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International Dance Day 2020

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by Gillian Ching (subscribe)
I'm a freelance writer living in Brisbane who loves exploring quirky places with my dog. Join me on my quest to find, experience, and share fun things to do and interesting places to go.Please subscribe if you enjoy the articles.
Published April 3rd 2020
Bring your best moves and groove into April for the global celebration of dance on International Dance Day . That's right. April 29 is International Dance Day - a celebration for anyone who attaches value and importance to dance.

Photo courtesy Andre Hunter


Why 29 April? Well, it just happens to coincide with the birthdate of Jean Georges Noverre, the French choreographer and dancer who created modern ballet

Who is Jean Georges Noverre?
Jean Georges Novarre made his first professional appearances as a youth in Paris at the Opéra-Comique, at Fontainebleau, in Berlin before Frederick II. In 1775, he was appointed maître des ballets of the Paris Opera at the request of Queen Marie Antoinette.

He returned to Vienna in Spring of 1776 to stage ballets there but in June 1776 he returned to Paris. He regained this post until the French Revolution reduced him to poverty. He died on October 19, 1810, at Saint-Germain-en-Laye.

How do you move
If groovin on International Dance Day sounds like your kind of thing, there are so many styles of dance to play with. Think of the splendid beauty of ballet or the international hip swirling of belly dancing. Not to forget the sexy sways of salsa, to the high energy of jazz, modern and tap. There's always free-form, interpretive dance which gives you endless scope to create your own moves.

Photo courtesy Juan Camila Navarro


The health benefits of dancing
While being loads of fun, dancing offers a range of health benefits and can be a way to stay fit and be creative at the same time. Some of the physical and mental health benefits of dance include:

improved condition of your heart and lungs. Dancing is a great cardio workout. Like any good, low-impact cardio workout, dancing can improve cardiovascular health.
increased muscular strength, endurance and motor fitness.
increased aerobic fitness.
improved muscle tone and strength.
weight management.
stronger bones and reduced risk of osteoporosis.
• better coordination, agility and flexibility.
• improved balance and spatial awareness.
• increased physical confidence.
• improved mental functioning.
• improved general and psychological well-being.
• greater self-confidence and self-esteem.

Let's get dancing
How are you going to celebrate International Dance Day? While this year it can't be celebrated with the normal festivals and events, there are lots of things that you and your kids can do at home to celebrate International Dance Day.

Here are some ideas:
1. Watch a dance movie 80s classics like Footloose, Flashdance[/I, [I]Fame, Dirty Dancing Does Xanadu count? Who needs an excuse to tune into Channing Tatum in Step Up, John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever or Paul Mercurio in Strictly Ballroom.

2. Have your own dance party at home.

3. Jump on Youtube and learn a new dance move.

4. Re-create your favourite dance in your lounge room. Think Kate Bush in "Wuthering Heights". Beyonce in "Single Ladies".

5. Have a dance off with family and online friends.

Photo courtesy Laura Fuhrman


While these may require some research and downloading, the easiest way is just to sing, put on some music, and, well, dance like no-one is watching. No judgement. In this time of social distancing and isolation, you can feel safe in knowing that no-one actually is!

So find you Happy Feet, raise the floor and get stompin' and grooving this International Dance Day. You'll be glad that you did.
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