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  • Writer's pictureNatalia Braun, MSc

International Dance Day and Dance Festival 2020: Tribute

Dance brings people together, with a common language - dance. As a tribute to the International Dance Day 2020 on April 29th and the following Dance Festival in Switzerland May 15th - May 17th, my article Dancing Away Psychological Stress of Isolation was recorded in the annals of the history of (a bit different) celebration by the International Theatre Institute ITI and the World Organization for the Performing Arts. The International Theatre Institute ITI is the main partner for the performing arts of UNESCO. In 1982 the Dance Committee of ITI founded International Dance Day to be celebrated every year on the 29th April, the birthday of Jean-Georges Noverre (1727-1810), creator of modern ballet. The intention of this day is to celebrate dance as a common language across all political, cultural and ethnic barriers, and bring people together. No matter how physically distanced we have been recently, dance showed indeed the power of bringing people together even now, through its countless forms of expression.

The article particularly mentions virtual forms of practicing dance around the world during the pandemic, multifaceted positive impact of dance and refers to the research we did at the University of Derby, UK, on the influence of dance on embodied self-awareness and well-being.

The Dance Festival is held each year all over Switzerland during several days mid of May and presents an opportunity to discover dance and its different styles in theatres, cultural centres and public spaces. The majority of cities in Switzerland and a city in France contribute to the celebration of dance in its various forms. It brings the best of dance practices and innovations from around the world. This year, starting today, the celebration moved online. This is another example of creative adjustment. Quoting the words of the favourite song of Maya Angelou mentioned in my article, "and when you get the chance to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance".

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