According to Google, the definition of dance is, “a series of movements that match the speed and rhythm of a piece of music.” OK, I can agree with that, but they're missing the real essence of dance. Dance is all of your emotions put together into a single piece. It’s not always beautiful, and people don’t always understand it, and although it’s hard to explain, I will try with help from some of my favorite quotes. The first is one of my all time favorites.
“Great dancers are not great because of their technique. They are great because of their passion." - Martha Graham
I know I have little to no technique, so I really like this quote. Don’t get me wrong, technique is important, but seeing someone who really enjoys what they're doing is so cool. When people tell me my passion for dance shows in my performances, it makes me feel amazing. Plus, people tend to forgive technique errors when they watch your routine if you capture them with your passion, and you get the true meaning of your dance across to the audience.
“To touch. To move. To inspire. This is the true gift of dance.” - Aubrey Lynch
When you watch a dancer who puts their all into a dance, it speaks volumes. When you're dancing, the audience should be feeling whatever you're feeling on the stage. Routines that make an audience walk away thinking, "What on Earth did I just watch?" are usually the better ones. A lot of dancers can memorize steps and then repeat them in front of people, but a true dancer takes the choreography to the next level through emotions and making it their own.
“While I dance I can not judge. I can not hate, I can not separate myself from life. I can only be joyful and whole. This is why I dance.” - Hans Bos
When you're dancing, you're in your own world. Nothing else matters. All worries, frustrations, and stresses are put on hold. You are completely in the zone, letting the music help guide you across the dance floor. Let that negativity fuel you, not hinder you. There's another quote to go with this one: “Dance first, think later, it’s the natural order.”
“Dance for yourself, if someone understands good. If not, no matter. Go right on doing what interests you and do it until it stops interesting you.” - Lois Horst
When I tell people that they should try dance, the majority say they can’t dance because they have no rhythm. What people don’t realize is that dance is just like all other art forms. It’s not black and white. Some people see as beautiful what one person sees as ugly. Some people are going to love your work and others aren't. If you give it your all and are having a good time, it shows in your work. Even some of the best dancers and choreographers have days where no one understands their piece or likes it, but they continue to do what they love, anyway.
There you have it, my attempt at explaining dance and what it means. I'm not the best at putting my true thoughts down through writing, so here are two of my dance routines. Hopefully, this helps aid in explaining dance. If they don't help, oh well. Like I say in the article, not everyone will get it and that's totally OK.