Year of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

MFA: Dance

Directing Professor

Jeffery N. Bullock


This thesis writing includes research about the intersections of sacred space, rituals, spirituality, artistic expression, and performance. Performance can serve as an event for transcendence, a gateway to the sacred space and the essences. The concept of sacred space and transcendence within performance expands beyond spatial boundaries, encompassing various art forms, particularly dance. Ritual, one artifact of human experience, is redefined in a contemporary context, serving as a vehicle for transformative experiences within performances. This thesis explores the nuanced dynamics between performers, audiences, and performance spaces to uncover transformative journeys for all involved. Sacred space, a central theme, is examined through diverse cultural perspectives that challenge conventional definitions and highlight the significance of actions, movements, performances, and rituals in imbuing spaces with sacredness. Drawing from cultural examples ranging from African societies to contemporary performance practices, the thesis underscores the relational nature of sacred space and its connection to transcendence. Transcendence in performance as a focal point prompts questions about the nature of transformative art and audience reception. Transcendent performances offer moments of enchantment and transformation by blurring the boundaries between performers and audiences. Drawing from the conceptions and writings of several theorists/practitioners/philosophers, the thesis illuminates the potential of performance as a catalyst for societal change and personal growth. In conclusion, this thesis offers a deep exploration of sacred space, ritual, and transcendence in performance, shedding light on the profound impact of artistic expression on human consciousness.

Performance Access Statement

If you wish to see the creative piece or performance that accompanied this thesis, please complete the Request Form, and you should receive a response from the Dance Department within two weeks.

Included in

Dance Commons