972-7949 or email