Dance and Clarissa Essay

Dance and Clarissa Essay.

In the short story “Dancer” written by Vickie Sears, depicts a sense of loss identity,which is found later in the story. The narrator who is the foster mother of Clarissa is telling her story. Clarissa is a five year old aboriginal foster girl from a tribe called Assiniboin. Clarissa is angry,scared and doesn’t trust anyone. Every year the family goes to a pow-wow to celebrate the beginning of the new school year. Clarissa has never been nor seen the great spiritual celebration of a pow-wow.

At first,Clarissa paid no attention and did not care to be there until she seen an old women by the name of Molly Graybull. Molly danced wonderfully that mesmerized Clarissa. After that night,something woke Clarissa’s spirit. She slowly improves her character and starts to lose her anti-social behavior. Clarissa liked the sound of the drumming and really wanted to learn how to dance.

Dancing made Clarissa feel like she found her roots and belongs in the pow-wow circle.

he becomes free of anger and discontent while she dances. In conclusion, the writer shows us that Clarissa has found her inner piece, she gains a sense of community and now can unveil hidden talents that she never knew she possessed. This little girl was able to capture the spirit of dance through the Elder Molly Graybull and radiates with pride when she herself dances, a strong sense of peace comes over her as she finally gains her true identity as an Assiniboin Native.

Dance and Clarissa Essay

Analysis of Dance Essay

Analysis of Dance Essay.

The type of dance I attended was a mix of ballet and modern. This involved group performances as well as individual performances. For the purpose of this paper I will narrow my observations to an individual performance of both ballet and modern and a group performance of both. Dance has the ability to draw it’s viewer in, by captivating the audience with the amount of grace, coordination and talent it’s dancers display. The lines a dancer created with their body is nothing short of amazing.

Almost every type of person could appreciate something about dance.

One of the first dances of the night was a ballet done, by a 9 year old girl. As she entered the dance area, it became very silent in the auditorium. You could almost hear a needle drop. Her costume was simple, dark in color, not shinny, as if not to distract the audience from her performance. Her white tights provided a focal point drawing the audience to watching the delicate moves she was executing with her legs.

She started in first position quickly transitioning to 3rd and before you knew it she was spinning around on only one foot, pointing her toe towards the audience.

She had a brief moment where it appeared that she fell out of pose, but immediately pulled herself back together, executing the next pose with perfection. Her face remained unchanged throughout the entire performance. She demonstrated perfect C shaped arms as she held them in the air bringing all her weight from her heels to the tips of her toes. This performance was very impressive for such a young girl. What I sometimes miss it facial expressions, but I suppose by the absence of expression the girl is allowing your mind to go wherever the music takes you.

The next performance came from a 15 year old girl and best fit the description of modern dance. Her costume was bright, shinny, and created the illusion of movement. Many of the movements executed by this performer involved being on the floor, or bending over. Her arm movements were not as precise. It was as if a choreographer told her she could place her arms however she wished, in stark contrast to the ballet dance that required very precise movements. This dance appeared much slower. I did not enjoy this dance as much as I felt the bold costume and music distracted the viewers from the talent behind the dancer.

She too was expressionless when she danced. The way the stage lights reflected off her costume created a glowing effect on the dancer. The group ballet was absolutely beautiful. Some of the dancers started as if they were asleep or dead, all bent over, while other dancers began in the upright position. As the dancers began to move across the stage, the dancers in the downward position began to arise. It created the illusion that the dancers were giving life to an otherwise lifeless creature. They all began dancing in unison across the stage, with pose and grace, up on their toes.

They were always careful to have the correct position with their arms and legs, and toes pointed. They made this type of dancing look effortless, while executing it with such precision. No one fell out of pose during this dance, everyone knew their place and performed with great precision. As the dance ended they all went into a downward pose, creating the illusion that they were all lifeless again. What a brilliant analogy, this dance presented. Many things around us are lifeless, dull and boring, it is the people who occupy the space that gives it life and meaning.

Just like dance gives life and many to those who watch it or perform it. The last dance was the group modern dance. This was my least favorite. I would almost say that it appeared sloppy and ill choreographed. At times I wondered if the girls were supposed to be doing the same movements and some were behind or if it was meant to look like a ripple effect. It did not look like either to me. Through watching these dances it became very obvious to me that I prefer ballet to modern dance. I was uncertain of the reason until the lady seated behind me said,” I loved their modern group dance”.

I thought I miss heard her, but yes that was what she said. She even went on to say that they had won a competition doing that very dance. It was at that point I realized dance is for everyone. While I prefer the more precise movements, other people can enjoy the chaos of modern dance. I tend to be a perfectionist and I had nothing to gage the movements of the modern dance on. But I loved the ballet where you could tell when perfect pose was achieved. So I do believe a dance recital like this should appeal to all types of people, offering a great variety.

Analysis of Dance Essay

Holidays in Kazakhstan Essay

Holidays in Kazakhstan Essay.

The aim of my article is to introduce foreign tourists with our national holidays. That is why, I decided to present May events, which will happen in the nearest future. At the beginning of May we are going to celebrate the 1st of May. This day is included two festive occasions. The first is Day of Solidarity of workers. This event is also celebrated more than in 142 countries around the World. And the second occasion is the Day of Unity of people.

