August 2017 | Dance History Quiz

Fun facts for teachers & students

1 According to Duane Lee Holland Jr., the first professor of hip-hop at the Boston Conservatory at Berklee, what are the five styles of hip-hop dance?

a. Krumping, locking, waving, tutting, and top rock
b. Popping, locking, breaking, hip-hop, and house
c. Alternative, East Coast, urban, pop, and rockin’
d. Gangsta, boogaloo, uprock, spinning, and jookin


2 This spring, American Ballet Theatre artist in residence Alexei Ratmansky resurrected Richard Strauss’ long-forgotten ballet Whipped Cream, a bit of whimsy about a Viennese pastry shop. The 2017 ballet’s innocent-with-an-edge sets and costumes were designed by artist Mark Ryden, whose painting of a girl in a blond bob and “red” dress inspired what pop culture flashpoint?

a. The Hunger Games
b. Sia’s “Chandelier” video
c. Lady Gaga’s meat dress
d. La La Land

3 True or false: In the famous “Singin’ in the Rain” dance that appears in the movie of the same name, Gene Kelly’s tap sounds were dubbed by assistants tapping in buckets of water.

a. True
b. False

4 Match the stage names of these famous dancers (lowercase letters) to their real names (capital letters):

a. Melissa Hayden
b. Suzanne Farrell
c. Ninette de Valois
d. Allegra Kent

A. Edris Stannus
B. Mildred Herman
C. Iris Margo Cohen
D. Roberta Sue Ficker

5 This year marks the 30th anniversary of Dirty Dancing, the beloved movie about a teenage girl who learns to love (and do a mean mambo) at a fading Catskills resort during the summer of ’63. Unfortunately, during this year’s celebration, fans won’t be able to recreate one of the movie’s most iconic scenes—when Baby (Jennifer Grey) and Johnny (Patrick Swayze) practice an overhead lift—in Virginia’s Mountain Lake, where the scene was filmed. Why not?

a. Swimming is prohibited due to a toxic waste spill.
b. Grey, who now owns the property, prohibits visitors.
c. The lake is a designated historical site.
d. The lake has gone dry.

6 Who was the first professional dancer to perform at the White House?

a. Martha Graham
b. Loie Fuller
c. Martha Hill
d. Doris Humphrey

7 Fashion designer Bradon McDonald, a former member of the Mark Morris Dance Group, is the go-to costumer for choreographer Jessica Lang. Many, though, know McDonald best from his appearance on what popular reality TV show?

a. Survivor
b. So You Think You Can Dance
c. Project Runway
d. Shark Tank

8 Two TV show judges got their start as part of the Fly Girls hip-hop dance crew on the irreverent sketch comedy show In Living Color. One is World of Dance creator/judge and megastar Jennifer Lopez. Who is the other?

a. Carrie Ann Inaba
b. Julianne Hough
c. Melanie “Mel B” Brown
d. Gwen Stefani