A case study exploring the contribution of jazz dance in one vocational ballet school

Mountain-Everroad, Thorey (2013). A case study exploring the contribution of jazz dance in one vocational ballet school. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.

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The purpose of this study was to explore the contribution of jazz dance in a vocational ballet school. My research design was an interpretive case study. In my role as Head of Jazz Dance at the case study school, and with the full support of the Artistic Director, I explain to parents of young auditionees that jazz dance complements classical ballet training. We emphasize the importance of versatility daily to our students, impressing on them the necessity of being able to meet the demands of today’s choreographers and the increasingly diverse repertoire in ballet companies.

Theoretically the study was informed by two concepts from the figurational or process theory of Norbert Elias, processual change and figurations of interdependence, and by my own experiences as dancer, teacher and choreographer. The qualitative research was in two parts. The first part contextualized the empirical study with an historical chapter to illustrate the development of jazz dance as a theatre art form. I utilized documents and transcripts of interviews with three jazz dance exponents/performers. In the second part I used four semistructured interviews and fifty eight questionnaire responses to explore the perceptions of key stakeholders on the place of jazz dance in elite vocational ballet training. The questionnaire comprised open-ended questions and the data were analysed thematically. The data and the testimony indicated that there is a broad awareness of the significant contribution that jazz dance makes towards enhancing the career possibilities of ballet dancers in training.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Phil.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Phil.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
School or Department: School of Education
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: L Education > LC Special aspects of education
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/4216


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