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Modern Dancers
(Barry Goyette, Creative Commons)

Modern Dance

During the 20th century, modern dance made its appearance, in reaction to highly regulated forms, such as ballet. At its beginnings, it enjoyed no particular code of movements and its sole goal was innovation on all levels. Modern dance choreographers must define their own rules and often execute their own creations.

The pioneers of modern dance made their entrance on the stage at the very beginning of the 20th century: Isadora Duncan found her inspiration in Greek culture; Ruth Saint Denis sought hers in the dances of India and Egypt; while Mary Wigman was stimulated by masks and Africa.

The trend emerged more strongly in the United States, during the 30's, supported by artists constantly in quest of experimentation. At first known as "barefoot ballet", being strongly opposed to the wearing of pointe shoes, modern dance continued to develop until it had become an ever more highly considered and well respected genre.

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