CAAM Chinese Dance Theater is a division of the Chinese American Association of Minnesota (CAAM), the oldest and largest Chinese American community organization in Minnesota. Often known as CAAM Chinese Dance Theater or even just CAAM-CDT, we are a 501 (c)(3) non-profit performing arts and dance academy dedicated to preserving and honoring Chinese cultural heritage. We are available for community performances, workshops and residencies.
CAAM Chinese Dance Theater is supported by the generous contributions of foundations, businesses and corporations, as well as individual contributors.
Founded in 1992, we are the oldest Chinese dance company in the Midwest. CAAM Chinese Dance Theater has enjoyed remarkably stable leadership since its inception, and currently serves under artistic direction of Jinyu Zhou, a world-renown choreographer and teacher. We have fall and spring semester classes culminating in formal performances. Our annual Lunar New Year’s production at the O’Shaughnessy Auditorium is the highlight of the Lunar New Year in Minnesota.
We hold a short summer session for students to build their skills and learn dances for performance. In addition to the performance classes, we also have non-performance skill and fitness classes. Our youngest dancer ever was 18 months old, and our oldest dancer is over 70 years old! Curiosity and interest are the only prerequisites for taking one of our classes. Prior dance experience is not required, and you do not need to be able to speak Chinese.
Other Activities and Performances
In addition to traditional year-round dance instruction, CAAM Chinese Dance Theater offers award-winning summer camp programs, customizable workshops and residencies, and interactive educational programs. We are proud to have been named “Best Summer Camp” in the recent past. CAAM CDT also performs year-round at various festivals and events. We are available for private bookings.
Chinese dance draws from more than 56 distinct ethnic groups, traditional Chinese opera, martial arts and ballet. While challenging to master, Chinese dance is also great fun! Think of it as ballet, modern dance, rhythmic gymnastics, martial arts, acrobatics, and more, all rolled into one. The costumes are usually very colorful, and many dances use props, such as fans, swords, ribbons, long sleeves, umbrellas, and hats. There are two broad categories of Chinese dance: ethnic/folk dance and classical/traditional dance. CAAM Chinese Dance Theater teaches both.
CAAM Chinese Dance Theater is dedicated to preserving, celebrating, and sharing Chinese cultural
heritage and enriching the cultural life of all Minnesotans through the universal language of dance.
In this spirit, CAAM CDT is pleased to offer free and low-cost performances throughout the year.
In order to receive the most up-to-date information about upcoming performances and events, please like us on Facebook by clicking https://www.facebook.com/CDTCAAM/
With tuition levels far below the actual cost, donations are needed to help pay for professional staff, studio space, and other operational expenses. Learn more about supporting CAAM Chinese Dance Theater here.