Dancing To Death
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Student Life

Dancing To Death

The joy and art that is dance needs more recognition for the hard work it takes to be successful in the performance and creative world.


A young woman is dancing her heart out in her abandoned warehouse apartment. Dancing and running and spinning for what seems like days. She loves it more than life itself. She loves it so much that she dances every night at the club after her day job. This isn't just for the extra cash, this is because it is all she has ever wanted. The concept of dance lights a fire of passion in some people. It draws them to the performance and the artistry and makes them feel alive. Another young woman has found her confidence and joy in life through dancing. Nobody can hold her back from her aspirations now. Both of these situations are from popular movies known for their inspirational and fun tones, Flashdance and Dirty Dancing. Those who have seen these movies know that the joy that overtakes the characters in the major dance scenes is difficult to match. Dance can be an inspirational form of communication for all cultures. For this reason, dance should be supported financially and appreciated by all those who wish to live a full life.

In the world of art, dance is among the least funded. Dance is a universal language used to express feeling in ways that cannot be outright spoken. However, the continuation of dance programs and companies around the country are at risk due to the lack of funding and backing of those in authoritative positions and good financial standing. The hard work it takes to earn a degree in dance should be celebrated not shunned. Not everyone can make it in the insane mind game that is the entertainment world. Those who practice art dedicate their lives to it but usually come up short in the financial aspects of life. In order to keep dance alive, the public needs to see its worth and provide the proper support.

Grants are the most obvious route to arts funding, but they are becoming more and more difficult to come by. (Financing Creation). Many dance companies rely on grants and generous donations, but as time goes on money is running low. New generations are living with the thought that dancers love to dance so much that they will do it for free. While dancers and performer do truly love what they do, they still have to make a living. They depend on their employer to provide that for them. However, even distinguished companies have issues in rough patches of the year. "Those organizations have ups and downs, too. One year you get $12,000 and the next you get half that because their funding changed" (Wood).

Nowadays, big productions are expected from the entertainment community on a regular basis. Being able to perform and be involved with production me has revealed the truly strenuous and expensive task that it is. Dance performances, music videos, concert choreography, and all other forms of performance used to be easily attributed to a singular choreographer. Productions now require people involved with videography, lighting, props management, set builders, and costume designers. That is not even discussing the cost of performers, choreographers, and refreshments throughout shoots. The public seems to demand these significantly large ideas, but the expansive costs cannot just appear out of thin air. Many dance organizations are leaning towards high profile projects in order to bring more attention to their program to provide funds. When asked about struggles with projects, most creators discuss financial issues and nothing is mentioned about creative blocks. Without funding, the entertainment business will diminish or lose its flare.

Yes, money can be tight and you are probably thinking that money should not be spent on something so frivolous. Well, dance can be an important component in the development of a child. It is not just about learning a step, it is a way of expression and communication that can benefit young children as they develop. (Camarillo Academy of Performing Arts) The movement of the body aids in the growth process. Kids gain better teamwork, focus, and improvisational skills. Allowing kids to explore how their body moves and interacts with space and time build their awareness of mind and body. It provides a release for stress and a safe place to be free. The dance will create new ways for children to think and learn while building their confidence.

This is not a cry for you to empty your bank account into the nearest dance studio. It is understandable that not everyone sees the beauty in dance, but everyone can enjoy it in some way. Music is a driving factor in the world we live in and movement is a simplistic part of life that is sometimes taken for granted. Movement speaks more than words ever could across language and cultural boundaries. So, next time you or someone pushes dance as a career or as an area of study to the curb, remind them that it takes hard work to be a performer. Then if you happen to come across some money, donate it to the dance world in the form of grants, pay for a ticket to a show, or help a local student vying for their chance on the big stage. It will be worth every penny.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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