Mary Fogarty

Mary Fogarty

BA Hons (UWO), MA (Brock), PhD (University of Edinburgh)

Associate Professor
Department of Dance

I’m an Associate Professor of Dance. My broad research focus is popular culture including: dance, music, film and other art practices.

I teach a range of undergraduate and graduate courses in the Dance Department at York University, specializing in the dance education stream.

A list of my publications and performances is available on my personal website:

<!–Mary Fogarty is a dance scholar and cultural sociologist with degrees in music, popular culture, and film studies. She is currently collaborating on a book project with co-author, Ken Swift, a second-generation b-boy from New York City. She is also co-editing The Oxford Handbook of Hip-Hop Dance Studies with Imani Kai Johnson.

Recent publications include co-editing Movies, Moves and Music: The Sonic World of Dance Films with Mark Evans (2016), and book chapters in The Routledge Reader on the Sociology of Music (Shepherd and Devine 2015), The Oxford Handbook of Dance and the Popular Screen (Blanco Borelli 2014) and Ageing and Youth Cultures: Music, Style and Identity (Hodkinson and Bennett 2012).

Previous collaborations include a neuroscience case study about imagining dancing to music across various dance styles with Professor Joseph DeSouza, Michael Olshansky and Rachel Bar for Neurocase (2014) and a sociological case study with co-authors Jonathan Osborn and Deanne Kearney about the “multiple legitimacies” of Tentacle Tribe, a dance company that mixes contemporary, hip hop and funk dance styles (Guerra and Moreira 2015). Prof. Mary Fogarty was an invited Visiting Scholar at New York University’s Hip Hop Education Centre (2013-2015).

Fogarty is part of KeepRockinYou, an artist-based collective that organizes educational classes and events including the Toronto B-Girl Movement, a platform devoted to mentoring young women in hip hop culture (

Dr. Fogarty is a sought after public speaker and has been invited to the Schomburg Centre in Harlem; New York University; Arizona State University; Griffith University, Australia (keynote speaker for Creative Communities II); University of Exeter; House of Paint (Ottawa hip hop event); Markham Theatre; Behavior Block Party & Pow Wow; Harbourfront Centre; Parkdale Library; Brock University; as well as an invited dance workshop leader for music therapists (Nordoff Robbins Centre), for dancers and choreographers (Alexandra Seutin’s ADiaspora Collective), for youth and for prisoners.

She performed in Open Art Surgery at the Harbourfront Centre (March 2014) in collaboration with Jonzi D and Allen Kaeja and in 2007 at Breakin’ Convention, an international hip hop dance theatre showcase, at Edinburgh Festival Theatre in Scotland.

Professor Fogarty has been the recipient of several awards including an Academic Innovation Fund, SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship, ORSAS (University of Edinburgh) and Canada Graduate Scholarship. She has served on committees for Pulse Ontario Youth Dance Conference, Manifesto Festival Dance Council, IASPM-UK, IMHSD, and CORD.

She is a founding member of the UK-based research collective about popular dance studies, PoP Moves and regularly organizes events for graduate students interested in the area of popular dance studies.

Mary is currently supervising a variety of graduate student projects including:

  • Nicole Marrello (dance competitions)
  • Eve Robertson (popular dance and digital media)
  • Sean Palmer-Robertson (breaking and rap battles)
  • Catherine Limbertie (dance festivals)
  • Serouj Aprahamian (hip hop history)
  • Ian Fitzgerald (romantic comedies and genre analysis)

From 2009 to 2011, Dr. Fogarty was a lecturer in Dance at the University of East London, England.


Peer Reviewed Publications


Fogarty, M. (2016). Spontaneous Lux: Freestyling in Dance and Music. Music and Arts in Action, Special issue on Flirting with Uncertainty: Improvisation in Performance. Ed. Jesse Stewart. 5. 1. Video documentary. 60 minutes.

Fogarty, M. (2016). “From Beat Street to Step Up 3D: The Sound of Street Dance Films.” Movies, Moves and Music: The Sonic World of Dance Films. Eds. Mary Fogarty and Mark Evans. Sheffield: Equinox.

Fogarty, M. (2015). “The Body and Dance.” The Routledge Reader on the Sociology of Music. Eds. John Shepherd and Kyle Devine. London: Routledge. 245-254.

Fogarty, M. (2015) with co-authors Jonathon Osborn and Deanne Kearney. “Camouflaged Identities: The Multiple Legitimacies of Tentacle Tribe.” Keep It Simple! Make it Fast! An Approach to Underground Music Scenes, Vol. 1, edited by Paula Guerra and Tania Moreira. Porto: University of Porto. 535-545.

Fogarty, M. (2014). “Gene Kelly: The Original, Updated” in Melissa Blanco Borelli (ed) The Oxford Handbook of Dance and the Popular Screen. New York: Oxford University Press.

Fogarty, M. (2014) with co-authors Michael Olshansky, Rachel Bar, and Joseph DeSouza. “Supplementary motor area and primary auditory cortex activation in an expert break-dancer during visualized dance to music.” Neurocase: The Neural Basis of Cognition: 1-11.

Fogarty, M. (2012). “Breaking expectations: Imagined affinities in mediated dance cultures.” In Andy Bennett and Brady Robards (eds), Mediated Youth Cultures, a special issue of Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies. London: Routledge.

Fogarty, M. (2012). “Each One Teach One: B-boying and Ageing.” In Andy Bennett and Paul Hodkinson (eds), Ageing and Youth Cultures: Music, Style and Identity. Oxford: Berg.

Fogarty, M. (2011). “A Manifesto for the Study of Popular Dance.” In Danielle Robinson (ed), Dancing the Popular, a special issue of Conversations across the Field of Dance Studies. Autumn/Winter 2010.

Fogarty, M. (2011). “Dance to the Drummer’s Beat: Competing Tastes in International B-Boy/B-Girl Culture.” University of Edinburgh: PhD dissertation. Available online:

Fogarty, M. (2010). “Preserving aesthetics while getting paid: Careers for hip hop dancers today.” In Shelley D. Brunt and Kirsten Zemke (eds), What’s it worth? ‘Value’ and Popular Music: Selected Papers from the 2009 IASPM Australia/New Zealand Conference. Dunedin, N.A.: International Association for the Study of Popular Music, p. 30-33.


Honours and Awards

Co-investigator for Keep Rockin’ You, Toronto B-Girl Movement as lead facilitator/lecturer. Grants and funds include: Ontario Trililium Foundation’s Youth Opportunity fund with ArtStart (2014), ArtReach grant for summer TB-GM program (2014), Manifesto Floor Award Community Contribution (2013), ArtReach Pitch contest (2013), OAC Grant Dance Initiative (2013), TB-GM program in partnership with City of Toronto Grant Innovation, Opportunities and Prosperity Program (2013).

Academic Innovation Fund, York University, 2013-2014.