Lyrical dance is a style that combines ballet and jazz dancing techniques. It is performed to music with lyrics so that it inspires expression of strong emotions the choreographer feels from the lyrics of the song. This style concentrates on an individual approach and expressiveness of such emotions as love, joy, hurt, or anger. It does not concentrate on the dancer’s precision of movement. To understand what Lyrical dance is, we need to understand some of the lyrical background and why dancers choose to use Lyrical dance.
The Lyrical style has a relatively recent history and brings together ballet with rock/folk/pop/alternative music and a variety of jazz and modern dance styles. Music for this style may consist of many genres including pop, rock, and hip- hop.
In Lyrical dance the upper body movements resemble traditional African dance forms. The term Lyrical Dance comes from the word “lyrical,” which means to have a poetic, expressive quality; expressing spontaneous feelings and deep personal emotions. Music used for Lyrical dance is usually emotionally charged and expressive and give dancers a chance to express a range of strong emotions through their dancing. Lyrical is often choreographed to a song about freedom or overcoming obstacles. Their movements attempt to show the meaning of the music. It is very passionate and can tell a story through movement. This style is becoming so popular because the audience can easily relate to the emotion of the dancer and the choreography.
Lyrical dance tends to cover a large amount of space on the stage or dance room floor. The dancers travel with high and soaring leaps and graceful turns and walks. It is challenging for choreographers and dancers to interpret the music. Movements in lyrical are fluid, continuous, and graceful, with the dancer flowing seamlessly from one move to another with little or no stopping, holding finishing steps as long as possible. These emotional dance moves help the dancer connect on an emotional level with the audience.
The origins of Lyrical dance are difficult to pinpoint. It seems to have come out of the entertainment world, where dancers began to mix jazz with ballet. Although Lyrical dance takes from ballet and jazz styles, it is not as physically demanding as these styles. There is less concentration on precision and more on individual style. This enables more people to explore this modern style – people with different body types, different experiences, and different ages. When learning a lyrical dance, it is important and helpful to have a solid background in at least ballet, if not also jazz or other styles of modern dance.
Lyrical dance is an evolving form, which has received much attention from various television dance competition shows in recent years. Dance teachers have found that Lyrical dance can be a great introductory class for young children because it instills a sense of enjoyment by simply moving to the music. This will prepare them for the more strenuous drills of ballet in a fun way.