Aspects of Baroque Style (XI) – Baroque Dance in France

In baroque era, King Louis XIV was effective on new dance forms in France. He was  known as “The Sun King” because he performed a role as a ballet  when he was 14 years old which was the “Rising Sun”.

Two new dance forms acquired in the period; social and theatrical dances. First one is for the ballroom and second one is for the entertainments of courts. The two dance forms are close each other as style and steps. In 1661, Louis XIV created the Academie Royal de Danse for the development of the new dance forms.

In court balls, no one has courage to leave the ball before the king leaves the dancing. A usual and formal dancing began with couples and they show the dancing pattern for the evening. There are important dance patterns that couples performed who belong to a high social grade. It was named as danses a deux. It included many different parts such as; Menuet, Sarabande, Gigue, Allemande, Chaconne, etc. The ball evening ended with a dance from England, which came to France by dance masters like Andre Lorin. Other countries’ courts preferred to perform social dances from France, and they invited French dance masters to learn these dance forms.

The dance forms which was found and progressed by King Louis XIV were lasted until the eighteenth century. Mostly in court events, aristocrats used the social dance forms but noble dances which performed by professional dancers started to take more attention. In contrast, theatrical dance form has developed, it still used in ballet today.

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