Usually people gather in public places and organize the concert with traditional songs, dances and you have the chance to taste national dishes of all ethnic groups living in Kazakhstan. At night above city’s sky you can behold hundreds lanterns. People set on fire, make a wish and let them fly. It is a beautiful end of event.

Victory Day takes place on the 9th of May. It is a legendary day, when all generations wait for this date to congratulate people, who gave us the Peace in 1945.

Unfotubately, Veterans of war we can count on fingers of one hand. We show our respect and gratitude to these people for our saved lives. All day street festivals are held all around the city. In the end of this occasion people come to the main square, where is given a wonderful salute at 10 p.m. On the 25th of May it became a tradition to open all fountains in the city. Students after their solemnity at school come in places with fountain. Singing songs, dancing, telling poems we can observe there. So, this is the list of holidays that we will celebrate in the near future. Dear foreigner, join to us in our street festivals!

Holidays in Kazakhstan Essay

Tap Dance in America Essay

Tap Dance in America Essay.

According to Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia, “ tap dance [is a] style of American theatrical dance, distinguished by percussive footwork, [which] marks out precise rhythmic patterns on the floor.” Also, “Tap is an exciting form of dance in which dancers wear special shoes equipped with metal taps. Tap dancers use their feet like drums to create rhythmic patterns and timely beats,” Treva Bedinghaus, graduated from Holli Barron’s School of Performing Arts and The Ballet Academy, writes in Tap for beginner, “The term “tap dancing” is derived from the tapping sound produced when the small metal plates on the dancer’s shoes touch a hard floor or surface.

” In 125 Years of Tap, Jane Goldberg, a dancer-writer who is considered as one of the most prolific voices in the filed of tap dancing, writes: “What distinguishes tap [dancing] from most other dance forms is that it is two arts in one: music and dance. The dancers are ‘playing their feet’ and moving at the same time.

” In another article – The Art of Tap Dancing, Amy Brinkman-Sustache, artistic director of Dance-works on Tap (DOT), describes, “A step is a word.

You put steps together to make a sentence. Questions are raised and answered through rhythm. It’s like listening to a conversation.” Literally, tap is America’s unique contribution to dance. “Tap history is mostly an oral tradition,” Kikelly, performer/scholars from Virginia Tech, says, “and a single definitive history has not yet been written.” Still, Kikelly and many other people like her are working hard to reveal the truth about how this art form developed. Tap is believed the double of diversity. “The history of tap has been a story of survival, revival, renaissance and innovation,” Jane Goldberg indicates in her 125 Years of Tap article, “the controversial roots of which arc still being debated, though the primary sources are usually considered to be Irish and African-American.” According to Constance Valis Hill, Ph.D. in Performance Studies from New York University, “tap dance is an indigenous American dance genre that evolved over a period of some three hundred years. Initially a fusion of British and West African musical and step-dance traditions in America, tap emerged in the southern United States in the 1700s.

The Irish jig (a musical and dance form) and West African gioube (sacred and secular stepping dances) mutated into the American jig and juba. These in turn became juxtaposed and fused into a form of dancing called “jigging” which, in the 1800s, was taken up by white and black minstrel-show dancers who developed tap into a popular nineteenth-century stage entertainment.” Furthermore, “early styles of tapping utilized hard-soled shoes, clogs, or hobnailed boots. It was not until the early decades of the twentieth century that metal plates (or taps) appeared on shoes of dancers on the Broadway musical stage,” Hill summarizes, “in the late twentieth century, tap dance evolved into a concertized performance on the musical and concert hall stage. Its absorption of Latin American and Afro- Caribbean rhythms in the forties has furthered its rhythmic complexity. In the eighties and nineties, tap’s absorption of hip-hop rhythms has attracted a fierce and multi-ethnic new breed of male and female dancers who continue to challenge and evolve the dance form, making tap the most cutting-edge dance expression in America today.”

Yet, according to, “no one really knows when the phrase ‘tap dance’ was first used – perhaps as early as 1900 – but it didn’t appeared in print until around 1928.” “Unlike ballet with its codification of formal technique, tap dance developed from people listening to and watching each other dance in the street, dance hall, or social club where steps were shared, stolen and reinvented. ‘Technique’ is transmitted visually, aurally, and corporeally, in a rhythmic exchange between dancers and musicians. Mimicry is necessary for the mastery of form,” Hill points out. Moreover, she continues indicating, “The dynamic and synergistic process of copying the other to invent something new is most important to tap’s development and has perpetuated its key features, such as the tap challenge. […] The oral and written histories of tap dance are replete with challenge dances, from jigging competitions on the plantation that were staged by white masters for their slaves, and challenge dances in the walk-around finale of the minstrel show, to showdowns in the street, displays of one-upsmanship in the social club, and juried buck-and wing-contests on the vaudeville stage.”

Indeed, Jane Goldberg also writes, “one documented fact is that many tap legends began performing any place they could — especially street corners — before the discipline Invaded vaudeville shows and, eventually, the silver screen. In a contest by the performers to outdo one another, tap kept evolving, transforming into an art form of self-expression as well as highly stylized production numbers.” For such a long time, tap was considered “a man’s game” or even “a largely black, male-dominated form.” People easily notice various famous male tap dancers in history like Bill “Bojangles” Robinson (1878-1949), John W. Bubbles (1902-1986), or Sammy Davis Jr. (1925-1990). Female dancers, in contrast, were not very honored in history books. Yet, Jane Golden presents, “a number of young white women got into the act starting in the mid-1970s. These women studied and often performed with their male mentors,” even though the fact Stacie Strong has noted in History, Herstory, OUR STORY article: “While male tap dancers acted as headliners, women tappers filled out the chorus lines.

