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Choreography Research Project

This Research Guide is intended to help Dance 260 students succeed on their term research project.

Choreography Research Project

Shen Wei's The Rite of Spring

Choreographer Research Project

Choose a choreographer to research. Learn as much as you can through reading and watching videos. Use the following sources. 

  • 2 books (if possible)

  • 2 periodicals

  • 2 dance reviews

  • 3-5 videos of choreographic works. One of these will be the focus of your paper.

  • All of your resources will be cited properly and included in your paper.

Your paper will address the following four aspects of your choreographer’s work.


1. The choreographer's body of work (minimum 200 words) What kind of dances do they make? Are they abstract or narrative? Are they primarily pedestrian movement, or highly stylized, gestural, or virtuosic? Is there a high production value? Do they use props and sets? Do they make dances that address socio political  or environmental issues? What makes them distinctive from other choreographers? These are just some questions to get you thinking 

2. Choreographic devices and structure (minimum 200 words) Choose a dance that is at least 8 minutes in length and describe the structure of the dance. How does it begin, develop, and end? Does it have recognizable sections? Is it narrative or abstract? Does the choreographer use unison, ground bass, antiphonal, and counterpoint? If so, how?

3. Time, Space, Energy/Quality/Force (minimum 200 words) by your choreographer. How does the choreographer use time, space, and energy/quality/force? You can explore this aspect by describing two or three signature phrases. 

4. Choreography in Context (minimum 200 words) What was happening in the world at the time the piece was created? If knowable, what was happening personally in the life of the choreographer? Where was the piece created? In a desert, New York City, in residence in the countryside?

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