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Research Guides

Seattle Dance Schools

Special Collections holds records from two major dance training programs in Seattle: the University of Washington Dance Program and the Cornish College of the Arts.

The University of Washington Dance Divison records span the years 1961 to 1986. The Cornish School of the Allied Arts records cover the years 1893 to 1989. Additional information about later archival materials for Cornish can be found on the Cornish College of the Arts Library site.  

Cornish School of Allied Arts records

The Cornish School of Allied Arts was founded by Nellie C. Cornish in 1914. It was the first school in the western United States to offer comprehensive training in the arts. In 1986, the name changed to the Cornish College of the Arts, to convey the mission of the college to provide the best possible training at a college level for professional artists.

University of Washington Dance Division records

Before 1965, modern dance courses were offered through Physical & Health Education and ballet was offered through drama. In 1975, the Dance Division was moved to the School of Music, before becoming a separate program in 1988.


Undated picture postcard of Cornish School of Allied Arts