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Dancing as a Kind of Art Essay

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Updated: Mar 15th, 2020


Dancing denotes a kind of art that normally engages the movement of the dancer’s body, usually rhythmically and to the music. Dancing is done in different cultures as a way of sensational expression, social relations, sacred, acting, or physical activity. In addition to being a form of entertainment, dancing can thus be considered a style of passing a given message. There exist numerous styles in addition to genres of dance.

Dance Origins: Sacred vs. Secular Dance

As seen in the video, there are physical dissimilarities in sacred dance among European, African, and Indian cultures. The European cultures engaged young boys dancing in places of worship, the African culture was interpretative with little body movement, and participants moving through the street after the leader, whereas the Indian culture involved the application of hand gestures to illustrate things like feelings and nature.

The leader being followed in the African case was costumed in drapes of fabric and a mask. The young girls in the Indian example are dancing on the Mandala as well as the male soldierly dancer. Religious worship includes every movement that conveys spiritual encounters as part of the worship service, gathering experience, or personal religious practice.

Different spiritual groups consider that the faithful ought to praise the name and magnificence of God not just with their lips, but as well with their entire being, spirit, mind, and body.

They think that dance assists the person fully and more deeply in praying and worshiping God. A psychological gain of dancing is that it generates a contented temperament. Happy and with a satisfied heart, the dancer worships the Lord and conveys his or her thankfulness to Him.

Dancing could be done in a strategized style where it is practiced in a more dramatic background or could be practiced impulsively as a free performance of worship by a congregation. Making use of dance with a dance-drama style attracts concentration to the mimetic feature of dancing that may acquire balletic nature, but modern dance is similarly suitable.

It is especially so when what is visualized encompasses both a dance-group and a full congregation. It is barely essential to indicate that when dance could impart public worship, it could be a significant part of private worship. Dancing is thus appropriate in religious worship. The application of dance as a way of worshipping and praising God is common in the movies and in the bible too.

After attaining victories in battles, the Israelites worshipped God through dancing (1 Samuel 18), Jeremiah made a prophecy that the Israelites could worship God in dancing after going back to their land (Jeremiah 31: 4-13).

Additionally, David praised God through dancing when the ark was taken to Jerusalem (2 Samuel 6) and Miriam danced in expressing gratitude to God when the Israelites crossed the sea (Exodus 15). God also demands dancing as a section of praise and worship and David affirmed that God had changed his grieving into dancing (Psalms 30).

Folk dance

To different individuals in diverse cultural origins, music and dance are vital elements in their existence. Music and dance help individuals to stay in touch with their cultural origins, as people from particular cultural origins regularly conduct the performances and thus even the offspring find an established way of bonding individuals from a given cultural origin and carry on with it.

To the majority of individuals in diverse cultures, music is described as tones arranged horizontally as tunes and perpendicularly as harmonies. The boundary between music and noise is at all times culturally described, thus signifying that even with just one community this boundary does not necessarily occur at the same point, in other words, there seldom exists an agreement.

There is not even one intercultural general perception describing what music could be. The expressions “ethnic” and “traditional” are employed when there is a need to stress the cultural origin of the music or dance. In this regard, almost every folk dance is ethnic.

Although several dances like polka go past ethnic borders and cross the border of folk dance and ballroom dance, ethnic variations are regularly substantial enough to state; for instance, German, and Czech polka.

Individuals familiar with folk dance can regularly establish a country where a dance originates even if they have not observed that specific dance before. Several dances for particular countries bear aspects that are distinctive to those nations, even though neighboring nations at times have comparable aspects.

For instance, dances from Germany and Australia bear striking of the body and shoes in a predetermined pattern, an aspect that dances from other nations bear. Folk dances in the past advanced earlier than present political boundaries, a matter that makes some dances to be shared by numerous nations. International folk dances are found in towns and in universities where dancers are taught dances from different cultures for leisure.

Jarabe Tapatio has turned out to be the most widely accepted kind of folk dance in Mexico. The Jarabe Tapatio (also referred to as the Mexican hat dance) had been outlawed courtesy of the colonial masters owing to its sexual outlook and common challenge to the Spanish regulation.

The folkloric ballet (Ballet Folkloric) in Mexico has demonstrated dances in outfits that reveal the traditional ethnicity of Mexicans for a very long period. The ballet operations and music reveal different cultural origins and varieties of harmony in Mexico.

