Lyrical/Contemporary

Lyrical dance is a fusion of ballet with jazz and contemporary dance techniques.

Lyrical dance style has its primary basis in ballet, combining the many technical elements of classical ballet with the freedom and airier aspects of jazz, contemporary and modern dance. It is typically considered a sub-category of jazz and/or contemporary dance, the latter itself being an emerging category. Lyrical dance is expressive, simultaneously subtle and dynamic, focused on conveying musicality and emotion through movement. It is a combination of intricate, highly technical, and pedestrian/naturalistic moves. It is commonly set to popular music with vocals as well as rich are (indeed, often) emphasized over the song's rhythm, but because of the definition of the word lyrical: having a poetic, expressive quality; musical; characterized by or expressing spontaneous, direct feeling; expressing deep personal emotions or observation; highly rhapsodic or enthusiastic. Choreography can be gripping and exquisitely delicate, at the same time. That a song's lyrics are a driving force and key inspiration for the movement accounts for why a sizeable number of dancers are unaware of how the style's name was derived, erroneously thinking it came from the word "lyrics".

The emergent lyrical style has a relatively recent history and a genesis based on the coming together of ballet with rock/folk/pop/alternative music and a variety of jazz dance styles and modern dance. Dancer, teacher and choreographer Suzi Taylor, who holds regular class at Steps on Broadway in New York City is considered by many to be an early mother of lyrical dance, having emphasized a unique brand of musicality and expressiveness which influenced many future teachers and choreographers.

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