Alumni Spotlight: Demetrius Burns

Contemporary dance alumnus Demetrius Burns (B.F.A. '16) shares how the Conservatory inspired and shaped him as an artist.

Growing up in Boston, my family encouraged me to play football and basketball, but I never felt at home on a sports team. I was introduced to dance in the third grade, when I saw an Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater performance. That’s when I finally found the world in which I truly belonged.

I experienced my first Boston Conservatory dance performance while I was applying to colleges. The diversity of the works presented was so captivating, I knew I wanted to be one of the students on that stage.

Progress defines my experience at the Conservatory. Every class pushed me intellectually and physically. I saw my body transform and my movement improve. I had the opportunity to work with amazing choreographers, including Ebony Williams and Uri Sands. These experiences were an enormous source of artistic growth and inspiration as I moved toward the next step in my career.

The Conservatory inspired me to want to make a difference in the lives of others and to reach diverse audiences by championing new works. I also want to inspire other dancers by working for one of my favorite dance companies—or by creating my own.

Dance isn’t just a way to create new ideas—it connects people. I strongly believe that we can build community and make the world a better place through movement, energy, and passion. Boston Conservatory gave me the tools to make my dreams a reality.