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Dance

Dance
Two dancers.jpg
Originating culture Various
Originating era Prehistory-Antiquity

Dance is a performance art form consisting of purposefully selected sequences of human movement. This movement has aesthetic and symbolic value, and is acknowledged as dance by performers and observers within a particular culture. Dance can be categorized and described by its choreography, by its repertoire of movements, or by its historical period or place of origin.

An important distinction is to be drawn between the contexts of theatrical and participatory dance, although these two categories are not always completely separate; both may have special functions, whether social, ceremonial, competitive, erotic, martial, or sacred/liturgical. Other forms of human movement are sometimes said to have a dance-like quality, including martial arts, gymnastics, figure skating, synchronized swimming and many other forms of athletics.

Theatrical dance, also called performance or concert dance, is intended primarily as a spectacle, usually a performance upon a stage by virtuoso dancers. It often tells a story, perhaps using mime, costume and scenery, or else it may simply interpret the musical accompaniment, which is often specially composed. Examples are western ballet and modern dance, Classical Indian dance and Chinese and Japanese song and dance dramas. Most classical forms are centred upon dance alone, but performance dance may also appear in opera and other forms of musical theatre.



  • Abra, Allison. "Going to the palais: a social and cultural history of dancing and dance halls in Britain, 1918–1960." Contemporary British History (Sep 2016) 30#3 pp 432–433.
  • Blogg, Martin. Dance and the Christian Faith: A Form of Knowing, The Lutterworth Press (2011),
  • Carter, A. (1998) The Routledge Dance Studies Reader. Routledge. .
  • Cohen, S, J. (1992) Dance As a Theatre Art: Source Readings in Dance History from 1581 to the Present. Princeton Book Co. .
  • Daly, A. (2002) Critical Gestures: Writings on Dance and Culture. Wesleyan University Press. .
  • Miller, James, L. (1986) Measures of Wisdom: The Cosmic Dance in Classical and Christian Antiquity, University of Toronto Press. .
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Wikipedia

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