Ruth St. Denis: The Pioneer Of Modern Dance

explanatory Essay
745 words
745 words

Often called the “Pioneer of Modern Dance”, Ruth St. Denis was one of the first modern dancers in American History. Ruth St. Denis along with Ted Shawn, Isadora Duncan, Martha Graham, and Doris Humphrey formed and molded modern dance in America. As a child, she was never thought of dance being a career for her. All that changed when she went to her first recital of Genevieve Stebbins; she was astonished by the true beauty of dance. This was the breakthrough that started her career. St. Denis was the first to choreograph a piece with no music whatsoever. Throughout her long life, of 90 years, she made many contributions to the modern dance we have today.
Ruth St. Denis was born January 20th, 1877 in Newark, New Jersey on a small farm. She was raised by a physician mother and inventor father. Her family and friends and fellow peers gave her a lot of interesting nicknames such as: Little Ruthie Denis, Miss Ruth, and Ruth Saint Denis. As soon as she turned ten she was dancing and performing like crazy. She began taking part in any kind of play or dance related performance. Her career started to take off as she started dancing and acting even as a teenager .She was inspired while learning about Hindu philosophy and art. Her style of dance, contemporary choreography, was ground-breaking. She began to study social dance in Somerville, this was her first formal dance training. She started at Belasco Dance Company until 1905. Starting her solo career, the first piece she choreographed was The Rahda. This piece was inspired by oriental culture and spiritual expression. Many of her pieces were inspired by oriental culture, music visualization, and synchoric orchestra.
She had many notable pieces of choreography but there are a couple that ...

... middle of paper ... used as communication between body and soul, to express what is too deep to find for words.” Dance is more of the body speaking things that the mind can’t express fully. Dance is the silent communication that can only be spoken through actions and never spoken through words.

Analysis of Work and Influences
I am truly inspired by Ruth St. Denis’ choreography and styles of dance. I really enjoy the different genres such as Indian rituals and oriental religion. Learning about her really gave me a different perspective on modern dance and how important it is. If it weren’t for all the famous modern dancers I’ve learned about, modern dance wouldn’t be the same. I really admire all the advances she made throughout her life, I applaud her for never giving up. Ruth St. Denis was very fortunate to live 90 long years. Her legacy still lives on today, in modern dance.

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that ruth st. denis was one of the first modern dancers in american history. she was astonished by the beauty of dance when she went to her first recital of genevieve stebbins.
  • Explains that ruth st. denis was born in newark, new jersey on a small farm. she was inspired by hindu philosophy and art.
  • Explains that the rahda, incense, cobra, nautch, and yogi were the most grand pieces of her choreography.
  • Explains that ruth st. denis' dance style was contemporary dance with an oriental twist, influenced by indian, japanese, and hindu rituals.
  • Explains that ruth st. denis was a major contributor to modern dance. ted shawn fell in love with her and opened denishawn dance school.
  • Opines that they are inspired by ruth st. denis' choreography and styles of dance.
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