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Consider how set can be used to communicate successfully the dance's ideal concept. Give an example from

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Introduction

Consider how set can be used to communicate successfully the dance's ideal concept. Give an example from "Still Life at the Penguin Caf�" and four other professional dance works When a dance piece is created, it is not just the choreography of the steps that needs to be considered. To make a successful piece, firstly a starting point needs to be found, this can be anything ranging from an emotion, an animal, or even someone's journey to work or school. When this has been decided upon, there are five main areas that need to be concentrated on. These are; costume, music, set, lighting and choreography. These different fields of the dance cannot be considered separate, nor is there a rank of importance; all five areas need to be created together. They compliment each other, and grow together to form the piece. In this essay I am going to focus on the importance of just one of these factors, the set. Using examples from professional dance works I am going to discuss how the set successfully communicates the dance's ideal concept. The first dance work I am going to use as an example, is from "Still Life at the Penguin Caf�" choreographed by David Bintley and designed by Hayden Griffin. ...read more.

Middle

I am now going to discuss the piece "Stampede" choreographed by Richard Alston and Designed by Fotini Dimou. The set for this piece was very simple but communicated the feeling of the dance sufficiently. Up stage left, there was a mediaeval band. This consisted of a harp, two viols, some drums and other period instruments. The musicians sat in a semicircular pattern and provided the music for the piece from this position, adding interest to the piece as the audience was given another focus point on top of the dancers. It also communicated the time period in which the piece is set, in the mediaeval times, a dance would take place as a social event and the band would be present, so the piece reflects this. The only other dimension to this set was the backdrop. The top three quarters were just plain black but the bottom half had scenery made to look like a wall. The wall was yellow with sections of music score pasted on at random. I'm not quite sure of the meaning of this, but it is a point of interest in the dance, and an artistic compliment to the movement. ...read more.

Conclusion

Although this piece consists of many dances, there is only one set used throughout. The backcloth is painted to show a desolate landscape in the middle of nowhere. There is a dark, clear sky which seems to be the view from a cave. It gives the impression of a place in between life and death, a judgement on whether to go to heaven or hell. Within the view on the backdrop is a dark valley, it could represent "the valley of the shadow of death". The stage set is three bid stones at the back of the stage and some at the sides that the ghosts use to sit on and hide behind, the people also use them as recliners, they give two different levels to the stage, adding another dimension. But mostly, the stage is left free. This set is very effective, especially the painted backdrop, which really sets the scene. From looking at these examples of professional dance works, I have come to the conclusion that set can be used successfully to communicate the dances ideal concept by keeping it simple yet effective. A simple relevant set or a creative abstract background can enhance a pieces atmosphere, emotions, moods and feelings, as well as giving the piece added interest. A set can contribute a lot to a dance piece. ...read more.

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