The University at Buffalo’s dance program is built on the belief that dance is a fundamental expression of humanity with the ability to inform, transform, reflect upon, and lead local and global change in the 21st century. UB Dance is a nurturing and challenging artistic community where Versatility Matters.
Our BA and BFA programs include comprehensive training in modern, ballet, tap and jazz, along with coursework in choreography, pedagogy, somatic practices, Laban Movement Analysis, history and criticism, research, dance kinesiology, improvisation, music theatre dance, and social dance. Unique to our programs are offerings in comparative jazz styles.
This broad course of study combined with strong interdisciplinary general education requirements cultivates resourceful and informed artists who work in concert dance, commercial dance, private sector, higher education, dance entrepreneurship, dance journalism and pursue graduate study.
Melanie Aceto is a dancer, choreographer, educator and researcher whose creative interests are in interdisciplinary solo and large group works. Melanie’s choreography has been performed internationally in Toronto, Guatemala, and Colombia, and nationally at numerous venues in major US cities. She regularly collaborates with composers, designers and poets presenting work in non-dance venues including silos, warehouses, moving barges, museums, and store front windows, among others.
Melanie’s research interests include investigating models for teaching dance composition and modern technique and creating resources for both. Her work has been published in the Journal of Dance Education and Dance Education in Practice and has been presented at national dance education and dance research conferences. Current projects include Choreographic Lineage, a web-based resource presenting the lineage of dance artists and the Digital Dance Access working group. Melanie earned her Master of Fine Arts degree in dance from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and is currently an Associate Professor at the University at Buffalo and the Director of Undergraduate Dance.
Michael Deeb Weaver is an accomplished dancer, actor, instructor, and choreographer splitting his time between New York City and Buffalo, NY. His experiences as a performer have ranged from concert dance to musical theatre to commercial work – and (almost) everything in between. He holds a BFA in Dance from the University at Buffalo, where he is also a current faculty member, teaching jazz, tap, and musical theatre dance styles.
Michael’s performance credits have taken him all over the world, including National Tours of A Chorus Line (Mike), and Young Frankenstein the Musical (Swing). As a member of the Actors’ Equity Association, he has served as Dance Captain, Assistant Choreographer, and/or Assistant Director for productions of Kinky Boots, Thoroughly Modern Millie, My Fair Lady, Gypsy, Mame, and Young Frankenstein the Musical (West Coast regional premiere). Additional regional theatre credits include West Side Story, Hello, Dolly!, Saturday Night Fever, Singin’ in the Rain, The Wizard of Oz, A Chorus Line, Joseph…, and Beauty and the Beast.
In addition to numerous industrials, Michael has performed for Celebrity Cruises and Six Flags. These experiences have allowed him to work with notable directors and choreographers like Baz Luhrmann, Connor Gallagher, Baayork Lee, Jeff Whiting, Jeffry Denman, Marc Robin, and Susan Stroman.