All photos in this album were taken by benjamin allen mielke as both a learning opportunity and a service to the University of Utah Department of Modern Dance and its students.  I have always been disappointed that students can go through an entire degree program and not have suitable images of themselves dancing or of their own work.  I decided upon arrival that I would purchase a DSLR and teach myself the art of dance photography by attending dress rehearsals and tech rehearsals.  I'd like to thank the University of Utah Department of Modern Dance (faculty, staff, and students) for allowing me this opportunity.  I'd also like to apologize to the choreographers and performers of the first few concerts I shot - yikes.  That's all I'll say.  I did my best.

I'd like to take a special moment to thank Sean Derrick, who was my supervisor at the US Census Bureau office in Edwardsville, IL.  He is also a concert photographer and, after I sent him a series of panicky texts saying "my pictures are so dark you can't see anything!  Help!" he was kind enough to tell me which settings to change, and how to get started.  Without his help, my learning curve would have been much, much steeper.

Going forward, I will always, if I am able, provide digital images for my future students at no cost to them.

This gallery contains a selection of those images (chosen by me) that I feel "came out well."  The only editing I have done to them is the act of "cropping."  

Any student in the Department of Modern Dance may use these photos for personal use without copyright restrictions from me - just please remember to cite me as the photographer along with the choreographer.

For Sidra Bell's work anti-systems, Sidra has requested that you additionally cite the complete information I have cited on that page.

My goal is 

1) Complete sorting the 75,000 or so images I have taken (about 150 GB)

2) Separate what I consider to be my favorites, or the "Best Of"

3) Make the "Best Of" available here for all to enjoy.  I also plan to send an external hard drive to the Department of Modern Dance containing all these images.  This hard drive will most likely be kept in the A/V Lab.

4) Make every photo I took available to each choreographer.  This will include images that I consider "meh" or sometimes just darned awful.  (I'm looking at you, "first time I tried to take pictures with my new camera" images.  You can barely see a thing...)  This way, perhaps an image that I personally feel might not be good enough can be "manipulated" by the original owner of the choreography to suit their purposes.

These will be given out through DropBox.  If you are a choreographer, and you would like particular images, please contact me through my Contact page with your email address.  I will then send you an invitation to a shared folder.  I will keep the photos there for one week, or until you have downloaded all images and you politely let me know you have done so, whichever is shorter.