Colleen Thomas-Young

Associate Professor of Professional Practice in Dance

Colleen Thomas joined the Barnard faculty in 2007. She has also taught at the New School and at Long Island University (Brooklyn Campus).

Professor Thomas's teaching at Barnard includes advanced modern-dance technique, introductory ballet technique, contact improvisation, and advanced composition/collaboration and the creative process. She is also the director of the Barnard Dance in Paris program.

She is the artistic director of Colleen Thomas Dance and co-director for Bill Young/Colleen Thomas and Co. Professor Thomas has performed both nationally and internationally with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Bebe Miller Company, Nina Wiener Dance Company, and Donald Byrd/The Group.

Professor Thomas' choreographic works have been performed in Brazil, Estonia, Hong Kong, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, Taiwan, and Venezuela, among others. She has also shown her work at many domestic venues, including California State University at Long Beach, Bates College, Columbia University, Connecticut College, Southern Theater in Minnesota, University of Maryland, The Boston Conservatory, Kumble Arts Center, Dance New Amsterdam, Hundred Grand, Dance Theater Workshop, Joyce SoHo, Kaye Playhouse, SUNY Purchase, Dance Theater Workshop, and Danspace Project.


Academic Focus: 

Modern dance


Contact improvisation



B.A., SUNY Empire State College and SUNY Purchase

M.F.A., University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

In the News

This year marked the ninth year in a row that the Barnard Dance in Paris program has sent students to France, with professor of professional practice Colleen Thomas-Young, for an immersive education in Paris. 

Every year, Barnard faculty lead students on trips outside New York City—often outside the United States—to conduct research, perform, and expand teaching and learning opportunities.

Prof. Thomas-Young's current neurological study uses EEG to observe brain activity during choreographed and improvised dance.

Over the past decade, the Barnard curriculum has expanded its global influence by increasing opportunities for faculty and students to gain educational, work, and volunteer experience.

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