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Dancelocked

  • Julia Sutton,
  • E. Kerr Borthwick,
  • Ingrid Brainard,
  • Jennifer Nevile,
  • Rebecca Harris-Warrick,
  • Andrew Lamb
  •  and Helen Thomas

Extract

Dance, like all the arts, finds expression in an apparently infinite range of styles, forms and techniques: it may satisfy the simplest inner needs for emotional release through motor activity, as in children’s singing-games, or the most complex demands of the creative artist on the professional stage; it may be profoundly subjective or philosophical, or purely decorative or virtuoso; it ranges from the ecstatically Dionysiac to the calmly Apollonian, the hypnotic to the cerebral, the totally pantomimic to the totally abstract, the completely functional – that is, serving a social or ritual purpose – to art for art’s sake. Like music, dance may be performed either in solitary privacy, or by groups for their own satisfaction, or in a concert or theatrical setting. Thus its pleasures may be gained either by direct participation or vicariously. As a theatrical art it goes hand in hand with costume and scenery, music and poetry. As such, it is frequently part of religious rites or put to the service of the state. These associations are not unusual for any art. What seems to be unique to dance, however, is that it appears never to stand alone, but always to be accompanied by musical sound, at however simple a level. For the ancient Greeks, in fact, music, dance and poetry were represented by the single term ...

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