What are the Performing Arts?

We explain what are the Performing Arts and the history of these artistic representations. The types that exist and their elements.

  1. What are the Performing Arts?

It is known as Performing Arts to all those who are destined for a stage performance , that is, a staging, a staging. Thus, all the artistic forms of mass exhibition such as cinema, theater , dance , ballet, music, performance and all those that require a scenic space.

These scenarios can occur in buildings specially designed for this purpose, such as theaters, showrooms and multipurpose rooms, or they can take advantage of urban or architectural spaces of a public nature , as in street shows such as the circus or the comedy of art.

Even non-artistic forms such as parades, religious processions, folk festivals or carnivals have a very clear scenic dimension, and are often taken into account by the Performing Arts.

The stage performances, on the other hand, are ephemeral (they occur in real time) and may or may not involve the public in their development , especially in cases of street theater where there is no type of set design.

In any case, the Performing Arts tend to adapt to the space occupied by the representation and do not usually require much more than the actors and the public, since the former use their own body on stage as the instrument by which to produce the desired aesthetic effect , as is evident in the case of ballet or contemporary dance.

  1. History of the Performing Arts

The Performing Arts have important historical backgrounds , ranging from the shamanic rituals of spring celebration , to the Greek Tragedy and the Panhellenic Games of Ancient Greece, or the Floral Games of the later Roman Empire and the Christian Sacred Theater.

Such representations have always been central to the cultural life of nations, since they have, especially theater, an important political dimension.

It is assumed, from rock images and other evidence, that music would have appeared first, then dance and finally theater as a complex form of the latter. Its most recent aspects are those close to the cinema, whose cinematography technique would not be invented until the 19th century.

  1. Types of Performing Arts

Performing arts
The dance consists of moving the body aesthetically to the rhythm of the background music.

The Performing Arts involve the following manifestations:

  • Stagecraft . The theater has been throughout the history of humanity one of the most cultivated Performing Arts and of greater political importance, given its ability to convene masses and deliver a message behind the staging of a story, real or fictional. In its staging there are usually loans from other performing arts (singing, dance) and also from literature (script).
  • Dance . Whether it is classical ballet, contemporary dance or even folk dances, it consists of the staging of the body that moves aesthetically to the rhythm of the background music. This artistic form is one of the most primitive of humanity and fulfilled outstanding ritual purposes.
  • Music . An autonomous art at the same time as a Scenic Art, is one of the most complex and elevated aesthetic forms that exist, since it achieves by means of sounds made with different instruments and orchestrated by a conductor, producing symphonies of different complexity and length that evoke different feelings and impressions.
  • Circo . The so-called circus arts include unconventional staging, such as juggling, clowns, prestidigitators, etc. This is the legacy of the legendary Roman circus, which has been incorporated much less aggressive and more aesthetically surprising elements, but still has a certain risk character and even associated magic.
  • Performances . The other more or less defined aspects can be considered performances, that is, improvisations or acts prepared to “occur” in the middle of the public or in a street or public place, such as  flashmobs  (spontaneous dances organized in secret).
  1. What are the elements of the Performing Arts?

Performing Arts do not require too many elements, which can be three:

  • Actors . The really indispensable thing for any representation are the actors or dancers, who use their body on stage to produce an aesthetic effect. It can be said that in the Performing Arts the show of one or more artistically trained bodies is exhibited.
  • Public . Another indispensable factor, because a representation cannot occur without an audience that contemplates it, be it of any kind.
  • Scenario . As we said before, a stage can be a theater or a performance hall, or it can be the street, an improvised stage or a public square.
  • Objects . Often the performing artists have the support of objects, either as scenic scenery or as participants in the performance, or simply as technical assistance to produce the desired effect (such as stilts, coturnos, etc.)

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