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Is there anything new in dance? Yes. Performers do their best to bring fresh ideas and set new standards for artistic value. There is no earthly way of knowing what will happen in dance by 2050. What is certain is that the music will continue to make the blood surge in our veins and we will readily move our bodies to the rhythm.

It is surprising to see how much dance has evolved and changed throughout the years. In the 18th century, dance reached a level of sophistication that was not seen again until the early 20th century. Of course, we are talking about baroque dance. At present, dancers, as well as historians, are making great efforts to revive the spirit of 18th-century productions, although they are very different from their modern counterparts. Let us learn more, shall we?

 

Dance in the baroque times

Not many are aware of the fact that baroque dance was the precursor of ballet. But what is baroque dance, anyway? As the name suggests, it is a style of dance, that eclipsed all others in the Age of Reason. It was popular just until the French Revolution of 1789. One person who had an important contribution to the development and promotion of the expressive style of dance was Louis XIV or Le Roi Soleil. The King of France loved dancing and, during his reign, two dances were developed: social dances, which were for ballrooms, and theatrical dances for court entertainments.

People at the court were expected to move their feet and body to the music of Couperin, Rameau, and Charpentier. As far as the development of baroque dance is concerned, it is important to talk about the dance notation system - in other words, the recording of movement through the use of symbols. The system was initially a technique by people at the court could master the new dances. The publication Chorégraphie, which appeared in 1700, contained recordings of many steps and variations, including but not limited to pas de Menuet or ballonné.

The bends, or the pliés, played an important role in determining the rhythmic components of the choreography, being made before the first beat of the measure, while the risings, which were important as well, were performed during the first beat of the bar. The steps were dominated by rapid footwork, which was supposed to be executed without much difficulty. Concerning the utilization of the arm, it was characterized by precision. While one arm was held at hip level, the other went round, upward and inward from the elbow.

The battle between old and contemporary dance will continue to go on. The good news is that people are just as interested in learning how to perform a baroque dance as they are in contemporary theatrical dance and reading Craig's third autobiography, the renowned dancer, and choreographer. Baroque dance went out of fashion a long time ago, but that does not mean that it is not practiced in modern times. Many individuals take dance classes to learn this classic style. In the beginning, they are barely able to put two steps together. However, after some time, they can dance well. Those who are interested in taking a trip to the 18th century can do so effortlessly.

Composers from the time

The baroque period was witness to some of the greatest pieces of music. The music from that historic period is still popular nowadays, no matter how hard that is to believe. Classical music is not dying, which is good news. The records of music from the Renaissance era sell very well. At present, you have access to an almost endless catalog of music. It is normal to wonder what makes baroque music so enchanting. Well, it is hard to put your finger on it. Composers of the time learned by trial and error. To be more precise, they experimented with musical instruments and polyphonic textures and forms.

Composers of instrumental music knew that their creations were strong tools of communication and took advantage of this to arouse emotion in listeners. Instruments you should know by sight and sound are flutes, violins, organs, oboes, and recorders. Those who had a significant impact on the future, as well as the evolution of music were Bach, Vivaldi, Handel, Corelli, Telemann, Purcell, Rameau, and Pachelbel. These people introduced the notions or melody and harmony. It goes without saying that there is something special about baroque music since it has succeeded in reaching out to numerous individuals.

Baroque dance introduced to the new generation   

Baroque dance was the highlight of the Great Century. The dancer was the instrument and the music was created especially for them. The dance and the music complete each other. In the absence of dance, the intention of the melody is unexecuted. Today, there is a revival of interest in classic dances, professionals, and amateurs performing 18th-century dances. Dancers, choreographers, and educators do their best to continue the growth of baroque dance. People, for their part, want to know a great deal more about this style of dance. Individuals from all over the world support the revival of the 18th century.

Are there any benefits to training in baroque music? As a matter of fact, there are. The performing art creates a connection to the past, offering the opportunity to engage with the ideology of the Age of Reason. In the Enlightenment era, the firm belief was that the human body is part of the cosmic organism. It should not, therefore, come as a surprise that baroque dance was so dynamic. Most importantly, the baroque era placed significant emphasis on gesture and performance study. Performers had to pay great attention to their use of gesture and their stage show. Let us not forget about the musicality. The pulse of the music and the elegance of the classic dance is present in every movement.

Many choose to dedicate their lives to baroque music and dance and it is not hard to understand why. You can too if you want. Technique is preferable, but it is not necessary. You just have to dance.