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New German Dance Studies$
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Susan Manning and Lucia Ruprecht

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780252036767

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252036767.001.0001

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Engagements with the Past in Contemporary Dance

Engagements with the Past in Contemporary Dance

(p.217) 13. Engagements with the Past in Contemporary Dance
New German Dance Studies

Yvonne Hardt

University of Illinois Press

For a long time, what has been considered “avant-garde” embodied the “new” and was perceived as different from those dance forms considered traditional, historical, or marked by ethnic inheritance. This chapter traces how contemporary dance performances and dance historical writing have challenged these demarcations as one detects a remarkable trend toward evoking the past in contemporary dance. Numerous artists and festivals increasingly feature works that address the past, having discovered the potential for a self-reflexivity of dance in conversation with its history. From this larger group of artists, the chapter focuses on four contemporary European choreographers: Jér ô me Bel, Xavier Le Roy, Eszter Salamon, and Martin Nachbar to discuss what working with the past in contemporary performance can entail. These choreographers expose different modes of taking up the past; however, they all engage a concept of history understood as a construction based on the needs of the present.

Keywords:   dance performances, dance historical writing, modern dance, choreographers, Jér ô me Bel, Xavier Le Roy, Eszter Salamon, Martin Nachbar

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