World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Dance for camera

Article Id: WHEBN0000694364
Reproduction Date:

Title: Dance for camera  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: 20th-century concert dance, I'm with Stupid (Pet Shop Boys song)
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Dance for camera

Videodance is a genre of dance made for the camera. In videodance, movement is the primary expressive element in the work rather than dialogue (as in conventional narrative movies) or music (as in music videos). Other names for this form are screendance, dance film, cinedance, and dance for camera.

Defining characteristics

Because movement is a basic element in all time-based visual media forms, videodance is distinguished from other film genres by its emphasis on the craft and composition of movement in the work. Often this movement is recognizable as dance in which people are moving in stylized ways, however in some experimental and animated videodances the movement can be pedestrian and unstylized, or even the motion of animals and inanimate objects.

A related genre that is often confused with videodance is the dance documentary film. This is the documentation of dance as it is practiced in real life such as a live performance (i.e. "Dance in America: 'Swan Lake' by American Ballet Theatre" on Great Performances) or a journalistic profile of a dance company, figure, or community (i.e. DanceMaker about Paul Taylor). Videodance is not a documentation of a dance that could be done in real time in a live setting. It exists only as a fictional or fictionalized dance for screen.

There are a number of different sub-categories and genres of videodance including experimental, narrative, commercial, video games, web dances, and multi-channel installations. Videodance can be seen on almost any media platform from iPods to feature films, commercials and television programs. Currently there are over 150 dance film festivals world wide that feature videodance work.


For every time-based visual media platform there are examples work in which dance and movement are used as the primary expressive tool. For instance in the early days of film before sound, movement was the main vehicle for communication, perfected by the great physical comedians of the day such as Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton. Later experimental filmmakers such as Maya Deren innovated camera and editing techniques to manipulate and redefine our concepts of movement for film. With the rise of video as a conventional medium, videodance was born. Early innovators in this new medium included Merce Cunningham, Nam June Paik, and Alwin Nikolais. Today in the digital age with the rise of affordable digital video equipment, there are a number of notable dance film makers, choreographers and directors working in this medium including British choreographer/director Lloyd Newson of DV8 Physical Theatre, Australian directors/choreographers Richard James Allen and Karen Pearlman of The Physical TV Company, American director Mitchell Rose, American filmmaker Charles Atlas (Media Dance) Belgian director Thierry de Mey, and New Zealand director/choreographer Shona McCullagh.

Early film 1900-1930

1. Edison

2. Melies

3. Silent Films

Musicals 1930-1950

Busby Berkeley, Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly

Experimentalists 1940-60

1. Maya Deren 2. Hilary Harris 3. Yvonne Rainer

Video 1960-90

1. Nikolais/Ed Emshwiller

2. Merce Cunningham/Nam June Paik Pts in Space

3. Alive from Off Center

4. MTV

5. Carlos Saura films ("Sevillanas", "Flamenco")

Digital Age 1990-2007

Internet art

Amateur videographers

Videogames - DDR, Second Life

Motion Capture Animation

See also



Article: "A Dance of Definitions" by Karen Pearlman

External links

  • Dance Films Association's Dance on Camera Festival on Hulu
  • DV8 Physical Theatre
  • Interface International Encounter INTERFACE Chile
  • Dance Films Association
  • Dance, Voldo, Dance'
  • IMZ dance screen
  • Media & Dance Network
  • The Physical TV Company
  • Videodance at Mediateca Media Art Space
  • "Videodance", a 1975 article in Dancescope magazine by Jeff Bush and Peter Z Grossman
  • ARC Videodance
  • International Videodance Festival of Chile, FIVC
  • DANCELEN(D)S Cinemade:tanzfilm
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.