Dance has existed since the dawn of human civilization, bridging the gap within the community and crossed all boundaries. Expressing through movement to the rhythm of music every decade and century, dance styles have transformed, reformed, and innovated to become the most powerful expressive physical art.
Divanshi Gupta, Founder, of Ucanji shares 10 mind-boggling dance facts:
Dance in Cave Paintings: The earliest historical records show the origin of the dance in Cave Paintings in India dating back to 8,000 BCE. Even the 5300-year-old tomb paintings in Egypt pinpoint to the origin of ancient dances. As per archaeologists, dance originated between 5,000 to 9,000 years ago near modern Pakistan. Some earliest rock art forms suggested that 10,000 years ago, the Bushmen of Africa used to perform some trance-like dance to communicate with the spirit world.
The invention of the Moonwalk moves: Moonwalk makes you recall the name of late superstar Michael Jackson. He created the iconic Moonwalk moves which were different from the popular backslide dance movements. The King of Pop, first time performed this Moonwalk in his famous ‘Billie Jean’ song in 1983. Jackson and his dancers used to lean at a gravity-defying 45-degree angle with their special patented shoe design.
The 126 hours of Dance: Bandana Nepal has the Guinness World Record for the longest dancing marathon, lasting 126 hours. A Nepali dancer, she participated in the dance marathon from November 23-28, 2018.
Prohibition on Waltz: In the 18th century, Waltz was considered a scandalous form of dancing which led to its banning. The reason was the closeness between the dance partners that made Waltz indecent. In European countries, the maximum dancing time was 10 minutes. Once Napolean Bonaparte won Austria in 1815, allies of European states celebrated the victory by Waltzing.
After that moment, Waltz was no more a scandalous dance. It gained popularity across the globe.
The Dancing Plague of 1518: In 1518, the town of Strasbourg (France) witnessed a dance mania that lasted a month and killed dozens of people. The reason behind continuous and uncontrolled dancing was more than just dancing spirits and energy. It is still a mystery waiting to be solved. Dancing mania caused uncontrolled movements, exhaustion, and heart attack and people did not stop until they collapsed. At least 400-500 people joined together for the dance to death.
Stick Dance or the Dance of Slaves: Stick dance was developed by African-Americans on American plantations during the slavery era. Stick dance was a type of military drill where the stick was used in dance as a disguised weapon. The dance was a practice session to fight against the plantation owners. It was an element of resistance. Dancers would clap in rhythm, and sing in a call-and-response style where other caller led the crowd.
Tupac Shakur: Before becoming a full-time rapper and hip-hop artist, Tupac Shakur was a ballet dancer. He attended Baltimore School for the Arts, where he took ballet, poetry, jazz and acting classes. He played the role of Mouse King in the Nutcracker play where he had to do abrasque moves.
The 107-years Young dancer: Eileen Kramar is a 107-year-young dancer from Australia. She bans the word old. Her iconic dancing career started when she was 22 years. She has been leading an iconic dance career in Sydney. Her lifelong wish is to create new, learn new and be new.
Greeks started Broadway Dance: Broadway dance is a dance within the theatre. Broadway Dance is a popular way to capture audiences at the grand venues of New York, but it was started by Greeks a long time back. Broadway dance got its name from Broadway, the main street in New York City.
The Largest Dance Class Record: Athena – The national Israeli council for the advancement of women’s sports holds the Guinness World Record title for holding the world’s largest dance class in the year 2010. There were almost 10 thousand participants in the Athena Event that happened in Tel Aviv, Israel. The participants were all women.