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The Value of Dance

If you grew up in the world of dance as I did, or, if you dance on a regular basis, or if you have a child in dance classes, then you know that dance provides many things besides just learning to move. What you learn helps you grow as a human being in many ways, including:

  • Music Knowledge – Dancers learn music theory, application and appreciation.

  • Fitness – the discipline of habituating good eating and exercise habits in order to have a healthy, fit body for your art and yourself.

  • Athletics – Dance is first and foremost a sport and the dancer an athlete. She learns to master and control her body’s movement and stillness.

  • Expression and Passion – Dancers, like all performing artists, learn personal expression, which creates psychological and spiritual well-being. The best dancers are usually loving, passionate people.

  • Creativity – Dancers learn to make costumes, choreography dances, interpret music creatively, all of which develops the creative mind, an essential part of problem-solving.

  • A sense of community – dancers learn to work in co-operation with each other in ensemble dances and theatrical productions and, in doing so, develop a sense of community.

  • Culture – Learning the history and culture of a dance style teaches an awareness of and appreciation for other cultures and humanity.

  • Character – Dancers have to practice and rehearse all the time in order to be good enough to perform. This – like dieting and exercise – takes tremendous discipline. They are always delaying or denying gratification, which develops character.

  • Broadens Identity – In the performing arts we step outside ourselves and become someone different whenever we perform. This is very healthy because we explore and enhance aspects of who we are beyond our “daily self”, social skills and ID. Donning different viewpoints/personalities allows us to see the world outside of ourselves. Because of this, we improve our relationships with other

While the fine arts allow us to be private and solitary, the performing arts allow us to be social and explore our humanitarian side. Like the military, the performing arts give us a sense of belonging and camaraderie that improves our relationship with others and ourselves. J

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