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The Functions of Dance

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Rachel Grieve

on 10 July 2012

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Transcript of The Functions of Dance

Dance is an ancient form of expression that uses movement, rather than spoken word to communicate meaning. Dance serves many functions and one way in which we can categorise these is under the headings -
Social, Ritual and Artistic.
Ritual dance is used for worship, celebration, ceremonies or as a rite of passage. There is no emphasis on audience as all present are usually involved. These dances are passed on within the community and are generally not for outsiders. The main purpose is communication.
This function is for everyone regardless of ability. The basic steps are usually simple and can be performed solo, with partners or in large groups. The audience are usually casual observers and will often participate themselves. Almost any venue is appropriate for Social Dance. The main purpose is participation.
Artistic Dance is specifically rehearsed and performed for an audience. The steps become more specialised and usually require a certain degree of skill. The audience is formal and is separated from the performers. The main purpose is entertainment.
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