February 2016 | Dance History Quiz

dance-hqFun facts for teachers and students.

1 Who was the first full-time dance critic to write for a major American publication?


a. John Martin, who wrote for the New York Times for 35 years.
b. Arlene Croce, former dance writer for the New Yorker, who ignited a controversy in 1994 by refusing to see a Bill T. Jones work that she derided as “victim art.”
c. Deborah Jowitt, who began writing for the Village Voice in 1967 and won a Bessie in 1985 for her dance criticism.
d. William F. Buckley Jr., conservative author, commentator, and founder of the National Review, who secretly loved dance and was hired to write criticism under the name Legg Warmers III for the little-known journal Free Market Fouettés.

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2 Who developed and articulated principles arguing for the reform of ballet that most believe led to a revolution of the form?


a. Sergei Diaghilev
b. George Balachine
c. Galina Ulinova
d. Mikhail Fokine

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3 Which would you not likely see in a Bournonville ballet?



a. Elaborate sets, lighting, or costumes.
b. Buoyant, interconnected jumps that flow one into another.
c. A dancer running or walking to an upstage corner, preparing, and then doing a series of virtuoso steps on the diagonal.
d. Subtle positioning of the head and neck.

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4 Which famous choreographer learned choreographic skills while in the U.S. Army?



a. Busby Berkeley
b. Paul Taylor
c. Travis Wall
d. Agnes de Mille

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5 Which dance icon recently marked his/her 95th birthday with a celebration that included biographical-documentary screenings in Colombia and South Korea, restagings of his/her works in Israel and France, and a dance done by participants in 46 nations?


a. Twyla Tharp
b. Merce Cunningham
c. Roland Petit
d. Anna Halprin

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6 Which of these tap dance acts is not made up of actual siblings?



a. The Astaires
b. The Nicholas Brothers
c. The Condos Brothers
d. The Four Step Brothers

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7 When was ballet introduced in Japan?



a. In the 17th century, when Japanese farmers devised a codified set of dances almost identical to what was concurrently evolving in France; the only significant differences were the costumes and music.
b. Around the beginning of the 20th century, when, in response to the Russian Revolution, Russian ballet dancers emigrated to other countries, including Japan.
c. In 1830, when Emperor Ayahito saw Fanny Elssler dance in Berlin and was so entranced that he hired Elssler’s teachers to start a school in Japan.
d. On April 29, 1982, the first International Dance Day, when the Japan Arts Council sent out a decree that read, “Ballet. Bring it on.”

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