The Nuevo Leon folkloric costume has leather-bordered vests, boots, and hats for males and clothes directly from “The Sound of Music” for females and the hair is plaited with ribbons. Contrary to numerous Mexican Indian ethnic groups, females are permitted to dance in the Michoacán with males wearing white pants and sash broidered shirts while the females wear black shirts an apron of different colors and a white broidered shirt.

Social Dance

In social dance, socializing is the focus of dancing and dancing can be carried out with different partners and still be done in a calm and easy environment. In the societies featured in the program, the greatest changes in social dancing from the past to the present is observed in American society. In the 18th and 19th centuries, social dance in the United States turned out to be a medium for focused social activity.

Sophisticated balls and confidential parties presented a way for a man to search for a partner in marriage and permitted pals and members of a family to socialize through music and dance. In the early times, Americans were limited in their kinds of communication since it was noticeably unavailable.

Poor technology leads to restricted communication that consequently generates a setting where individuals have no way of getting in touch with others far-off with the simplicity and comfort experienced in the contemporary global society.

From the early times, social dancing has provided a channel for personal expression and a way of generating a sense of society since it presents a ground for individuals to interact with one another through the application of non-verbal and ethnically suitable gestures and movements.

With social standards and grades being articulated through movement and physical expression, comprehending dance performance was vital to the people that desired being received by the elite society. Just by the tilt of a hat or a twist of a sunshade, a person would declare an interest in a different person without uttering a thing. Like a cultural meeting point, the United States welcomed a range of dances.

Different dances resulted from the mixing of cultures whereas others originated in one nation and passed through many others prior to penetrating the American culture. A number of dances that are currently deemed typically American have European roots. In the American traditional society, dancing was not at all times openly embraced by society in entirety.

Particular conservatives in addition to religious sets rejected the performance of dance with cruel disapproval and displeasure to bar wildness and disorder. Nonetheless, such barriers have died out with time as varying cultural conditions ushered a period where dance was not just as a fun, but as well an influential social instrument. On the contrary, in the case of Morocco, the notion of males and females dancing together would be rare.

In the Moroccan society, men partook in social dancing that entailed items like rifles and swords. Within the culture of Morocco, there were regulations that controlled the association of both male and female dancers.

Similar to the case of American society, the Polynesian female and male dancers engaged in dancing as a social activity; however, the choreography for the dancers usually varies noticeably. Therefore, the styles and kinds of social dance rely upon the culture and standards of a particular society.

Classical Dance

Classical dance has critical value in the modern world. It adopts the essential practice and body movement (applying abdominal power) standards, but allows a high degree of movement and could adhere to the stringent bodylines. Most impressions of classical dance emanate from thoughts and innovations of the modern dance of the twentieth century.

Some of the practices of classical dance employed in the modern world dance encompass floor work and use of the legs (barefoot). The classical dance in the Indian society is a moderately new umbrella expression for different statute art types anchored in theatrical styles, whose presumption originated from Natya Shastra. Classical dance is widely known for the use of facial expressions as a vital section of the dance type.

Ballet (Kabuki) is more physically demanding and more dramatic when compared to classical dance. The most extensively recognized ballet style is romantic ballet. The romantic ballet is a classical style that concentrates on women dancers and has gushing as well as particular acrobatic motions and it frequently portrays female dancers in traditional, very short, and white French skirts.

Professional performers design and carry out ballet performances and frequently the performances are done with the addition of a classical tune. In the early times, ballets came before the introduction of the proscenium phase and they were conducted in big halls with the audience sitting on tiers or verandas on the sides of the hall.

Modern kabuki encompasses mimic as well as drama and it normally gets on with music (characteristically orchestral, but from time to time vocal). Ballets necessitate a long period of training to understand and master. Additionally, ballets demand a lot of practice to maintain adeptness and they have been taught in ballet schools across the globe that has all through employed their cultures to advance the art.

The kabuki is the basis of different kinds of dance depending on the place of their origin. Taking the example of the classical Japanese dance-drama, Kabuki is regarded for the stylisation of its stage show as well as the expression of sophisticated cosmetics worn by some of the dancers.

In this regard, Kabuki denotes an activity or stage show done in actual life in an expected or stylised manner. Therefore, apart from expressing the cultures of their respective origin, ballet is delegated to generate the sense of conflict of an uncertain result, when in reality the dancers have collaborated to establish the result in advance.

