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Different Types of Dance Classifications Essay

Related Topics: Music Ballet Women Society

Pages:2 (660 words)




Document Type:Essay


Dance is often said to be one of the unique aspects of being human. Dance can be informal or formal in nature. Some dances are performed solo; others in pairs or groups. Specific dances may have a sacred or ceremonial component. Some dances are mainly performed by people of a specific gender or stage of life. Other dances are art forms in and of themselves. One of the most famous of these is ballet, a medium which requires years of intensive study, usually beginning at an early age. Yet while the art of ballet versus a form of dance which emerges organically from the streets may seem to have little in common, all forms of dance still share common connections.

Ballet, for example, as a classic style of dance originated as a highly formalized style involving intensive preparation to pointe work for women and a highly turned out style for both genders (“Types of Ballet”). Early ballets like The Nutcracker tended to be heavily story-driven, although more modern forms of ballet, such as famously practiced by George Balanchine’s company, used more impressionistic and symbolic storylines and more athletic approaches to this art of dance (“Types of Ballet”). Modern ballet is even more iconoclastic and may do away with the use of pointe in general and may use turned-in rather than turned-out styles of physicality (“Types of Ballet”). Dance forms can therefore change over time with society, even formalized modalities like ballet.

Another example of a dance form which has changed a great deal is social or partner dancing. But while ballet has changed and evolved primarily with artistic needs, couples-style dancing has primarily evolved based upon social needs. According to A Dance with Jane Austen: How a Novelist and her Characters went to the Ball by Susannah Fullterton, in the 19th century when the genders were highly segregated, social dancing was one of the few events in which men and women could be intimate (“A Dance with Jane Austen by Susannah Fullerton – A Review”). Even in later eras, when there was greater social mixing between the genders, social dancing from swing to pop became a way for men and women to get to know one another and physically close when it was forbidden as immoral and indecent elsewhere.

Social dancing was also a form of social interaction and civility, especially when it was necessary to have some…

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Works Cited

“A Dance with Jane Austen by Susannah Fullerton – A Review.” Jane Austen’s World. September 15, 2012. Web. July 2, 2019.

“Types of Ballet.” Pittsburgh Ballet Theater. Web. July 2, 2019. ballet/

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