Though many of their names have been lost, these women were incredibly versatile and talented. Headliners often did the same act week after week (or even year after year), but the chorus had to learn a new routine every few weeks, often working with props and in outlandish costumes, performing as many as four shows a day.” Professor Constance Valis Hill’s inclusive history is the first to also highlight the outstanding female dancers, she wrote in Tap Dance in America: A Very Short History, “In 1986, La Mama presented Sole Sisters an all woman, multi-generational tap dance show directed by Constance Valis Hill that brought together high-heeled steppers and low-heeled hoofers, the veteran grande dames of tap and younger prima taperinas.” Next, she indicates, “Soul Sisters was not the only production to open the door for the recognition of female jazz tap dancers. On the West Coast Lynn Dally, who founded the Jazz Tap Ensemble in 1979, combined her extensive experience in modern dance with jazz tap to organize a group of dancers that insisted on performing and interacting with a live jazz ensemble.

On the East Coast, singer, jazz and tap dancer Brenda Bufalino, formerly a partner of Honi Coles, founded the American Tap Orchestra, and set about experimenting with how to layer and orchestrate rhythmic groups of dancers on the concert stage.” “Today the type of tap that mostly closely resembles the style current during Robinson’s era is jazz or rhythm tap. These dancers concentrate on improvisation and choreography that incorporate the complicated rhythms of classic jazz music. Often they look crouched over, listening to their feet — and that’s exactly what they’re doing. While some rhythm tappers have begun choreographing for their upper bodies, the emphasis is still on the dancers hearing themselves. The mentors of today’s leading rhythm tappers have often been called ‘hoofers’,” writes Jane Goldberg.

In addition, The Basic Characteristics of Tap Dancing shows, “Tap dancers make frequent use of syncopation. Choreography typically starts on the eighth or first beatcount. Another aspect of tap dancing is improvisation. This can either be done with music and follow the beats provided or without musical accompaniment, otherwise known as acappella dancing.” This article also points out another major variations on tap dance, besides rhythm tap: “Early tappers like Fred Astaire provided a more ballroom look to tap dancing, while Gene Kelly used his extensive ballet training to make tap dancing incorporate all the parts of the ballet.

This style of tap led to what is today known as “Broadway style,” which is more mainstream in American culture.” Specially, the article give some examples of common tap steps and how professional tap dancers make their new steps: Common tap steps include the shuffle, shuffle ball change, flap, flap heel, cramp roll, buffalo, Maxi Ford, single and double pullbacks, wings, Cincinnati, the shim sham shimmy (also called the Lindy), Irish, Waltz Clog, the paddle and roll, the paradiddle, stomp, brushes, scuffs, and single and double toe punches, hot steps, heel clicks, single, double and triple time steps, riffs, over-the-tops, military time step, New Yorkers, and chugs. In advanced tap dancing, basic steps are often combined together to create new steps.

Timesteps are widely used in tap and can vary in different areas. These consist of a rhythm that is changed to make new timesteps by adding or removing steps. The images of tap dancer and their shoes has also changed, especially for female dancers: “Boundaries have shifted dramatically since the 1970s, when high-heeled tap shoes were reserved for Broadway-style tap and flat oxford-style shoes were associated with rhythm tap,” according to Darrah Carr – MFA from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Additionally, Carr notes that “Introductory high-heeled taps range from 1″ to 1½″ high, while more advanced heels can be up to 3″ high. […] Dancing in heels also forces you to hold your body more upright, which can change your stage presence. […] ‘Heels encourage you to incorporate your hips and your shoulders into your dancing and wearing heels makes you think about extending the line of your leg’.” In contrast, “many tap dancers find that nothing beats the comfort of flats,” Carr reveals, “Flat tap shoes are made in the same oxford style for women and men, and many dancers feel that the shoe looks best when paired with pants or jeans.

And flats have larger metal taps than heels, so the sound produced is a deeper, heavier bass tone. (The smaller metal taps on high-heeled shoes create sounds that are higher in tone.)” Another ideas showed by Carr are: “A dancer’s body placement in flat tap shoes is centered between the toes and heels. [And] certain steps, such as side shuffles and toe stands, are easier to execute in flats because your weight is more evenly distributed.” Still, “Whether you’re a heels lover or forever committed to flats, it’s important that you become comfortable with both shoe styles,” she advises. Indeed, according to Elena North-Kelly, “High heeled, low heeled, soft leather, hard leather, split soled, and full soled–all tap shoes are not created equal. Different styles of tap shoes facilitate different styles of tap dancing. When shopping for a shoe, you need to consider comfort, flexibility, aesthetic, shape, and, of course, sound.”

Also, North-Kelly quotes a statement from Lynn Schwab, who teaches tap at New York City’s Steps on Broadway, to help people with choosing tap shoes: “While part of a tap dancer’s sound is a product of technique, it also relates to the material of the shoe. For rhythm tapping, the best sound comes from a harder shoe with a wider heel.” Finally, North-Kelly says, “Dancers hoping for a career on Broadway, however, have a little more leeway, partly because most Broadway dancers use different tap shoes for performance, classes, and auditions.” Briefly, with a relatively brief but rich history, the tap tradition is growing bigger, better and broader every year. In fact, holding an enormous respect for the past, Jason Samuels Smith, the first tapper to win an Emmy award for choreography since Hermes Pan in 1958, used to say: “Tap culture is all about celebrating the past and accumulating its vocabulary over time.

