Seminar: The History of Dance

Ref: C3744681

The illustrated course will cover key historical periods in dance as a performance art including its establishment in the 17th Century theatre under the patronage of Louis XIV. It will explain how the early 19th Century 'Romantic' movement in the arts in general led to significant developments in dance as an art form and why the great Russian classical ballets, such as Swan Lake and The Nutcracker, were created. It will demonstrate how the innovatory artists of the Diaghilev Ballet Russes brought new themes for dance in the early 20th century which, in turn, led to greater diversity and virtuosity in dance as a performance art today.

Additional information about this course

This course is not funded by the Education Skills Funding Agency and does not have a fee waiver but concessions may be available-contact the Branch for further details

Course aim

To provide an introduction to the history of dance from its roots in the 17th Century court of Louis XIV with a view to gaining an appreciation of dance as a performance art today.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers
  • The course is for anyone who would like to know more about how dance developed into the diverse and virtuoso performance art it is today.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • appreciate how dance developed from its early 17th Century roots into the diverse and virtuoso art form it is today.
  • appraise how ballets such as Giselle embodied the 19th Century 'Romantic' movement in the arts and why this evolved into the creation of some of the great classic ballets, such as Swan Lake, popular throughout the world today.
  • Recognise how innovatory artists of the early 20th Century Ballet Russes, such as Bakst and Picasso, led to new and diverse themes for dance as a performance art today.
  • Recognise how innovatory artists of the early 20th Century Ballet Russes, such as Bakst and Picasso, led to new and diverse themes for dance as a performance art today.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • It may be helpful to bring with you some means for note taking and information.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation

Download full course information sheet

Seminar: The History of Dance

Enrolment Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2019
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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