What Is The Value Of Dance As Art?

The common perception of ‘art’ is a painting, preferable oil on canvas, that was completed centuries ago by an old master from Europe. Art is much more than that, however. It stretches way back to prehistoric times when cave dwellers mixed whatever they had to create pigments which they would decorate their walls with. It also can be found in the first musical notes they purposefully sounded on rudimentary instruments and the dances they inspired. This essay will look closely and some of the key ways that dance has artistic value.

Theatrical Applicability

Many of the masterpieces that have been painted or sketched have gone on to inspire theatrical works. In making the transition from static to dynamic work, the use of creative movement becomes extremely important. A dancer can take the character from text on a page and paint on a canvas and turn it into a moving entity that an audience can view and understand in many ways. The body language and facial expressions communicate the personality in the more visceral ways that modern humans have grown to neglect.

Three Dimensional

An artistic display of dance has the additional benefit of being able to be viewed from several different angles. With that feature, choreographers can create multiple scenes within a single dance and even use the dancer’s bodies and relevant props to create images that can only be seen from above. Some of these are quite simple while others are so complicated that each person involved seems to make up just a single pixel in the wider scene.


Where the person who looks at a painting can only really be an observer of the creation, and audience member in certain recitals may be encouraged to move as well thereby expanding the choreography. The line between the ‘artist’ and the ‘observer’ therefore becomes blurred. Not all creative movement professionals encourage this sort of thing but in cases where it takes place, audience members often report feeling transformed as a result. Some even go on to learn more about the craft so they can become more deeply involved over time.

There is an artist in every choreography even if it is more evident in some than others. Through more analytic observation, more and more people will likely come to recognize this and expand their concepts of artistic presentation.

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