The Budapest Circus Arts and Contemporary Dance College is an institution of higher education in performing arts. The professional work of the College has a pedagogical tradition and curriculum development activities that go back several decades. The main milestones of changes in the institutional framework are as follows:


Budapest Circus Arts and Contemporary Dance College

In 2019, at the request of the National Centre for Circus Arts, we started to expand the training structure to ensure the long-term stability of the College. As a result of this process, since 1 August 2023 the institution has been operating under the name of Budapest Circus Arts and Contemporary Dance College, funded by the Circus Arts Higher Education Non-Profit Limited Liability Company. In September 2023, the new higher education courses in circus arts were launched: the Circus Artist BA course with a specialisation in equestrian acrobatics and clowning, and the Dancer and Assistant Choreographer BA course with a specialisation in circus dance. In the expanded structure, the different training areas will be developed in cooperation with each other, sharing pedagogical experience in the fields of contemporary dance and circus arts.


Budapest Contemporary Dance Academy

It was established on 14 June 2004, its founder and rector until 14 June 2023 was Iván Angelus, and also until June 2023 it was funded by the New Performing Arts Foundation. The first courses started in a four-year college structure, with courses in Contemporary Dance Artist, Contemporary Dance Teacher and Contemporary Dance Choreographer. After the transition to the Bologna structure, the courses continued as Dance Artist BA and Dance Teacher MA both with Contemporary Dance specialisation. In response to the changes in the Hungarian educational and cultural policies, the College continued to operate as an international institution from 2014, making its courses available to foreign students. During this period, our current staff members, Kamilla Reidl, acting rector, Dóra Furulyás, program coordinator of the Contemporary Dance Department, Anett Békési-Szombati, program coordinator of our Admission Preparation Course, and also Emese Cuhorka, Blanka Csasznyi, Kámea Farkas, Zoltán Batyu Farkas, Dávid MikóSándor Petrovics, Imre Vass, Kristóf Várnagy graduated from the College.


Budapest Secondary School of Dance

The training model of the Budapest Dance School officially continued as a vocational secondary school from 1998, with a full-time 4+1 year system. The editor and one of the authors of the state-recognised vocational training curriculum was Iván Angelus. The vocational school changed its name several times in line with changes in legislation. In addition to vocational training, the school also offered basic artistic training, where children and adults could learn contemporary dance. From 2005 the school was the teacher training school of the Budapest Contemporary Dance Academy. Kamilla Reidl, the current acting rector of the Academy, and our current teachers Blanka Csasznyi and Imre Vass started their studies in this training system, which was in operation until 2018.


Budapest Dance School

The Budapest Dance School was founded in 1991 by Iván Angelus, which was funded by the newly established New Performing Arts Foundation. In the first year the training was held in the afternoons, and from September 1992 onwards in the mornings, with the aim of training professional contemporary dance artists. In addition to the dance technique classes (Graham technique, Limon technique, contemporary dance, folk dance, ballet, contact, release), the students also did individual creative work as part of the school’s pedagogical program. The OFF Company was formed from the students of this training under the direction of Adrienn Hód, choreographer. Tamás Bakó, the current head of the Contemporary Dance Department, was a student of the school during this period.


Modern Dance School

After the change of regime, professional dance training began within the framework of the Contemporary Dance Association. György Szabó (programme organiser of the Petőfi Hall, later director of the Trafó House of Contemporary Arts), Jolán Török (executive director of the Association of Hungarian Dance Artists) and Gyula Berger, a dancer-choreographer joined the initiative of Iván Angelus and Ferenc Kálmán, and as a result of their collaboration the Modern Dance School was launched in 1990. The training, which was held in this form for one year in the afternoon, was the first attempt to create a professional dance training with a modern approach. The trainings took place at the Creative Movement Studio.


Creative Movement Studio

Also in 1983, Iván Angelus and Ferenc Kálmán founded the Creative Movement Studio, which operated until 1998. The Studio was the first in Hungary to offer dance classes in modern and contemporary dance techniques and improvisation, which were also open to amateur dancers. From children’s classes to adult classes, there were dance classes for all ages, as well as visual arts classes. The Studio also functioned as a rehearsal space in the afternoons, and international dance courses were organised there in summer and winter.


New Dance Club

In 1979, Iván Angelus and Ferenc Kálmán launched an initiative called the New Dance Club, which aimed to share hard-to-access professional information with the public interested in new dance techniques. The club included demonstrations of training sessions by invited professionals and a movement research group was also active there. The two of them also started a Dance-Improvisation-Physical Theatre course in 1982 in the Lágymányos Community Centre (now MU Theatre), where these modern dance techniques could be learned. In parallel, Iván Angelus also gave movement training sessions for actors at the Jókai Cultural Centre.