If we don’t maintain our history, we lose what’s valuable about tap.” He is not the only person who thinks that way, Donna-Marie Peters – professor at Temple University, also express her ideas in Passing On: The Old Head/Younger Dancer Mentoring Relationship in the Cultural Shpere of Rhythm Tap: “Respect for the artistic tradition” of tap is the value that humbles even the most seasoned performers. This value demands subservience to the art that is seen as bigger than the individual and takes a lifetime to master. By honoring the art over the individual, the tap dancers become servants to the art, working to the best of their ability to execute it well. The long-term survival of this struggling art form is dependent on a cot munity of individuals with a sense of purpose, dedicated to keeping the art form alive and moving forward.

Works Cited
“TAP DANCE.” (n.d.): Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia. EBSCO. Web. 26 Oct. 2011. Bedinghaus, Treva. “Tap for Beginners.” n. pag. Web. 26 Oct 2011. <> Carr, Darrah. “Heels vs. Flats.” Dance Spirit 14.8 (2010): 98. MAS Ultra – School Edition. EBSCO. Web. 26 Oct. 2011. Hill, Constance. “Tap Dance in America: A Very Short History.” (2002): n. pag. Web 26 Oct 2011. <> Holmes, Vance. “All ABout Tap Dance.” n. pag. Web. 26 Oct 2011. <>. Goldberg, Jane. “125 Years of tap.” Dance Spirit 7.5 (2003): 34. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. Web. 26 Oct. 2011. North-Kelly, Elena. “Tap Shoes Meet These Dancing Feet.” Dance Magazine 79.3 (2005): 68. MAS Ultra – School Edition. EBSCO. Web. 26 Oct. 2011. Peters, Donna-Marie. “Passing On: The Old Head/Younger Dancer Mentoring Relationship in the Cultural Shpere of Rhythm Tap.” Western Journal of Black Studies 34.4 (2010): 438-436. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. Web. 26.Oct.2011. Schneider, John. “The Art of Tap Dancing.” n. pag. Web. 26 Oct 2011. <> Strong, Stacie. “History, Herstory, OUR STORY,” Dance Spirit 11.10 (2007): 62. MAS Ultra – School Edition. EBSCO. Web. 26 Oct 2011. “The basic characteristics of tap dancing.” Ballet Shoes n. pag. Web. 26 Oct 2011. <>.

Tap Dance in America Essay

George Balanchine Essay

George Balanchine Essay.

I chose to research on George Balanchine because he became known as the most influential ballet choreographer of the 20th century. He not only was the most influential ballet choreographer, but he worked with leading figures of American musical theatre two revues, fourteen musical comedies, four operettas, five Hollywood films, and a circus spectacle that are milestones of American popular culture. He was a very versatile choreographer and that’s what makes him very special to me. To be a versatile dance is always a plus.

Also, George Balanchine was very close with Stravinsky and Tchaikovsky who had absolutely fantastic music. Thirty-nine out of over four hundred ballets, George Balanchine used Stravinsky’s music. One of my favorite ballets is The Nutcracker, and it holds a very special place in my heart. I have danced in The Nutcracker for the past 8 years and it’s the one thing I look forward to every year. Unfortunately, now that I’m graduating this year, this Christmas was the last time I will be preforming in The Nutcracker for my dance studio.

Balanchine changed and shaped the style of ballet. When Balanchine was only ten years old he began to start making dances. “I taught this little ballet to eight boys in my class at school,” Balanchine recalled. Balanchine was born to be a choreographer. Balanchine formed his own company in 1933, Les Ballets.

He collaborated with such leading artistic figures as Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill (The Seven Deadly Sins), artist Pavel Tchelitchew, and composers Darius Milhaud and Henri Sauguet. Boston-born dance connoisseur Lincoln Kristein harbored a dream: He wanted to establish an American school of ballet that would equal — even rival — the established European schools, and he wanted to establish an American ballet company. Through Romola Nijinsky, whom Kirstein had assisted in her research for a biography of her husband, Kirstein met Balanchine and saw in him the means by which this dream could be realized, if only the choreographer could be persuaded to relocate to the United States. He moved back to the United States in 1934. The first product of the Balanchine-Kristein collaboration was the School of American Ballet, founded in 1934. The School remains in operation to this day, training students for the New York City Ballet and companies throughout the United States and the world.

In 1935, Kirstein and Balanchine set up a touring company of dancers from the school and called it the American Ballet. In 1946, Balanchine and Kirstein collaborated again to form Ballet Society, a company which introduced New York subscription-only audiences over the next two years to such new Balanchine works as The Four Temperaments (1946) and Stravinsky’s Renard (1947) and Orpheus (1948). Morton Baum, chairman of the City Center finance committee, saw Ballet Society during one of their subscription programs at City Center. Baum was so highly impressed, that he initiated negotiations that led to the company being invited to join the City Center municipal complex as the “New York City Ballet.” Balanchine’s talents at last had found a permanent home.

