International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

Towards the Theories and Practice of the Dance Art
Uji Charles, Awuawuer Tijime Justin

The issues confronted by most choreographers, dance teachers and dance critics are the problems relating to the theories and practice of dance as an art, vis-à-vis conceptualizing it as an arts genre that permeates all facets of human life and culture without recourse to the fact that like any other art, dance is entirely within the domains of theories. Even most choreographers and dancers ‘believe’ that they are outside of theory, outside of discourse, in the pure domain of technique, effect, or communication. To this end, four theories are identified in this paper as fundamental models in the theory and practice of dance. These theories are philosophical aesthetic theory; choreologists aesthetic theory; sociological aesthetic theory; and medical/therapeutic dance theory. Thus, various functionalities of dance will be discussed in relation to specific theories that are afore mentioned. After a critical discourse, this paper positions dance as an art, ritual, or recreation that goes beyond the functional purposes of the movements used in work or athletics in order to express emotions, moods, or ideas; tell a story; serve religious, political, economic, or social needs; or simply be an experience that is pleasurable, exciting, or aesthetically valuable. Thus, the desire of this paper is to unravel the mystery behind the mastery and the mystery of human movement and to encourage wider participation in the art of dance as any artistic genre.

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