Dance is a form of expression by which one shows his or her gratitude or emotions of fear. History reveals that there have been several types of dances originated by different civilizations. Stepping dance is one the oldest dance form of the historical dances. Stepping dance is a form of dance in which a dancer’s body is made to produce complex rhythms of sounds by stepping and constant movements of feet. Hands are also used during the stepping dance because the sound of clapping makes the rhythm more easy and consecutive. Stepping dance originated in the continent of Africa and later on influenced Irish dance. In this paper we shall discuss the history of stepping dance. The paper shall also juxtapose African step dance and Irish step dance. Moreover we shall also study the differences between African step dance and Irish step dance through video analysis.
Every civilization has customs and traditions depending upon the consequences of their existence and the factor affecting the living in a region. African step dancing is a part of traditions of Africa. African’s great period of existence is clearly based upon the tribal way of living. Dance played a major role in the tribal history of Africa. Dance had been more than a mere expression of gratitude on the birth of a baby or marriage. Dance had been employed as the expression of fear and alert when wild animals entered their tribes. African step dance has been solely originated by the Africans.
On the other hand the Irish step dance is greatly influenced by the African dance stepping. One can easily find the evidence of the influenced Irish dance if we study history of Irish dance briefly. Irish step dance had gone through a great number of transitions and shifting of the steps because of the invasion and migration that was experienced by Irish people. The dancers in the historical period or developmental period of the Irish dance introduced their most preferred types of dance and thus one can see a number of combinations of rhythmic structures in Irish step dance.
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