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Traditional Chinese Dance

By Author: Sherry Roberts
Total Articles: 153

In China, dance has different variations as a form of art that consists of both modern day and traditional dance types. The different dances include folk dance, performances, and the ballet. The common events in which dances feature are public celebrations, rituals, and other major ceremonies. The different ethnic groups in China have their folk dances, making them diverse. The traditional dances in China have roots in the performances during the ritual and the imperial court. The common traditional dances in history are the Dragon dance and the Lion dance (Dils & Albright, 2001). The lion dance dates back to the Tang Dynasty thought there have been several changes in the modern era. In the traditional dances, many dancers assumed the nature of animal and mythical beasts in their dressing codes. Most of the traditional dances had specific meanings to the Chinese Culture. For instance, the dragon dance was a form of ritual to appease the spirit of rain during draught spells. Others like the baixi type had the performers dressed as green dragon playing the flute in which it was symbolic for fish turning into a dragon. On the other hand, the Japanese traditional dance comprised of two major types; Odori and Mai. The Odori dance had more focus on the male sentiments and was a result of the kabuki drama. The Mai traditional dance was mostly in the Japanese rooms and not on the stage (Dils & Albright, 2001). There are significant differences between the traditional dances in China and that of Japan. The Essay provides a discussion of the differences by examining their distinguishing characteristics.
Purpose of the dance
The ancient Chinese dance was a form of art to accord respect to Heaven, and the divine, appreciate the universe and life, as well as praising kindness and virtue. Thus, the traditional dances had specific roles in the life of the Chinese people. The Chine traditional dance had a lot of emphasis on the spirit. The dances took the form of half physical and half in the spirit realm. They had much emphasis on the human surface and also on the spirited subject. The main goal was to concentrate on its allure and the hidden meanings. The dances are about the concern that Chinese culture is semi-divine. Every dance and dancer have a peculiar allure making them different in powerful attraction and fascination. On the other hand, the Japanese traditional dances had some differences in their consideration of the spirits. The Noh Mai dances were mostly for women and dressed up as a ghost of a noble woman, or a spirit. Thus, there was no much connection with the dance and the spirits apart from the basic dressing. In comparison to the Chinese dances, nearly half of their emphasis was on the spirits (Hendry, 2002). For the Chinese dancers to reflect the spiritual realm in their performances, they require to have good mental cultivation for the spirits to lead their movements. Thus, adequate preparation was mandatory, and a mastery of the techniques used.
Most of the traditional Chinese dances play a significant role in the society. For instance, the dragon has a fierce looking head that symbolizes dignity, wisdom, and power. The dragon wishes to bring prosperity to the people. The dragon dance is a folk dance having many dancers and acrobatic figures. The societies in China have annual celebrations for the dragon dance in which people interact. It shows the significance of the dance to the society. Other dances like the Lion dance are also important for the society as one who guards is against evil spirits. Though the lion dance has two dancers, it has a lot of significant to the Chinese people. Many other dances have important roles in the society.

Alexandra B. Bonds (2008) Beijing Opera Costumes: The Visual Communication of Character and Culture, University of Hawaii Press. ISBN 0824829565, 9780824829568
Dils A., & Albright C. (2001) Moving History/Dancing Cultures: A Dance History Reader, Wesleyan University Press, 2001. ISBN 0819564133, 9780819564139

Sherry Roberts is the author of this paper. A senior editor at Melda Research in 24 hour college papers services. If you need a similar paper you can place your order for a custom research paper from custom nursing essay services.

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