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Jazz DanceA History of the Roots and Branches$
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Lindsay Guarino and Wendy Oliver

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813049298

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813049298.001.0001

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A Journey into the Heart of Jazz Dance

A Journey into the Heart of Jazz Dance

(p.279) 33 A Journey into the Heart of Jazz Dance
Jazz Dance

Jill Flanders Crosby

University Press of Florida

This article chronicles the research and artistic journey of the author, a dancer and scholar, as she developed a new understanding about the nature of jazz dance. Crosby spent a year in West Africa conducting fieldwork in order to understand the roots of jazz dance. Then it was on to New York City for a year, where she took many different jazz and jazz-related dance classes, including West African dance. Additionally, she often went swing dancing at clubs and performed with nationally known jazz dance choreographers all in search of a grounded jazz dance aesthetic. Following this initial research, the author studied authenticity and identity in the writings of scholars including Mattijs van de Port, and applied them to jazz dance. Her own aesthetic preference is that jazz dance should be performed in direct relationship to jazz music.

Keywords:   African dance, Authenticity, Buster Brown, Jazz aesthetic, Jazz clubs, Jazz dance, Jazz music, New York City, West Africa

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