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Ballet

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Ballet movement, in classical ballet, any of the formalized actions of a dancer that follow specific rules regarding the positions of the arms, feet, and body. Ballet choreography is based on combinations of these fundamental movements. Some movements, like the plié and battement, are training exercises designed to give strength and flexibility to the entire body while helping the dancer acquire perfect posture, or “placement,” with the weight lightly balanced over the centre of gravity and the legs turned out from the hip sockets. Other movements are steps in a ballet. These may be jumping or leaping steps (pas d’élévation), like the entrechat (a jump beginning and ending in the fifth position, during which the feet are rapidly crossed) or the jeté (a jump in which the weight is transferred from one foot to the other); or they may be turns (tours), such as the pirouette (a turn on one foot) and the tour en l’air (a complete single, double, or triple, turn in the air).

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Pointe

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Dancing "en pointe," or on pointe, is a major goal in a ballerina's dance life. Dancing on pointe, or your toes, requires tremendous strength of the legs and feet. Many ballet teachers have strict requirements for starting pointe work. Pointe is an advanced form of ballet that requires a different form of shoe.

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Jazz

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Jazz has become one of the most popular dance styles in recent years, mainly due to its popularity on television shows, movies, music videos and commercials. People enjoy watching jazz dancers, as the dancing is fun and energetic. Every jazz dancer interprets and executes moves and steps in their own way. This type of dancing is energetic and fun, consisting of unique moves, fancy footwork, big leaps and quick turns. To excel in jazz, dancers need a strong background in ballet, as it encourages grace and balance.

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Hip Hop

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Hip-hop dance refers to street dance styles primarily performed to hip-hop music or that have evolved as part of hip-hop culture. It includes a wide range of styles notably breaking, locking, and popping which were created in the 1970s and made popular by dance crews in the United States. The dance industry responded with a commercial, studio-based version of hip-hop—sometimes called new style—and a hip-hop influenced style of jazz dance called jazz-funk. Classically trained dancers developed these studio styles in order to create choreography from the hip-hop dances that were being performed on the street. Because of this development, hip-hop dance is practiced in both dance studios and outdoor spaces. Typically very loose or baggy clothing and sneakers are wore within this type of dance style.

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Modern

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Born in the early 20th century, modern dance is a dance style that centers on a dancer's own interpretations instead of structured steps, as in traditional ballet dancing. Modern dancers reject the limitations of classical ballet and favor movements derived from the expression of their inner feelings. During the 1900's, European dancers began rebelling against the rigid rules of classical ballet. Turning against the structured techniques, costumes and shoes of ballet, these dancers favored a more relaxed, free style of dancing. Modern dance pioneers often danced in bare feet and revealing costumes. Modern dance encourages dancers to use their emotions and moods to design their own steps and routines. It is not unusual for dancers to invent new steps for their routines, instead of following a structured code of technique, as in ballet. Another characteristic of modern dance in opposition to ballet is the deliberate use of gravity. Whereas classical ballet dancers strive to be light and airy on their feet, modern dancers often use their body weight to enhance movement.

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Tap

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Tap is an exciting form of dance in which dancers wear special shoes equipped with metal taps. Tap dancers use their feet like drums to create rhythmic patterns and timely beats. The term "tap dancing" is derived from the tapping sound produced when the small metal plates on the dancer's shoes touch a hard floor or surface.

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