On October 11, 1948, the New York City Ballet was born, dancing a program consisting of Concerto Barocco, Orpheus and Symphony In C (a ballet which Balanchine had created for the Paris Opera Ballet under the title Le Palais de Cristal the previous year). From that time until his death, Balanchine served as artistic director for the New York City Ballet, choreographing the majority of the productions the company has introduced since its inception. Today, New York City Ballet is one of the largest and most highly esteemed classical ballet companies in the world, with a permanent repertory of more than 150 works, many of which are considered dance masterpieces. There are approximately 90 dancers in the Company, making it the largest dance organization in the country.

Balanchine is often referred to as the father of neoclassical ballet. What he did was put aside the story ballets and traditional ballet music in favor of other types of music that ballet was not normally danced to like Concerto Barocco for example. He and Lincoln wanted to make a truly modern and American form of ballet. Balanchine style is often characteristically flirty and fast which is one reason why the pieces were so short. They really are fast. He had pirouettes in lounge positions (not fifth) with crossed arms in front, as well as a characteristic “broken wrist” throughout all of his style. Arabesques are open with the hip facing the audience to give an illusion of a higher line. Balanchine himself has written: “We must first realize that dancing is an absolutely independent art, not merely a secondary accompanying one. I believe that it is one of the great arts. The important thing in ballet is the movement itself, as it is sound which is important in a symphony.

A ballet may contain a story, but the visual spectacle, not the story, is the essential element. The music of great musicians, it can be enjoyed and understood without any verbal introduction and the choreographer and the dancer must remember that they reach the audience through the eye and the audience, in its turn, must train itself to see what is performed upon the stage. It is the illusion created which convinces the audience, much as it is with the work of a magician. If the illusion fails, the ballet fails, no matter how well a program note tells the audience that it has succeeded” “Ask someone who’s danced Serenade and they’ll probably say it’s one of their favorite ballets to perform. Ask anyone who’s seen it and they’ll most likely recall sweeping ocean-blue skirts, glorious music, and the haunting final imagery of one woman held aloft in a backward arch like the regal masthead of a ship,” says Lisa Rinehart writer in Dance Magazine.

This neoclassical ballet for twenty women and six men has serious staying power. It is performed several dozen times a year by professional companies, university programs, and ballet schools all over the world. It is almost continually part of NYCB’s repertory. Balan­chine’s genius for theatrical imagery and lush, full movement pairs brilliantly with Tchaikovsky’s music and adds an entirely new dimension. “I think it was his breakthrough into the new, a glimpse of what was to come,” says former NYCB principal Maria Calegari. In the book Ballet 101, dance critic Robert Greskovic says, “Taking its poetic, dramatic color from its music, Serenade became, for the mid-20th century, the quintessential ‘ballet of mood,’ reliving the status and impact that Fokine’s Les Sylphides had at the turn of the century.”

In 1970 U.S. News & World Report attempted to summarize Balanchine’s achievements in the following words, “The greatest choreographer of our time, George Balanchine, is responsible for the successful fusion of modern concepts with older ideas of classical ballet. Balanchine received his training in Imperial Russia before coming to America in 1933. Here, the free-flowing U.S. dance forms stimulated him to develop new techniques in dance design and presentation which have altered the thinking of the world of dance. Often working with modern music, and the simplest of themes, he has created ballets that are celebrated for their imagination and originality. His company, the New York City Ballet, is the leading dance group of the United States and one of the greatest companies in the world.

An essential part of the success of Balanchine’s group has been the training of his dancers, which he has supervised since the founding of his School of American Ballet in 1934. Balanchine chose to shape talent locally, and he has said that the basic structure of the American dancer was responsible for inspiring some of the striking lines of his composition. Balanchine is not only gifted in creating entirely new productions — his choreography for classical works has been equally — fresh and inventive. He has made American dance the most advanced and richest in choreographic development in the world today.” Balanchine had a reputation throughout the dance world for the calm and collected way in which he worked with his dancers and colleagues. He changed and influenced the performing arts world in many ways. The Balanchine style will never be forgotten and neither will he.

Works Cited
“George Balanchine.” New York City Ballet. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2013. <>. The George Balanchine Foundation. “Popular Balanchine.” Foundation Projects. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2013. Innovator of American Ballet. N.p.: n.p., n.d. eLibrary. Web. 10 Jan. 2013. <>. Rinehart, Lisa. “Secrets of Serenade.” Dance Magazine: n. pag. Print. West, Martha Ullman. Dance Teacher. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Print.

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George Balanchine Essay

The History of Jazz Dance Essay

The History of Jazz Dance Essay.

Jazz dance dates all the way back to 5,000 – 9,000 years ago. Although many people believe that jazz dance originated from United States, it actually came from early African cultures. In Africa, natives danced to celebrate cycles of life such as birth, puberty, marriage, and death. Child, adults, and the elderly depended on jazz dance to express their culture and beliefs. People from Africa who were later sold into the slave trade around the late 1800’s to mid 1900’s brought the dance with them to the Southern plantations in which they now lived on.

The dance took on more of a European style over time. The only place where jazz danced stayed in its original African form was Congo Square in New Orleans. Slaves were allowed to dance while being supervised by French and Spanish Catholics. The Catholics believed that by letting the slaves dance, they could monitor them to make sure they weren’t planning escapes or practicing voodoo rituals. After seeing the slaves dance, whites began to paint their faces black and began copying their styles.

