Artist in Residence in Composition, Film Scoring; School of Music
Steve Dancz began his professional career at the age of fifteen and by his twenty-first birthday was performing extensively in Europe, the Soviet Union, Japan, The People's Republic of China, Africa and South America. From the beginning of his career, he has worked on both the creative and business sides of the entertainment industry. His international career began as a musical director for Royal Viking Line, a position that included performance, arranging, conducting, managing personnel and consulting work on creative and management issues.
As a performer, Steve is a recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts grant, and has performed and/or recorded with many notable artists (including The Chieftains, Eddie Harris, Martin Taylor, Joe Lovano, Kevin Mahogany, Bill Cosby, Dizzy Gillespie, Rufus Reid, John Patitucci and Clark Terry) and has performed at the Montreux Jazz Festival (Switzerland), the Vienne Jazz Festival (France), The Brussels Conservatory of Music (Belgium), Tocar la Vida (Argentina), and the first World Festival of Sacred Music (India) at the request of His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama.
Dancz worked as a record producer and A and R director during the early years he was based in Los Angeles. He produced and performed on sessions in LA and London, promoted his artist roster to Radio France in Paris and coordinated record label operations with EMI, the company's European distributor. As A&R Director, Dancz handled selection and coordination of new material, developed a stable of in-house writers and producers and negotiated publishing deals for new album releases. He then turned his attention to film and TV scoring, providing original music for many film studios and broadcast media outlets including Columbia Pictures, CBS, HBO, Paramount Pictures, TBS, the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum, Discovery Networks, PBS, NPR and the Super Bowl. He has composed and conducted orchestral scores for television ("Designing Women") and motion pictures ("Grim Prairie Tales" starring James Earl Jones), and has composed for multiple national campaigns for JWT and ChiatDay LA.
As a result of a competitive audition, Steve was chosen to study film scoring with master composer Earl Hagen ("Andy of Mayberry," "I Spy," "Mod Squad"). Dancz has since composed and produced numerous original scores for National Geographic Films, many of which have aired as Specials and internationally as part of the National Geographic "Explorer" television series. His work with The Geographic resulted in the PBS Special: "Inside Mecca," a project nominated by the Society for Emmy consideration for its original score. A variety of projects including: "The Raising of the Hunley," "The Filmmakers," "Africa's Dinosaur Giants" and "Great White Deep Trouble" are available on DVD from the National Geographic Society. Dancz scored the BBC film "Superswarms" for broadcast on the Discovery Channel and his score and on-screen performance for "SACRED SITES OF THE DALAI LAMAS" is currently being viewed around the world. Dancz speaks regularly at colleges and universities in conjunction with screenings of the film, discussing his pilgrimage to Tibet, the filmmaking and post-production process, and the art and craft of film scoring. His most visible commission was creating the original score for the film"Tribute to the Declaration of Independence," seen worldwide by a record-setting 165 million viewers as part of the Super Bowl XLV broadcast.
Mr. Dancz spent two decades as director of the Jazz Studies Program at the University of Georgia's Hodgson School of Music. As a result of his experience in the music and entertainment industry Dancz co-founded UGA's interdisciplinary Music Business Program with the Terry College of Business. He later joined SAE as Director of their Atlanta campus before returning to his work full-time as a composer, performer, conductor, producer and educator. Dancz developed and currently directs the Hodgson School of Music's Jazz Study Abroad Program, an individualized course of study for the contemporary musician based in Alessandria, Italy. He currently teaches two courses for the KSU School of Music, Scoring for Media and Music Entrepreneurship.