Cover image for The Oxford dictionary of dance
The Oxford dictionary of dance
Craine, Debra.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Oxford [England] ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2000.
Physical Description:
vi, 527 pages ; 25 cm
Subject Term:
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV1585 .C78 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material
GV1585 .C78 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating
GV1585 .C78 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material
GV1585 .C78 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
GV1585 .C78 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material

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Over the last twenty years the boundaries of dance have been radically redrawn. There has been an explosion of new activity within traditional forms like ballet, a stream of new dance languages invented by fresh generations of choreographers, and there is a growing appreciation in the West ofdance forms from the rest of the world. Fans today are likely to attend performances in classical ballet, Spanish flamenco, Indian Bharata Natyam, Japanese Butoh, jazz, modern and post-modern dance. In classical ballet they may see companies as varied as the New York City Ballet, Bolshoi, or ParisOpera. In modern dance they may see work that stems from the Graham or the Cunningham schools of movement; while in post-modern dance they may be watching choreographers who mix influences as varied as folk dance, T'ai Chi, Balanchine, and Mary Wigman, or who may be practitioners of Eurocrash,minimalism, contact improvisation or release. This new dictionary by two leading and authoritative writers on dance will provide the information necessary for dance fans to navigate the diverse modern dance scene. With an emphasis on performance the dance we see in theatres today - readers will find both fact and analysis on a wide range ofsubjects from dancers and choreographers to dance styles and technical terms.

Author Notes

Debra Craine is the deputy arts editor and chief dance critic for The Times. She has acted as an advisor and contributor to the International Dictionary of Ballet (St James Press). Judith Mackrell is the dance critic for The Guardian. She is a regular writer and broadcaster on dance.

Reviews 4

Booklist Review

A lot has happened on- and offstage since the first edition of The Oxford Dictionary of Dance (2000) was published. As the world has grown smaller with advances in electronic communication, the world of theatrical dance has grown larger, absorbing new dance forms like hip-hop, supporting new research on the historical canon of classical ballet, and cultivating the convergence of diverse dance traditions. The authors, dance critics, respectively, of the Times and the Guardian, also point to the emergence of the Internet as a resource for dance and note that it is possible to see an astonishing range of performance and practice online. Accordingly, many of the entries in this new edition are enhanced by recommended websites, links to which may be found on the companion site, at These include dance-company websites as well as those of individual dancers, choreographers, composers, and organizations. As in the first edition, the conciseness of the entries results in the broad coverage of a variety of topics. Many of the entries have been revised and updated, and some 150 new entries have been added, half of them biographical and half on new dance works and forms. Bibliographies are not included with individual entries, but autobiographies and biographies are often noted. At the end of the book are a selected general bibliography, a list of periodicals, a list of biographies and autobiographies, and a selected list of websites. Although performing-arts collections will certainly want to add this updated edition, libraries with more general reference as well as circulating collections should consider it as well.--Mulac, Carolyn Copyright 2010 Booklist

Library Journal Review

Capturing the elusive art of dance in print is nearly impossible. Compiling a concise account of its names, places, organizations, and vocabulary is an art in itself and one that here is worthy of applause. Springing from The Oxford Dictionary of Ballet, this volume extends its coverage to include the many other kinds of dance performed around the world. The authorsÄCraine is deputy arts editor and chief dance critic for The Times (London) and Mackrell is dance critic for the GuardianÄhave choreographed a work that will be useful for students, dancers, and dance audiences alike. From the ballet Abraxas to Diaghilev dancer Nicholas Zvereff, more than 500 densely packed pages offer alphabetized dance facts and features that range through time and around the world. In contrast to earlier editions, individual entries here do not include bibliographies, but a substantial selected bibliography lists reference books, periodicals, and biographies and autobiographies. This new version of an old favorite is recommended for all reference collections.ÄCarolyn M. Mulac, Chicago P.L. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

School Library Journal Review

Adult/High School-This single-volume dictionary offers amazingly comprehensive coverage of the world of dance. Within its 25,000 entries, readers can find everything from a three-line explanation of "fado" to a three-page essay about Russia, the USSR, and ballet. Choreography, performers, composers, designers, companies, institutions, specific works and productions, terminology, films, and even dance shoes are all included. Longer essays address dance by country, historical period, and form. From classical ballet to hip-hop, fandango to Kabuki, Fonteyn to Fosse-they're all here. Dance dictionaries and/or encyclopedias with this breadth of coverage are hard to find. Although this dictionary has no illustrations, its all-inclusive format makes it an excellent purchase for any high school library.-Becky Ferrall, Stonewall Jackson High School, Manassas, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

The first edition of this dictionary (CH, May'01, 38-4769) became a standard for students needing a quick lookup on dance topics. This second edition by Craine (chief dance critic, The Times) and Mackrell (dance critic, The Guardian) presents over 2,700 entries and includes updated information on individuals and companies, with additional entries on some of the latest developments in theater dance. The focus of this work remains theatrical; it includes dancers, choreographers, and works from the international theater. Anthropological dance is excluded. This edition features a companion Web site, with URLs hosted on an Oxford Web page, which takes users to a surprising range of useful online resources. The paperback version is quite a bargain for quality information in a small package. The online version of the dictionary, available through Oxford Reference Online (CH, Sep'02, 40-0005), is searchable as an individual entity or in conjunction with other resources, and contains stable, accurate links. Dance is a topic of great interest, and this subject dictionary would be an inexpensive, worthy addition for public and school library collections that lack the first edition and for all university or specialized libraries. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower- and upper-level undergraduates; general readers. C. W. Bruns California State University--Fullerton

Table of Contents

A-Z Dictionary of Dance
Selected Bibliography and Further Reading