The choreography of space: towards a socio-aesthetics of dance

Stanger, Arabella (2014) The choreography of space: towards a socio-aesthetics of dance. New Theatre Quarterly, 30 (1). pp. 72-90. ISSN 0266-464X

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Abstract

With its emphasis on the socially constructed and mobile nature of ‘space’, Henri Lefebvre's theory of spatial production presents rich possibilities for a sociocultural analysis of choreography. In this article Arabella Stanger uses an examination of social space and spatial aesthetics as a basis upon which to develop a socio-aesthetics of dance – an approach in which the societal contexts and the aesthetic forms of choreography are understood to be fundamentally interrelated. Borrowing from Lefebvre's The Production of Space (1974) and Maria Shevtsova's sociology of the theatre and performance, Stanger establishes the theoretical parameters and methodological steps of such an approach, and locates a short illustrative example in the socio-spatial formations of Aurora's Act III variation from Marius Petipa's The Sleeping Beauty (1890). Ultimately extending a bridge between formalist and contextualist strands of dance studies, the article argues for the use of a particular concept of space in understanding choreographic practice as social practice. Arabella Stanger is Lecturer in Dance at the University of Roehampton. Having trained in classical ballet, she completed her MA and PhD studies at Goldsmiths, University of London, and has published on the work of Merce Cunningham, Michael Clark, and William Forsythe.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: choreography space Henri Lefebvre ballet Marius Petipa
Schools and Departments: School of English > English
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology > HM0481 Theory. Method. Relations to other subjects
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN2000 Dramatic representation. The Theater
Depositing User: Arabella Stanger
Date Deposited: 14 Aug 2017 08:30
Last Modified: 14 Aug 2017 08:30
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/69742
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