Accompaniment: the sound that you hear during the dance, percussion, live music, recorded music etc.
Accumulation: when a dancer begins a series of movements and the others join in until they all dance in unison. (When numbers represent different actions) 1, 12, 123, 1234, 12345
Actions: what a dancer does e.g. leap, spin, fall, turn, jump
Act and React: one action causes another movement reaction.
Alignment: the correct placement of body parts in relation to other body parts.
Analyse: examine and explain a dance work in detail.
Appreciate: show knowledge and understanding of your own and others’ dances and of dance in general.
Balance: a steady or ‘held’ position
Canon: when movements overlap in time, usually one dancer starts the sequence and another dancer starts a few seconds later. Can often look like a ‘Mexican wave’.
Chance: a method of choreography in which dance material is determined or manipulated by using a random method, for example throwing dice.
Choreography: the art of creating dance.
Choreographic Devices: using different methods to repeat, develop and vary the material.
Climax: the most important or significant moment of the dance, which usually happens near the end.
Contact work: when dancers touch, lean lift or support each other.
Contrast: shapes, movements, or ideas which are very different from each other.
Counterpoint: when two or more dancers perform different phrase at the same time.
Counter balance: two or more dancer pulling equal weight away from each other.
Counter tension: two or more dancers pushing equal weight towards each other.
Cyclic: something which has a circular feeling, and which ultimately comes back to its own beginning.
Direction: the pathway of movement.
Dynamics: the ‘how’ or ‘quality’ of movement.
Elevation: the action of ‘going up’ without support, such as in a jump.
Extension: lengthening one or more muscles or limbs.
Fall: A collapse: a controlled, successive giving-in which happens over the centre of gravity and tends not to rebound
An off-balance fall: the centre of gravity shifts off centre, until falling is unavoidable as the pull of gravity takes over.
Flexibility: the range of movement at a joint.
Formations: the shapes or patterns created by a group of dancers.
Flocking: A type of movement improvisation in which students mirror or shadow each other’s movement in groups. Often uses a diamond formation. Students follow the movements of a leader and share leadership throughout the group.
Gestures: actions or movements of a body part that is not weight bearing. Also everyday movements (e.g. waving goodbye, folding arms, pointing fingers, raising eyebrows)
Highlights: moments in the dance that draw attention.
Improvise: to explore and create movements without planning.
Isolation: moving a part of the body independently, such as a shoulder shrug.
Level: distance from the ground, for example low, medium or high.
Motif: actions in a sequence that encapsulate an idea
Multidirectional: moving in several directions.
Musicality: the ability to pick out the unique qualities of the accompaniment and make them evident through movement.
Mirroring: Reflecting the movements of another person as if they are a mirror image (facing each other)
Narrative: a dance that tells a story.
Over under round and through: a task to encourage children to consider the pathways they take with other dancers in space. E.g. can you move around/over/under or through another dancer or the shape they make.
Pathways: where dancers move, in the air or on the floor. They can be curved or linear.
Perform: prepare and dance a piece to an audience.
Phrase: a sequence of linked movements.
Posture: body position.
Projection: when a dancer gives out appropriate energy to connect with an audience and draw them into the performance.
Props: portable objects that are used in a dance.
Relationships: the ‘with what’ or ‘whom’ of movement. How dancers dance together.
Response to text: hearing words or sentences and interpreting them with movement.
Repetition: performing the same action or phrase again.
Rhythm: repeated patterns of movement or sound.
Sagittal: A plane in space. Wheel like shape.
Space: the ‘where’ of movement.
Spotlight Performance: Groups perform one at a time. When a group starts a performance as if a spotlight has come up on them, and then the next group performs, and the next. There is no break for applause between performances.
Starting and finishing positions: still images to indicate the start or end of a dance piece.
Stillness: pausing or stopping actions.
Style: characteristic features of a dance work of choreographers work that enable it to be recognised as belonging to that particular group.
Symmetric: the same on both sides or an equal balance of parts.
Travel: to move from one point in space to another.
Technique: a specific way of moving according to particular rules and conventions.
Transitions: links between dance phrases or sections.
Turning: moving around an axis, a whole-body rotation or to change the way the body faces.
Unison: Two or more people performing the same movement at the same time.