Performing Arts: Dance

Displaying 1 - 25 of 74
Mia Arbatova

Mia Arbatova

Mia Arbatova (née Hirshwald) was one of the leading pioneers of classical ballet in Israel.

Yehudit Arnon

Under Arnon’s direction the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company toured throughout Israel, the United States, Europe and the Far East. In 1996 she became the director emerita of the Kibbutz Dance Company.

Cora Baird and Bill Baird

Cora Baird

Cora Baird was half of the world-renowned Bil & Cora Baird Marionettes.

Tatjana Barbakoff, 1931

Tatjana Barbakoff

Born Cilly Edelberg in Latvia in 1899, the dancer who called herself Tatjana Barbakoff lacked formal dance training, yet created a world of her own through her charming personality, exotic stage costumes and lyrical dance expression.

Shulamith Bat-Dori, 1930

Shulamit Bat-Dori

Upon her arrival in Palestine in 1923, nineteen-year-old Mita Gutgeld tried her hand at house plastering, tractor driving—and writing plays. As Shulamith Bat Dori, she pioneered the kibbutz theater and staged major theatrical performances which, at the beginning of the 1950s, were attended by ten percent of the country’s population.

Leah Bergstein

Leah Bergstein was the first of the choreographers in Palestine who at the beginning of the 1930s created festival dances at A voluntary collective community, mainly agricultural, in which there is no private wealth and which is responsible for all the needs of its members and their families.kibbutzim, attempting to depict life in pre-state Israel in general and on agricultural settlements in particular. The unique creation of festival pageants contributed greatly to the development of a genre of rural Israeli festival and holiday celebrations and the creation of the first The Land of IsraelErez Israel dances.

Deborah Bertonoff

Deborah Bertonoff

Deborah Bin-Gorion (Bertonoff), a pioneer of Israeli dance and recipient of the 1991 Israel Prize, was born on March 12, 1915 in Tiflis (Tbilisi), Georgia in the former Soviet Union while her parents were on tour with a theater troupe.

Gertrud Bodenwieser

Gertrud Bodenwieser

Gertrud Bodenwieser belonged to the first generation of modern dancers in Vienna.

Susan Braun

Susan Braun

Susan Braun preserved what were thought to be inherently fleeting experiences when, in 1956, she founded Dance Films Association to support, promote, and archive films of dance performances. Her efforts helped establish a community of dancers and filmmakers and formed a new genre of film.
Yara Bernette (Bernette Epstein)

Brazil, Contemporary

The Brazilian Jewish community is the second largest Jewish community in South America and one of the ten largest in the world.

Front Cover Matter of "Corinne Chochem's Collection of Palestine Dances and Songs"

Corinne Chochem

Best remembered for her contribution to Jewish cultural life and for her unique ability to inspire those around her, Corinne Chochem had a distinct impact on Hebrew folk dance, both in her teaching and her two books, Palestine Dances (1941) and Jewish Holiday Dances (1948), the latter an original work for which Leonard Bernstein, Darius Milhaud, Ernst Toch, and Tedesco wrote music based on the original folk tunes.

Selma Jeanne Cohen's Encyclopedia of Dance

Selma Jeanne Cohen

It was Selma Jeanne Cohen’s mission in life to make dance scholarship a respected field, taking its place with the study of the other arts both in society and, particularly, the university. As a writer, editor, and teacher, she was a leader in transforming dance history, aesthetics, and criticism into respected disciplines. She encouraged and often trained those who are now working in these vital fields, so that dance is no longer viewed as mere entertainment, but is studied as a rich art on many levels, from the most elite to varieties of popular and folk expression, illuminating society in new and valuable ways. She was an internationalist, her Jewish heritage playing little part in her life or her approach to dance in the world. However, when being inducted into the Dance Library of Israel Hall of Fame in 2001, she spoke eloquently of her love of Israel and what it meant to her.

