Summer Reading List: 6 New Titles for Dance Educators
July 28, 2021

Whether you’re doing graduate research, looking for books to incorporate into your courses, or just searching for inspiration, check out these six new titles, perfect for summer reading for dance educators of all kinds.

Perpetual Motion: Dance, Digital Cultures, and the Common By Harmony Bench

2020; University of Minnesota Press

256 pages; paperback and ebook

Jill Randall

After more than a year of navigating the intersection of dance and technology due to the pandemic, this book is a rewarding way to further study dance in the digital age, with deep considerations of access and distribution, and explorations of what technology means for audience engagement, collaboration and more.

Writing In and About the Performing and Visual Arts: Creating, Performing, and Teaching Edited by Stephen J. Corbett, Jennifer Lin LeMesurier, Teagan E. Decker, and Betsy Cooper

2019; The WAC Clearinghouse and University Press of Colorado

326 pages; paperback, PDF, ePub

Jill Randall

Check out this book if you teach in secondary education or higher ed and want to explore:

  • Writing activities within your courses
  • The intersections and parallels between the writing process and the choreographic process
  • Potential connections and collaboration with the writing center on campus

Bonus: The PDF of the entire book is free and available on the CSU website.

The Natural Body in Somatics Dance Training By Doran George; edited by Susan Leigh Foster

2020; Oxford University Press

240 pages; paperback and ebook

Jill Randall

Author Doran George passed away before the completion of this book, but colleague and dance scholar Susan Leigh Foster saw the book through to publication. The Natural Body in Somatics Dance Training looks at the history of somatics, as well as its application in both training and the choreographic process. 

Onstage with Martha Graham By Stuart Hodes

2021; University Press of Florida

330 pages; paperback and ebook

Jill Randall

Early modern dance history comes alive in Stuart Hodes’ personal and easily readable memoir. Hodes shares in-depth journal details of dancing and touring with Martha Graham in the 1940s and ’50s as one of the few male dancers in early modern dance in the U.S. His expansive career took him from serving in the military to becoming a modern dancer to working in musicals and higher education.

Between Beats: The Jazz Tradition and Black Vernacular Dance By Christi Jay Wells

2021; Oxford University Press

272 pages; paperback, hardcover, ebook

Jill Randall

Christi Jay Wells, an assistant professor of musicology at Arizona State University, takes a deep dive into jazz music and dance and unpacks terms that we use in our work but oftentimes confuse, including “Black dance,” “jazz dance,” “popular dance” and “Black vernacular dance.”

Wells also writes about the many ways that jazz music and movement intertwined over the past century, in both social and concert settings.

Tandem Dances: Choreographing Immersive Performance By Julia M. Ritter

2020; Oxford University Press

288 pages; paperback, hardcover, ebook

Jill Randall

Julia M. Ritter offers the first book of its kind to explore choreography and movement within immersive performances (like the global phenomenon Sleep No More). Through interviews and research, Ritter highlights topics including:

  • The choreography of both artists and audience
  • Audience engagement and agency
  • New kinds of dramaturgical work for immersive productions

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