Jazz Dance

Jazz dance denotes a categorization shared by a wide scope of dancing styles that before 1950 referred to styles originating from African American dances. Jazz is a kind of dance with its origin from vernacular African dances when slaves were taken to the United States during the slave trade epoch. This kind of dance was established together with jazz music in the period between 1901 and 1910.

Starting from the 1930s through to 1960s, jazz dance changed the vernacular type into a theatre-anchored performance type that demanded a professional dancer. The modern jazz dance came into being at around 1950 with its origin in the Caribbean traditional dance. Each style of jazz dance has some roots emanating from one of the aforementioned distinctive origins.

Jazz dance was a famous hit between 1950 and 1955 and it is up to date a liked style across the universe with some of its common moves being Jazz Hands, Turned Knees, and Leaps. The expression “Jazz” was initially used to a fashion of song and dance in the period when the First World War was taking place.

In the period of 1960s, choreographers of the modern and ballet inclinations like George Balanchine, Helen Tamiris, and Bob Fosse just to mention but a few tried the jazz dance style. Every one of the choreographers that took part impacted jazz dance by demanding professional dancers to do a particular kind of body movements that highly varied from the vernacular type.

On the contrary, ballet originated from Italy and France from the prolific court shows that merged music, costumes, stage show, poems, songs, and dancing. The partakers in the court decency participated as actors, and when Louis XIV was in power, dance turned out o be more systemized attributable to the fact that Louis was himself a dancer.

During this period, trained dancers started assuming the positions of court amateurs while the government of France had approved ballet trainers thus allowing the opening of the initial ballet dance academy in 1661 that was called Royal Dance Academy. Shortly afterward, the initial devoted ballet band, which had connections with the Academy, was set up. This band started with all the members being male but encompassed females before 1681.

Modern Dance

Modern dance is an expression that normally denotes the twentieth-century concert dance though it has been practiced in a class of the twentieth-century ballroom dances. Modern dance rejected the emphasis of traditional ballet on feet being a basic channel for dance engagements.

On the contrary, modern dance puts emphasis on torso using such components as contact-free, floor work, and improvisation though it was normally done in bare feet and with modern costumes. At the start of the twentieth century, there came into being an outburst of novelty in dance style typified by a discovery of freer practice.

The early initiators of the now modern dance encompassing Isadora Duncan, Katherine Dunham, Martha Graham, and George Balanchine all had their visualization of what dancing ought to be. Modern dance best associates with the vision of Martha Graham. Martha Graham started her endeavors in the 1920s and lead to the establishment of an extensive range of dance styles across the globe.

Even though it is usually presumed that traditions have primordial history, the majority of traditions have been established on a given reason; some political and others cultural in a short time, and thus for dance to evolve as an art form, tradition should be employed as a foundation of a new technique. The perception of tradition, as the thought of hanging on to an earlier time, is as well present in dance styles.

For instance, the cultural perception of traditionalism is anchored around it, as the different dance styles have maintained their cultural origins. For the evolving of dance, tradition is important as it determines the proper demonstration of an art form.

For instance, in the presentation of traditional dances, conformity to the directives directing the way an art form ought to be developed are accorded greater significance as compared to the own inclinations of the dancer. Different aspects could intensify diminishment of tradition and include industrialization, internalization, and the marginalization of some cultural groups.

In reaction to the loss of tradition, tradition-conservation endeavors have currently been launched in different nations across the universe by concentrating on factors like traditional languages. In this regard, the perception of tradition has been employed in safeguarding the protection and reintroduction of marginalized languages.


Dance is significant throughout history and in the biblical concept. This paper discussed the application of dances in the course of early and modern history. In this regard, Christians ought to feel free and possibly even take charge of presenting worship to God in the way of the art of dancing.

Dancing is among the most striking forms of art that have evolved in leaps and bounds and instead of just being a spare-time activity, dancing has turned out to be a very worthwhile career. In addition, dance remedy is so much in fashion nowadays just because the practice of dancing assists an individual to cure of the inside.

Dancing is thus a type of expression that assists an individual to find out a new world. Different kinds of dances and dance styles as discussed in this paper are widespread across the globe and act as a sign of reputation for this form of art.

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