The Commerce of Dance: A Postmodern Analysis of the Firm’s Role in Shaping Dance in Brisbane

By Nicole Galea and Brett Freudenberg.

Published by The International Journal of Arts Theory and History

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: July 3, 2014 $US5.00

Theatre dance (notably ballet) can be seen as part of the domain of high culture and the social elite. However, through a historical postmodern analysis of one major company’s role (the Firm) in Brisbane (Australia) between 1926 and 1960, it becomes evident that the Firm, when faced with the commercial reality of running a theatre business, blurred social classes when it came to the promotion of theatre dance. The first part of this paper will provide the theoretical background of historiography, cultural theory, and notions of class, as well as the popular high art debate. The research method adopted will then be outlined before discussing the results. Through this postmodern analysis of what occurred in Brisbane, a greater appreciation of the influential link between commerce and dance is established. In particular, it will be argued that this commercial impact (or influential link) related to the major influence of the Firm in running a production company and the blurring of classes involved. It was this commercial link that was critical in the shaping of ballet in Brisbane as it occurred at a time prior to any systematic government support.

Keywords: Dance, Commerce, Historiography, Cultural Theory

The International Journal of Arts Theory and History, Volume 8, Issue 2, July 2014, pp.1-10. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: July 3, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 428.966KB)).

Nicole Galea

Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Dr. Brett Freudenberg

Associate Professor, Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Nathan, Queensland, Australia