Back to top

Photograph of Britta Peterson

Britta Peterson Professorial Lecturer Department of Performing Arts

Send email to Britta Peterson
(202) 885-1432 (Office)
CAS - Performing Arts
Katzen Arts Center - 238
Additional Positions at AU
Professorial Lecturer

Book Currently Reading
"Crying in H Mart" by Michelle Zaunder;
"Braiding Sweetgrass" by Robin Wall Kimmerer;
"The Ministry for the Future" by Kim Stanley Robinson
Britta Joy Peterson is an award winning choreographer, collaborator and educator. Raised in the midwest, creatively pressure-cooked by the southwest, re-centered in community by the pacific northwest, and cracked open by the wild west, BJP is now an east coast creative based in Washington, DC. Creative work has been seen at the Sibu International Dance Festival—Sarawak, Malaysia, Performance Mix 33—New York City, NY, Arts and Society Conference—Paris, France, European Society for Literature, Science and the Arts—Basel, Switzerland, Dance Place—Washington, DC, Triskelion Arts—Brooklyn, NY,  Sonics Immersive Media Lab—London, UK, and the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts—Washington, DC.

BJP’s research practice churns at the intersection of body, question, theory, relation and design. Current projects engage questions surrounding the climate crisis, holding space and the ethics of attunement. BJP is an Artist in Residence at Dance Place. Her work has recently been supported by the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, NEA CARES, DC Commission for Humanities and the Arts, the Mellon Fund at American University, The Iron Factory – Philadelphia, PA, Bainbridge Dance Center—Bainbridge Island, WA, and Great River Educational Arts Theatre—Waite Park, MN.

BJP approaches performance as research practice, as well as means to connect with community. BJP co-created SHIT GOLD with Erica Badgely; a low stakes, high focus open mic performance platform at Velocity Dance Center in Seattle, WA. She also created and ran the Propelling Professional Performance Project, raising over $50k, to connect students with professional artists via immersive creative processes in Rock Springs, Wyoming. Her current platform, Exquisite Frame, is presented in partnership with Dance Place with a rotating co-curator. Exquisite Frame is a performance series that leverages the precarious potential of the digital platform.

BJP also specializes in dance for the theatrical stage, developing fresh material for classic plays and musicals, and devising choreographies and movement languages for new theatre works. Recent projects include work with  Imagination Stage—Bethesda, MD, the Lyric Repertory Theatre—Logan, UT, the Paramount Theatre—St. Cloud, MN, and numerous college and university productions.

BJP is an active educator, both in university and professional settings. Active research in curricular design for the dynamic arts environment continuously yields new class, workshops, and programs such as American University’s new Dance Program curriculum, launched in 2017, for which she was the co-recipient of the 2017 Anne S. Ferren Curriculum Design Award. BJP was also a recipient of the 2020 AU College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Mentorship award. Her university choreography has been selected multiple times for ACDA Gala Presentation, as well as for the ACDA National Conference. She teaches in the DMV at Dance Place, and offers workshops periodically – stay up to date. She holds her BA in Dance and Communications, magna cum laude, from Gustavus Adolphus College and her MFA in Dance, summa cum laude, from Arizona State University.

Image by Mariah Miranda
See Also
Dance Program
For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.


Fall 2021

  • DNCE-313 Contemporary Dance III

  • DNCE-465 Adv Stds in Critical Inquiry: Dance Pedagogy

  • DNCE-470 Dance Capstone

Spring 2022

  • DNCE-055 AU Dance Company

  • DNCE-215 Jazz Dance II

  • DNCE-475 Closing Seminar