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Herberger College chair of dance hails from the Netherlands

Simon Dove, chair of Herberger College Dance.

Photo by Tom Story.

May 24, 2007

TEMPE, Ariz. - After an international search, the Herberger College of the Arts at Arizona State University announced that it has appointed Simon Dove as chair of its Department of Dance. Dove, 48, is a contemporary dance expert from Britain who has directed the Springdance international contemporary dance festival in the Netherlands since 2000.

Dove's 20 years of experience directing dance and arts programs throughout Europe is a significant asset to Herberger College Dance, already considered one of the top educational programs in the country. Dove will be a catalyst for developing new approaches to dance education at ASU as the field enters a critical stage where new artistic forms must be created to engage young audiences.

"Future generations of dance artists need a broader and more diverse set of skills, competencies and approaches," says Dove. "I relish the opportunity this post offers to play a role in nurturing new artists to meet these challenges. Herberger College's interdisciplinary approach, along with ASU's commitment to excellence through research, diversity and global engagement offers a potent paradigm for developing new models for dance education."

Dove arrives in July from the Netherlands with his partner Shaila and two children and begins his new position August 1. Herberger College Dean Kwang-Wu Kim is optimistic that Dove will infuse the college with a fresh approach to dance education.

"I am delighted that we were able to attract an individual of Simon’s stature, intellect and experience, and that he has committed to joining the college’s leadership team," Kim says. "I believe this bodes well for dance at ASU and for the future of our college."

Pegge Vissicaro, former interim director of Herberger College Dance, feels Dove is vital to helping the program realize its vision of becoming a global center of dance excellence.

"As director of the Springdance Festival, Simon had access to cutting-edge contemporary dance trends worldwide," Vissicaro says. "He definitely is the one that will facilitate Herberger College Dance becoming an exemplar to which other departments will aspire."

The Department of Dance is a division of the Herberger College of the Arts at Arizona State University. Dance Teacher magazine says "the top-notch dance program graduates dancers who aren't merely accomplished technicians, but critical thinkers and socially conscious advocates of the art form as well." To learn more, visit

Founded in 1964, Herberger College comprises four nationally ranked academic units: School of Music, School of Art, Department of Dance and School of Theatre and Film, plus the Arts, Media and Engineering Program and the ASU Art Museum. Nearly 2,600 students attend the college, which has 170 faculty and 150 staff. Since 2004, 25 National Merit Scholars and 13 National Hispanic Scholars have chosen the Herberger College as their place of study. To learn more about the college,

Media Contact:
Laura Toussaint