Contemporary dance tends to utilize both the strong and controlled legwork of ballet and modern dance’s stress on the torso, and also employs contact-release, floor work, fall and recovery, and improvisation characteristic of modern dance. Unpredictable changes in rhythm, speed, and direction are often used. It sometimes also incorporates elements of non-western dance cultures such as elements from African dance including bent knees, or movements from the Japanese contemporary dance Butoh.
Dancers can begin contemporary starting in Grade 4 Ballet. Dancers must take a ballet class to be enrolled in contemporary.