Ballet Vs Modern Dance

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Updated: Jun 26, 2022
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Ballet is the art of spiritualized plasticity, thought embodied in movement, life shown by means of choreography, and modern ballet differs significantly from classical ballet. It uses movements from a wide variety of dance styles. Sometimes there is no plot in it, and the dance simply conveys a certain mood.
The 20th century significantly influenced the development of ballet art. The classical style gradually begins to acquire new elements of dance, and the image of each dancer also changes.

But do not forget that now there is also a new direction of ballet, which is no worse than modern dances.

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If classical ballet is the harmony of music and dance, which are inextricably linked, then modern ballet is, first of all, an experiment.

Classical dance has become an excellent basis for the development of a completely different direction in ballet – modern dance (modern style ballet). Modern ballet dance, thanks to a certain freedom of movement and dance, not constrained by numerous rules, allows one to get carried away with ballet even in adulthood. After all, modern dance does not require excellent technique, the main thing in it is the natural plasticity of the body, which allows performing complex movements.

Modern dances are more dynamic and develop much faster than ballet, since the base of movements itself is not fully assembled.

Modern choreography is freedom: both in movement and in the understanding of art in general. Classical art creates a framework that fetters choreographers and dancers. Especially in Russia, due to historical events and mentality, these frameworks are especially strong – new non-standard choreographic solutions developing abroad could not take root in the USSR. This framework can be clearly traced in the dance: the movements are often precise, tight, closed. Modern choreography, on the other hand, does not follow the strict forms of classical dance, instead, non-traditional movements are explored, choreographers strive to seek new forms, develop new styles, explore the boundaries of the human body and ways to visually express feelings and emotions. Any movement of the body can become a dance. Modern dance also gives freedom to speak on any topic through dance, to experiment with space – to leave the stage and enter new venues.

Pay attention to researching yourself

In classical dance, dancers often remain just bodies – they are told what to do, where to look, how to move. This makes the dancer’s movements artificial, and all that comes out is a beautiful aesthetic picture. At the heart of modern choreography is a research approach, which consists in studying one’s own characteristics and capabilities: bodily, psychological, emotional. It can be an appeal to your experience, which is then transferred into movement. The main focus is on the study of movements, their relationship, the study of what dancers and their bodies are capable of, the interaction of dancers with each other, time and space. Movements are born not only from the choreographer’s idea, but also from the dancers’ study of themselves, joint experiments and discoveries.

Notice how dancers have different styles

In modern choreography, the emphasis is on revealing the individuality of the dancer rather than simply training and using the body as a tool. Everyone on the stage is individual – as a person, a person, a character. The same is true for physical capabilities. Modern dance neglects ideals and emphasizes the peculiarities of everyone’s style. A dancer can “be himself” on stage – movement becomes more authentic, free. This is how the unique style of each individual artist or group is born.

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Ballet vs Modern Dance. (2021, Jun 30). Retrieved from