The very first dance to imitate slave dancers was by Thomas Rice in 1828. It was called “Jump Jim Crow. ” It copied the movement of a slave who had been crippled. This became the basis for the era of American entertainment founded on stereotyping slave dancers. The movement quickly spread to the audience and public, and the result was that dances like the Charleston, Jitterbug, Boogie Woogie and Swing began to develop.

The History of Jazz Dance Essay

Dance Observation Essay

Dance Observation Essay.

For my observation paper I will be writing about the Wendell Tyler Cooper performance Disembodied on February 11, 2011. What was interesting was that the entire performance he danced alone on stage and was still able to make the show dynamic and continuous. The performance incorporated dance, music and video; it also had a spiritual sense to it which reminded me of a passage in Black Dance From 1619 to Today by Lynne Emery (Chapter 1, page 2) referring to “religious dance forms”.

Wendell Cooper also included other aspects with video, music, and speaking; it seemed to me as if he was reading poetry or some type of spoken word.

The movement was very grounded and earthy, there were no restrictions and he was barely upright without a curve in the spine. Some more characteristics that are similar to the movement mentioned before is the African characteristics by Magaretta Bobo Goins which include: bent knees, barefoot, generally movement begins in torso and travels outward, rhythms are syncopated, singing and dancing simultaneously.

Later I learned from danceblogger. com description of the performance Disembodied that Wendell Cooper “utilized his knowledge of energy-bodywork and meditation to create a synaesthetic installation/performance environment”, which now I understand why I kept getting a sense of spirituality or religion in some of his movement. The breathing and speaking or spoken word and repetitive movement was very reminiscent of a statement in a passage in To Make Our World Anew: A History of African Americans by Colin A.

Palmer, “Religious ideas determined the timing of important occasions…the nature of art and dance, and a thousand other aspects. ” Due to the nature of meditation that Wendell Cooper studied he was able to incorporate that ideal into his choreography and it can read as religious, spiritual, or simply complicated choreography and is very relatable to the audience. The music that Wendell Cooper chose was unique in that it was not too over powering of the choreography but it was strong enough to convey a message and to keep the audiences attention.

In Robert Ferris Thompson’s 10 Canons of Fine Form the ideal of the get down quality, looking smart, and coolness were portrayed in the work. The choreography stayed grounded and he had a lot of movement done on the floor that was reminiscent of “B-Boying” style of dance. Wendell Cooper’s costume with the white draped over him incorporated the looking smart idea because white gives a clean look and is also used in religious and spiritual ceremonies.

The coolness came about when he was dancing and he had on a suit and tie with a hat on; the choreography seemed to only move horizontally in space, his movement was very dynamic, and he had some repetition. This section of the work caught my attention the most and I would be best described by Brenda Dixon Gottschild who wrote Digging the Africanist Presence in American Performance: Dance and Other Contexts; she stated that the “Africanist aesthetic values repetition, or more precisely, repetition-as-intensification. (Page 8)

Wendell Cooper had a lot of repetition through out his choreography but each repetitive motion seemed different although it was the same choreography. Brenda Dixon Gottschild also stated that “Africanist dance idioms show a democratic equality of body parts. The spine is just one of many possible movement centers; it rarely remains static” (page 8) and this is reference to his choreography overall. The performance was a learning experience because I have not seen movement like Wendell Cooper’s so I was able to admire it for what it was and to be inspired.

Dance Observation Essay

Bhangra Essay

Bhangra Essay.

Bhaṅgṛā (Punjabi: ਭੰਗੜਾ (Gurmukhi), بھنگڑا (Shahmukhi), भांगड़ा (Devanagari); pronounced [pə̀ŋɡɽaː]) is a form of dance and music that originated in the Punjab region.[1] Bhangra dance began as a folk dance conducted by Punjabi Sikh farmers(Jatts) to celebrate the coming of the harvest season. The specific moves of Bhangra reflect the manner in which villagers farmed their land. This dance art further became synthesized after the partition of India, when refugees from different parts of the Punjab shared their folk dances with individuals who resided in the regions they settled in.

This hybrid dance became Bhangra. The folk dance has been popularised in the western world by Punjabi Sikhs[2] and is seen in the West as an expression of South Asian culture as a whole.[3] Today, Bhangra dance survives in different forms and styles all over the globe – including pop music, film soundtracks, collegiate competitions and even talent shows.

Bhangra dance is based on a Punjabi folk dhol beat called ‘bhangra’ singing and the beat of the dhol drum, a single-stringed instrument called the iktar (ektara), the tumbi and the chimta.

Bhangra music however, is a form of music that originated in 1980s in Britain. The accompanying songs are small couplets written in the Punjabi language called bolis. They relate to current issues faced by the singers and (dil di gal) what they truly want to say. In Punjabi folk music, the dhol’s smaller cousin, the dholki, was nearly always used to provide the main beat.

Nowadays the dhol is used more frequently in folk music however in bhangra dholki is still preferred, with and without the dholki. Additional percussion, including tabla, is less frequently used in bhangra as a solo instrument but is sometimes used to accompany the dhol and dholki. The dholki drum patterns in Bhangra music bear an intimate similarity to the rhythms in Reggae music.

This rhythm serves as a common thread which allows for easy commingling between Punjabi folk and Reggae as demonstrated by such artists as the UK’s Apache Indian.[4][5] In the late 1960s and 1970s, several Punjabi Sikh bands from the United Kingdom set the stage for Bhangra to become a form of music instead of being just a dance. The success of many Punjabi artists based in the United Kingdom, created a fanbase, inspired new artists, and found large amounts of support in both East and West Punjab. These artists, some of whom are still active today, include, Heera Group, Alaap, A.S. Kang and Apna Sangeet.

