A Century of Dance: A Hundred Years of Musical Movement, from Waltz to Hip Hop

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9780815411338: A Century of Dance: A Hundred Years of Musical Movement, from Waltz to Hip Hop
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The last hundred years have seen dance become an increasingly integral element of popular culture. From ballroom dancing to breakdancing, A Century of Dance offers an intimate, engaging exploration of the choreographers, dancers, and impressarios, as well as the dance steps and crazes, that have transfixed the public and transformed both art and leisure. Here are the sultry gyrations of Josephine Baker; the phenomenal tap work of the Nicholas Brothers; the innovative Hollywood grace of Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly; the Broadway hi-jinx of Bob Fosse; and much more.

With 360 stunning color and black-and-white photographs and entries on every significant personality and trend in dance since 1900, A Century of Dance is an unparalleled guide to the transcendent world of twentieth century popular dance.

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About the Author:

Ian Driver has written extensively on the performing arts. His other books include London Traditions. He lives in London, England.

From Publishers Weekly:

Featuring a colorful if lightweight survey of the last 100 years of social dance, Driver, a London-based arts writer, describes how an era is reflected in its social dances--because dance is interwoven into ordinary people's daily lives as "social ritual, leisure activity, entertainment." Driver credits technological advances--records, television and movies--with changing dance styles and fueling fads nationwide. Beginning with the turn-of-the-century waltz, which, he says, "ruled the dancehalls" at the time, (and the first social dance to turn dancing couples face-to-face), Driver traces how popular music and contemporary style melded into dances mirroring the social changes of the century. Ragtime, vaudeville, tap, Broadway, rock 'n' roll, the disco-hustle craze and the Latin American influence (spread by Xavier Cugat and Ricky Martin, among others) are brought to life with 360 energetic color and b&w photographs of performers and dance posters, eye-catching sidebars ("The Great Dance Bands," "Bob Fosse") and other graphics. On the other hand, the author's commentary is fairly superficial (Savion Glover's mother realized early on that "he had an unusually advanced sense of rhythm"), and Driver's accuracy is sometimes suspect (he incorrectly places Madonna dancing "briefly" with the Paul Taylor Company). From the turkey trot to hip-hop, this volume gives a vivid visual record of all the century's dance crazes.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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