Events at an ACDA Conference

Conference coordinators are encouraged to plan their conferences in the best way for their particular institution, region and with their own creative vision. Following are some events that are required for ACDA sponsorship and others that have become part of most conferences. Conferences are not limited to the list below.

Classes/workshops (required):

Conference Coordinators must schedule a minimum of two full days of classes, workshops and presentations. Recent conferences have scheduled at least three days of classes.

Faculty-only Classes, Faculty Research Presentations, Student Research Presentations, Panels, Roundtables:

Conference Coordinators are encouraged to broaden the range of class/presentation offerings to offer additional opportunities for both students and faculty. It is recommended to offer at least one faculty-only class/day.

Adjudication Concerts and Feedback Sessions (required):

Conference Coordinators must schedule adjudication concerts and feedback sessions in order to qualify for ACDA sponsorship.

Gala Concert (required in a National Festival year):

In a National Festival year a Gala Concert comprised of adjudicated works must be scheduled. In a non-National year, a gala concert is optional.

Meetings (required):

  1. Adjudicator Orientation Meeting
  2. ACDA Membership Meeting
  3. Regional Planning Meeting

The Conference Coordinator, in conjunction with the Regional Director, is responsible for the scheduling of (a) Adjudicator Orientation Meeting, (b) ACDA Membership Meeting and (c) Regional Planning Meeting. Student representatives should be invited to the ACDA Membership Meeting.

Informal Concert(s):

Most conferences have a least one informal concert. Guidelines for informal concerts are included in Templates for Conference Materials. These are guidelines and are not ACDA official policy. Each conference may set its own Informal Concert guidelines.

Pre-adjudication Panel with Adjudicators:

It is highly recommended that the conference include a panel with the adjudicators before the first adjudication concert. This event introduces the adjudicators to the conference participants and gives a forum for understanding each adjudicator’s individual artistic vision, perspective and approach to feedback. This panel should not conflict with any other conference activities. The Executive Committee Representative at the conference usually facilitates this panel.

Adjudicator Reflection Session:

In non-National years only, the conference coordinator may choose to schedule an adjudicator reflection session. Conference Coordinators opting not to produce a gala concert are strongly encouraged to include an adjudicator reflection session after all dances have received feedback. If having a gala, the session would allow adjudicators to speak about why they chose particular dances for the gala concert and/or provide general responses to the works seen during the conference. The session must be scheduled after gala decisions have been posted.

Guest Artist/Faculty Concert:

Often conferences present concerts in addition to the adjudication concerts. Some conferences include a concert solely for faculty choreographed and performed works. Coordinators should develop guidelines for works to be included in a faculty concert. Performers should be faculty or professional dancers.

Some conferences schedule guest artist concerts. Some conferences combine faculty and guest artist performances. This is usually done with adjudicators who wish to perform and/or present work.

Social events for faculty and students:

It is recommended that opportunities for both student and faculty interaction be provided. Social events should be provided for conference participants early in the conference if possible.

Student Forum:

Provide a time and place for students to come together to discuss relevant issues. This should be planned in consultation with the Regional Director.

Additional events:

Conference coordinators may schedule additional events in any way that is feasible for their facilities and budget. Additional events at past conferences have included concerts featuring works using technology, dance video/film showings, social events with live bands, lessons in social dances distinct to the region, receptions in art galleries with live performances, site-specific work, alternative feedback for adjudication and/or informal concerts, brown bag lunchtime discussions.


Download a pdf of Conference Events.