The dance community is a world of pliés, spirals, and jazz hands. The technical elements have slowly but surely become the highest priority for many dance companies, conventions, and festivals. The emotional connection is at the root of dance. We dance to celebrate and express our inner thoughts and ideas? Don’t we? Yet, dance educators and choreographers are focusing more on how high the leg is or if the hip is down that the dancers end up frustrated not understanding what to do with their faces and as a result do nothing. This research will explore why these ideas are being perpetuated and emotions are no longer as important in the Western dance aesthetic. In order to create new ideas and techniques that we can use for the 21st century dancer, I will examine dance forms such as Bugaku,Kabuki,and Classical Indian Dance where facial expressions and emotions are of the utmost importance. Also, I will discuss my practical applications in various jazz classes at Western Michigan University and what techniques produce results and what appears to be ineffective. These results will offer new insights for teachers and choreographers on how they can produce dancers that can bring out their emotions naturally and without affectation.
|Keywords:||Dance, Emotional Connections|
Assistant Professor, Dance Department, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA
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