Bhangra has developed as a combination of dances from different parts of the Punjab region. The term “Bhangra” now refers to several kinds of dances and arts, including Jhumar, Luddi, Giddha, Julli, Daankara, Dhamal, Saami, Kikli, and Gatka. * Jhumar, originally from Sandalbar, Punjab, comprises an important part of Punjab folk heritage. It is a graceful dance, based on a specific Jhumar rhythm. Dancers circle around a drum player while singing a soft chorus. * A person performing the Luddi dance places one hand behind his head and the other in front of his face, while swaying his head and arms. He typically wears a plain loose shirt and sways in a snake-like manner. Like a Jhumar dancer, the Luddi dancer moves around a dhol player.

* Women have a different and much milder dance called Giddha. The dancers enact verses called bolis, representing a wide variety of subjects — everything from arguments with a sister-in-law to political affairs. The rhythm of the dance depends on the drums and the handclaps of the dancers. * Daankara is a dance of celebration, typically performed at weddings. Two men, each holding colorful staves, dance around each other in a circle while tapping their sticks together in rhythm with the drums. * Dancers also form a circle while performing Dhamal. They also hold their arms high, shake their shoulders and heads, and yell and scream. Dhamal is a true folk-dance, representing the heart of Bhangra. * Women of the Sandalbar region traditionally are known for the Saami. The dancers dress in brightly colored kurtas and full flowing skirts called lehengas.

* Like Daankara, Kikli features pairs of dancers, this time women. The dancers cross their arms, hold each other’s hands, and whirl around singing folk songs. Occasionally four girls join hands to perform this dance. * Gatka is a Punjabi Sikh martial art in which people use swords, sticks, or daggers. Historians believe that the sixth Sikh guru started the art of Gatka after the martyrdom of fifth guru, Guru Arjan Dev. Wherever there is a large Punjabi Sikh population, there will be Gatka participants, often including small children and adults. These participants usually perform Gatka on special Punjabi holidays. In addition to these different dances, a Bhangra performance typically contains many energetic stunts. The most popular stunt is called the moor, or peacock, in which a dancer sits on someone’s shoulders, while another person hangs from his torso by his legs. Two-person towers, pyramids, and various spinning stunts are also popular.[16] Outfits

Traditional men wear a chaadra while doing Bhangra. A chaadra is a piece of cloth wrapped around the waist. Men also wear a kurta, which is a long Indian-style shirt. In addition, men wear pagadi (also known as turbans) to cover their heads. In modern times, men also wear turla, the fan attached to the pagadi. Colorful vests are worn above the kurta. Fumans (small balls attached to ropes) are worn on each arm. Women wear a traditional Punjabi dress known as a salwar kameez, long baggy pants tight at the ankle (salwar) and a long colorful shirt (kameez). Women also wear chunnis, colorful pieces of cloth wrapped around the neck.

These items are all very colorful and vibrant, representing the rich rural colors of Punjab.[17] Besides the above, the Bhangra dress has different parts that are listed below in detail: * Turla or Torla, which is a fan like adornment on the turban * Pag (turban, a sign of pride/honor in Punjab). This is tied differently than the traditional turban one sees Sikhs wearing in the street. This turban has to be tied before each show * Kurta – Similar to a silk shirt, with about 4 buttons, very loose with embroidered patterns. * Lungi or Chadar, A loose loincloth tied around the dancer’s waist, which is usually very decorated. * Jugi: A waistcoat, with no buttons.

* Rumāl: Small ‘scarves’ worn on the fingers. They look very elegant and are effective when the hands move during the course of bhangra performance. ..and you can see a photo of a bhangra dhol drummer, costumed and in full swing. According to Sanjay Sharma, in her article,[11] she explains/points out the fact that Bhangra represents Asians and is referred to today as Asian music which accounts for the vast existence of Asian wear and not to mention symbols as part of their traditional dress/costumes Instruments

Many different Punjabi instruments contribute to the sound of Bhangra. Although the most important instrument is the keyboard, Bhangra also features a variety of string and other drum instruments. The primary and most important instrument that defines Bhangra is the dhol. The dhol is a large, high-bass drum, played by beating it with two sticks – known as daggah (bass end) and tilli (treble end). The width of a dhol skin is about fifteen inches in general, and the dhol player holds his instrument with a strap around his neck. The string instruments include the guitar (both acoustic and electrical), bass, sitar, tumbi, violin and sarangi.

The snare, toms, dhad, dafli, dholki, and damru are the other drums. The tumbi, originally played by folk artists such as Lalchand Yamla Jatt and Kuldip Manak in true folk recordings and then famously mastered by chamkila, a famous Punjabi folk singer (not bhangra singer), is a high-tone, single-string instrument. It has only one string, however it is difficult to master. The sarangi is a multi-stringed instrument, somewhat similar to the violin and is played using meends. The sapera produces a beautiful, high-pitched stringy beat, while the supp and chimta add an extra, light sound to Bhangra music. Finally, the dhad, dafli, dholki, and damru are instruments that produce more drum beats, but with much less bass than the dhol drum.

Bhangra Essay

Dance Showdown Mechanics Essay

Dance Showdown Mechanics Essay.

