Term Paper: Classical and Contemporary Dancing

Pages: 2 (738 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Plays  ·  Buy This Paper

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] Likewise, both Kabuki and traditional ballet have certain stock characters or types, such as the main hero or heroine, and many members of the company specialize in such stock types, such as the prince of ballet theater, the older characters danced by members past their prime, or in the case of Kabuki, men who specialize in female roles.

Yet, as delineated in Chapter 7 of Jonas, changes in contemporary culture demanded that ballet theater change with the times. Classical dance gradually shifted from storied productions to less standard tales, from fairy princes and princesses to more symbolic works of fiction and nonfiction. The classical motions to tell the stories thus also, by necessity, became less pantomime-like and more expressive, even while retaining the continuity of the essential art of ballet. Chapter 7 of Jonas on Contemporary Dance tells of how modern dance created a new art form in response to ballet, yet was still contiguous with much of the evolving ballet tradition. Ballet itself responded to the evolution of modern dance with a freer and more expressive style.

Likewise, Kabuki theater was able to remain within the same tradition and retain the tradition's essential forms yet change its significance and modes of expression -- for example, to this day, all female parts are played by male impersonators in Kabuki theater, and there is a standard repertoire as there is in many classical ballet companies. But Kabuki Theater is no longer a purely popular art -- it too has changed, even as it has remained stylized, because the audience, as with all performance-based art, has changed.

Kabuki has become a vestige of Japanese culture, where before it was a popular art form.

Ballet is not regarded as a cultural relic like Kabuki. But it is no longer popular in the sense that it is performed in popular dance halls and theaters. Thus classical ballet has also changed -- changed with what the audience has come to expect, after the rise of modern dance, and changed, to include more popular means of representing dance through its parallel dialogue with modern dance forms.

Works Cited

Jonas, Gerald. Dancing: The Pleasure, Power, and Art of Movement. New York: Harry… [END OF PREVIEW]

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