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Physical setting in Dance

 
 
alerio
 
Reply Tue 18 Nov, 2003 04:32 pm
Hi,
Thanks
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 7,280 • Replies: 7
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farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 18 Nov, 2003 04:39 pm
NOT A CLUE, I THINK GUS RATZEMHOFER COULD ANSWER THIS, AS HE ESPOUSES COMPLETE RHYTHM
METHODS
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Nov, 2003 10:17 am
Hi alerio. Welcome to A2K.

I did a google search for [GCSE "performing arts" dance essay] and came up with paid sites as well as other information. You might try searching that way.

If they want you to describe the "physical setting" I don't think that that would necessarily include the costumes and the music. I would think that they are looking for a description of the stage, backdrops, scenery, furniture, and possibly major props, special effects, and/or lighting. I'm not familiar with Rooster, so I can't help with specifics.

Let me know how it goes!
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Piffka
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Nov, 2003 10:47 am
I did not study dance but I'm a season subscriber to the local professional ballet company. The physical setting for a dance means... to me... the costumes and the stage setting and its use during the performance. There are frequently descriptions about this in the program notes, sometimes with reference to previous work.

The costumes must be comfortable enough for a dancer to move freely. They are very important in setting the mood, both for the dancers & the audience. The colors make a difference as well and help to distinguish the characters in the dance and establish the emotional response which we have to different colors. In the same respect, the stage setting must allow the dancers to move freely while helping to communicate the background story.

Modern dance stage settings are frequently very spare but use lighting for huge effect. The curtains, the uprights & the costumes often change in response to colored lighting. A recent performance I went to had nearly the entire company of dancers performing in unison in the background like a living wall. It was fantastic and very modern.

I wonder if you could research program notes and reviews of dance productions? Most companies pride themselves on their unique and innovative ideas, so it may be hard to find descriptions except in ephemera. Some stage settings are famous. For example, in Seattle's Pacific NW Dance company, their Nutcracker settings were designed by Maurice Sendak and are like huge storybook illustrations. You can find out more about that and other dance companies physical settings by checking out their websites. These may have their own descriptions of their physical sets and will also have contact information where you could discuss this with the people who design and make them. You have chosen (or been assigned) a very interesting aspect of dance.
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alerio
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Nov, 2003 05:50 pm
Re: Physical setting in Dance
[Dance
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Nov, 2003 08:52 pm
White could be purity or innocence.

Red and black is tougher - red = life (blood) and black = death ? Or maybe they're just the traditional colors of a rooster?

http://www.okeeferanch.bc.ca/images/rooster.jpg
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Piffka
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Nov, 2003 10:32 pm
Colors mean lots of things... white could also mean marriage, ice & coldness, death, heat, brightness, smoke, & it can give the dance a dream-like quality. In Swan Lake the swans are white, yes, because swans are usually white. They are also not human and don't want to associate with humans. They are cold towards them, standoffish and ethereal -- the white shows them outside the world of man. I don't know about shaggy culottes... haven't seen that. Very Happy Sometimes costumers DO get carried away!

Red & Black together are very violent, aggressive colors. They're both hot colors, though black (like white) can also be cold. They're dynamic and usually meant to be frightening onstage. They're also masculine colors.

Pastels are friendly, happy and calm. A male dancer wearing blue will usually be partnered with a ballerina in blue, often in a lighter shade. When they are not partnered together during the dance, it often expresses harmony and community, though usually they'll come back together at the end. You can also follow a ballet by knowing that the main dancing pair will be in a slightly richer, slightly different costume from the rest of the company. They may be the only ones in a certain color... or they may be in color while the others are in black & white, or vice versa.

Because there is no speaking, these things have to communicated through other means... including color. Nationality, status, age, state of mind... these things are also represented through the cut & style of the costume. A character in distress, for example, will frequently wear a costume that appears torn.

Here's an interesting forum you may want to check out: Critical Dance. I haven't read a lot there, but it seems to be a forum for dance set & design specialists... pretty interesting even when they're just griping.
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alerio
 
  1  
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2003 04:45 pm
Physical Setting in Dance
Update 16.12.03
Sorry for late reply but my machine was attacked by viruses. Many thanks for your excellent replies they were perfect.
Best regards Alerio
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