The use of country music as a basis for choreography



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Purpose: It was the purpose of this study to examine selected aspects of country music as a basis for choreography. The intent of design was to express the choreographer’s felt meanings of selected phenomena that are reflected by country music. Methods: The researcher’s findings revealed five categories of country music on which the researcher based an extended dance work: the honky tonk at the beginning and ending of an evening, the cosmic cowboy, and the fundamentalist Christian roots of the fans of country music. The choreographic process involved: researching literature on the subject, observing, experiencing, internalizing and then externalizing through manipulating movement materials in terms of time, space, and energy. The process resulted in a dance form. In producing the dance the choreographer (1) identified core ideas for each section, (2) selected the dancers and props, (3) selected the musical accompaniment, (4) developed the choreography, (5) designed the costumes, (6) designed the lighting, and (7) titled the work. Summary and Evaluation: The choreographer gained a greater understanding and appreciation of country music and its roots. In producing the dance, the choreographer experienced many od the problems and rewards that occur in the creative process. An important consideration in using country music as a basis for choreography in a stylized expression of an unaffected folk form. The choreographer accomplished the structuring of an extended dance work that provided diversion, relaxation, enjoyment, emotional release, the perception of “what life feels like� and the intensity of experience not found in modern urban life. It was the choreographer’s hope that the dance form emerging from this study gave viewers some of the same perceptions and satisfactions.



Choreography., Country music., themes of country music