Even the best of dances existing today can be improved. This is our mission! A restoration of dance is an important element to building a “Zion vision”!
Those that have kept the covenants and served their God, if they wish to exercise themselves in any way to rest their minds and tire their bodies, go and enjoy yourselves in the dance, and let God be in all your thoughts in this as in all other things, and he will bless you. (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 242)
The following are some basic principles that can be used to analyze specific dances.
- Dance is an expression of emotion. It is driven by the music. With every dance ask the question: What is the emotion behind this dance? Is it refined? Is it confrontational? Is it romantic? Is it carefree? Is it boisterous? Is it noble? Is it dignified?
- The female part should be feminine but no sexual overtones
- The male part should be masculine.
- Each dance should have purpose and direction.
No dance is perfect. In fact, celestial dance may not exist in our culture today. What we have is at best terrestrial. We should critically analyze every dance. What is good? What is bad? How can it be improved?
What would it look like if all of our dances were carefully selected to give glory to God?
What if we ensured that only pure and righteous emotion was expressed?
If you wish to dance, dance; and you are just as much prepared for a prayer meeting after dancing as ever you were, if you are Saints. If you desire to ask God for anything, you are as well prepared to do so in the dance as in any other place, if you are Saints. (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 243)
If thou art merry, praise the Lord with singing, with music, with dancing, and with a prayer of praise and thanksgiving. (Doctrine and Covenants 136:28)
“Dancing. A natural sign of rejoicing, and as such frequently formed part of religious ceremonies (Ex. 15:20; 32:19; Judg. 11:34; 2 Sam. 6:14–16; 1 Chr. 15:29). The dancing was often accompanied by a song with chorus, and instrumental music (Ps. 68:25; 149:3; 150:4).” (Bible Dictionary)
General statements regarding dancing (Coming!)
Dancing in LDS Temples (Coming!)
“Old Dominion Dance” index: http://dominiondance.com/dances/
Dominion Dance “Music Suggestions”: http://dominiondance.com/music-suggestions/
- The “Virginia Reel”
- Cotton Eye Joe
- English Country Dance
- The Hole in the Wall: http://dominiondance.com/dance-terms-and-tips/hole-in-the-wall/
- The Indian Queen
- Scottish Country Dancing (Hornpipes)
“Pemberley Players” Music CDs: http://www.fainmusic.co.uk/pandp.html
Greek Folk Dances
“The Cosmic Ring-Dance of the Angels” by Frederick M. Huchel