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Daniel Burkholder

Associate Professor, Dance

Director, Dance MFA Program


MFA, Performing Arts: Dance, UW-Milwaukee
MA, Dance, American University
BA, Liberal Arts, Sarah Lawrence


Daniel Burkholder is the Director of The PlayGround, a dance performance group, and Co-Director of Improv Arts, inc. He has served as a curator for the DC International Improvisation Festival and on the Steering Committee for the West Coast Contact Improvisation Festival. His work has been seen at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (WDC), 92nd Street Y (NYC), Tribeca Performing Arts Center (NYC), 848 Community Space (SF), Mascher Space Co-Op (Philadelphia), Dance Place (WDC), The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center (MD), along with numerous indoor and outdoor spaces. Daniel’s work has been commissioned by James Madison University, CrossCurrents Dance Company, Dance Place, Joy of Motion Dance Centers, and Choreographers Collaboration Project. He has been awarded the Local Dance Commissioning Project by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts to develop “together/apart (we go each our way)”. Daniel has created over 40 works and has received the Metro DC Dance Award for “Outstanding Performance by a Group”, Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Awards in Solo Dance Performance and Choreography, and his work has been selected for numerous showcases. He has taught at the West Coast Contact Improvisation Festival, University of Maryland College Park, American University, George Washington University, James Madison University, Dance Place, CityDance Center at Strathmore, and as guest teacher for Cirque du Soleil. Daniel has performed with Scott Wells & Dancers, Jess Curtis & Stephanie Maher, Beth Davis in Good Company, and improvisationaly with Nancy Stark Smith, Katie Duck, Sharon Mansur, among others. Daniel was the D.C./Local Dancers’ Rehearsal Director for the D.C. presentation of White Oak Dance Project’s “Past Forward” program, and from 2009-2014 was an Artist-in-Residence at Georgetown University Hospital working with patients, care givers, and staff. Daniel has degrees from University of Wisconsin Milwaukee (M.F.A.), American University (M.A.), Sarah Lawrence College (B.A.) and is a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner.