Ancient Greece

Greece was the home of a myriad of festivals, which included dancing along with other festivities. In addition, there were ecstatic dances, "mania", associated with the mystery schools and gods such as Dionysus, the dancing god. On the stage, the chorus in the tragedies that were performed would often dance intricate dances. In fact, their "cheironomia" is where we get the first half of the word choreography. (The second half, of course, is to write - so literally, writing down the dance.) Dance in Greece spanned both integrated dance and dance-as-art. It was still linked to religion, but also moving towards the stage.

In Greece, as well as in any area where they had slaves, the slavesí dance tended to be small and constrained. This goes back to what I said in class 1 about space, including psychological space/freedom, and its effect on the dance.

If you happened to see the first part of the closing ceremonies of the Olympics in Athens, you saw a couple of different Greek dances.

Pictures & Articles

Some of these have interesting articles, and others I included only for the pictures - those might be for event listings, etc., but the pictures are nice.

Greek Dancing Through the Centuries
Dance in Ancient and Modern Greece
Brief Description of the Greek Dance
Macedonian Dancers (picture)
Ancient Greek Dance

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