1. The contest is open for all Pagbilawins only.

2. Each group must consist of 6 to 10 members only regardless of age and gender.

3. Each group can choose their own dance piece. The routine must not less than the minimum of five minutes nor exceed the maximum of seven minutes. The excess of one second shall be considered as an additional one minute, thus there will be a deduction of 5 points per minute. Timing of begins when the first audible sound starts and ends with the last audible sound.

4. Each group can register within the day of the contest and must show their IDs and/or birth certificates as proofs of residency.

5. Each group must show up 30 minutes before the competition starts. Failure to do so may mean forfeiture of their entry.

6. There will be a registration fee of Php20.00 per member of a group.

7. Criteria for Judging are as follows:

Choreography 30%

Musicality 20%

Preparedness and Execution 25%

Showmanship and Appearance 10%

Audience Impact 15 %

TOTAL 100%

8. Prizes are as follows:

1st – Php6000
2nd – Php4000
3rd – Php2000

9. The decision of the judges is final and irrevocable.

Criteria for Judging

1. Choreography 30%

2. Musicality 20%

3. Preparedness and Execution 25%

4. Showmanship and Appearance 10%

5. Audience Impact (see Ticket Sales) 15%

TOTAL 100%

1. Choreography (30%) – This refers to the broad selection of dance moves used by the group from the Hip Hop style, without repetition or pattern. Blockings should also be observed, thus the group must be aware of the spacing and full utilization of the stage. The originality and creativity of the steps used is an important aspect of this criterion.

2. Musicality (20%) – Timing between the steps and the music used is an important factor. In addition, the choice of music for the contemporary hip hop dance must be relevant to the steps and to the message of the song. Deductions will be made for timing errors.

3. Preparedness and Execution (25%) – Proper execution and mastery of the steps used by the group is a critical element in this criterion. Dance moves must be synchronized and/or unified.

4. Showmanship and Appearance (10%) – The group must establish a connection with the audience by expressing confidence by maintaining eye-contact and use of facial expressions. The group’s clothing/costume appeal must be neat, appropriate and safe for the competition.

5. Audience Impact (15%)- The group must connect through the audience and evoke them with expressions of laughter, excitement, joy or any sense emotion relative to the style presented.

Dance Showdown Mechanics Essay

History of Pole Dancing Essay

History of Pole Dancing Essay.

Pole dancing is a combination of dance and gymnastics that is an increasingly popular form of fitness and dance. Pole dancers use a vertical pole which is either static or spinning, and train in gyms or dedicated dance studios.

It’s no secret that pole dancing really started in the strip clubs. But it has evolved into so much more and pole dancing fitness enthusiasts and schools have been working tirelessly to change the perception to one of a legitimate dance style emphasising the acrobatics and strength.

Circus influences such as Chinese pole and other aerial arts have helped along the way, moving it away from the erotic environment. Competitions are usually non-sexual and are judged on tricks and transitions rather than sensuality.

Rather than just the gyrating and grinding people expect it to be, pole dancing requires an amazing amount of strength, flexibility and cardiovascular endurance, even a five minute routine is extremely tiring! Obviously in clubs, rather than actual tricks, there is a lot of floor-work and other things that are designed to arouse rather than amaze! Pole dancers use upper body and core strength are the most obvious requirements as there are a lot of climbs, spins and inverting the body weight – it often involves a lot of training to get anywhere near an advanced level.

Pole dancing as we see it today originated during the depression in America. The traveling entertainment and carnival troupes would go from town to town. In one of the side tents aside from the main show, girls would dance suggestively on a small stage in front of crowds of cheering men. Sound familiar? Pole dancing gradually moved into to bars in the 1950s as burlesque became more popular and then during the 1980s in North America, became pole dancing and the modern striptease. It was only a decade later that a dancer in Canada started teaching pole dancing for fitness to women who weren’t club dancers.

In Australia, the first pole dancing studio, Bobbi’s Pole Studio, opened in Sydney in 2004, closely followed by Pole Divas in Melbourne in 2004 and a national competition followed in 2005. Since then there have been dozens of pole dancing schools opening all over Australia and we boast some of the best pole dancers in the world, including multiple Miss Pole Dance World winner, Felix Cane.

We do know that there are different styles of pole dancing including Chinese pole, and Mallakhamb (an Indian sport), neither of which have an erotic component and are mainly performed by men, so obviously pole dancing in different forms has developed around the world over time. The Mallakhamb pole is wide, made of wood and has a wooden ball on the top of it. Chinese Pole is usually performed using two poles, between which the men perform gravity defying acrobatics.

During a pole dancing fitness class, which are often similar to aerobics or dance classes in their format, students begin with a cardiovascular warm up, use dynamic stretching and strength drills to prepare and then learn a series of tricks, climbs and inverts and often then put them into a dance routine to practice transitions and develop their endurance. One other thing that is often reported by women who have taken up pole dancing for fitness is a feeling of empowerment and increased confidence. Whether this is because of their developing strength, skill, grace or simply a sense of achievement, differs from student to student.

Pole dancing now focuses on the fitness, acrobatics and dance performance aspects and competitions are fierce. Some dancers are lean contortion machines whilst some look like they could be body builders in their spare time. Women and men compete on a regular basis around the world in a number of styles, all with absolutely breathtaking performances. Pole dancing has definitely come a long way from the sexy tent pole dancing where it began!

History of Pole Dancing Essay