Throughout the history of performance, developments in music and dance have been inseparable. From the theatrical pagan festivals of the Ancient Greeks, to the extravagant Masques of the 17th century European courts; from the great collaborations between Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa in Imperial Russia, to the extraordinary artistic output of the Ballet Russes and their collaborators, much of our most famous and beloved music was originally composed for dance.
What makes music good to dance to? Which composers create the best music for dance? Find out what our expert composers think in the videos below. Perhaps you might get some ideas for your own composition for dance!
Find out more…
- Watch the LPO perform Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring on Marquee TV
- On YouTube, you can find lots of recordings of and clips from Tchaikovsky’s famous ballets: The Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty, and Swan Lake
- Hear the LPO performing extracts from Swan Lake, recorded at the Royal Festival Hall in 2021, and listen LPO Conductor Emeritus Vladimir Jurowski and former Royal Ballet Principal dancer Zenaida Yanowsky discuss the piece here
- Read about the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica and their music
- Find out more about Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
Find out more…
- Hear the LPO perform Stravinsky’s The Firebird in this recording, available on Spotify and Apple Music.
- Listen to the score for Stravinsky’s ‘Agon,‘ and find out more about George Balanchine’s ballet
- You can hear the LPO performing Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring on Marquee TV, and there are a number of other recordings available on YouTube. You can read about ‘Rodeo’ here and listen to that, and Billy the Kid, on YouTube.
- Find out more about Rambert Dance Company and The Comedy of Change
Mark Bowden on Igor Stravinsky
Both Shirley and Mark highlighted Igor Stravinsky as one of the greatest composers for dance of all time. To hear more about why his music has been so powerful and influential for dancers, hear Mark share his insights into what makes Stravinsky so unique.