Yardena Cohen

Yardena Cohen

Yardena Cohen, daughter of Miriam Rafalkes and Pinhas Cohen (1887–1956), was born on July 1, 1910 in Wadi Nisnas (the Arab name of a district near the Haifa port). Yardena was the oldest of three children; the others were musicologist and writer Ruth Keviti Jordan (c. 1921–c. 1997) and Nir. Her father, who was born in Zikhron Ya’akov, graduated first from the Ritual bathMikveh Israel agricultural school and then from an agricultural college in Berlin. In 1908 he founded the first Hebrew school in Haifa. Her mother, who was born near Vilna c. 1880 and was a descendant of the Vilna Head of the Torah academies of Sura and Pumbedita in 6th to 11th c. Babylonia.Gaon (Elijah ben Solomon Zalman, 1720–1797), studied science with Chaim Weizmann in Geneva and then joined her parents, who were founders of Rehovot. She died in Haifa c. 1960.

Dance in the Yishuv and Israel

Until 1920, dance—like other artistic activities—was virtually nonexistent in Palestine, then a neglected province of the Ottoman Empire. The Bezalel Academy of Art and Design (founded in 1906) operated in Jerusalem, while Tel Aviv had two modest music conservatories, Shulamit (founded in 1910) and Beit Ha-Levi’im (founded in 1914). Attempts were also made to set up small symphony orchestras and amateur theater, but these soon folded. There were no dance or drama schools or even auditoriums. Under the more liberal administration of the Mandate for Palestine given to Great Britain by the League of Nations in April 1920 to administer Palestine and establish a national home for the Jewish people. It was terminated with the establishment of the State of Israel on May 14, 1948.British Mandate which went into effect in 1920, waves of immigration increased until, by the middle of the 1920s, the Jewish population reached about ninety thousand. (There were 83,790 Jews in Palestine according to the first British census in 1922). The character of immigration also changed: while previously most of the immigrants had been young idealists who arrived as individuals, most of those who arrived during the third Lit. "ascent." A "calling up" to the Torah during its reading in the synagogue.aliyah (1919–1923) were entire families, primarily from eastern Europe. They increased the population in urban settlements, built on the sands of Tel Aviv, and gave momentum to the development of the arts, particularly dance.

Helen Tamiris

Dance Performance in the United States

Dance has always had a special place in the Jewish community because of its capacity to heighten communal and individual joy at weddings as prescribed in the Lit. "teaching," "study," or "learning." A compilation of the commentary and discussions of the amora'im on the Mishnah. When not specified, "Talmud" refers to the Babylonian Talmud.Talmud, at bar and Lit. "daughter of the commandment." A girl who has reached legal-religious maturity and is now obligated to fulfill the commandmentsbat mitzvah celebrations, and on other happy occasions. The Bible contains many mentions of dance in celebration of important holidays and Israelite victories. Jews have always danced with the Torah she-bi-khetav: Lit. "the written Torah." The Bible; the Pentateuch; Tanakh (the Pentateuch, Prophets and Hagiographia)Torah scrolls in processionals on the holiday of Lit. "rejoicing of the Torah." Holiday held on the final day of Sukkot to celebrate the completing (and recommencing) of the annual cycle of the reading of the Torah (Pentateuch), which is divided into portions one of which is read every Sabbath throughout the year.Simhat Torah, and there are movement processionals on other holidays, as well as during the weekly Sabbath services. A very simple form of dance is even part of Jewish prayer, as the rhythmic rocking movement of davening (praying) literally embodies the notion of total devotion to God.

Katya Delakova

Katya Delakova was a pioneer of Jewish dance, blending folk traditions, Hasidic worship, modern dance, and improvisation. Her integration of various dance philosophies from around the world allowed her to create and teach her own philosophy, titled “The Art of Moving.”
Maya Deren in "Meshes of the Afternoon," 1943

Maya Deren

For a woman who was to transform film, it is fitting that Maya Deren was born in Russia in 1917, during the birth of the Revolution.

Born Eleanora Derenkowsky in Kiev, Ukraine, on April 29, 1917, the only child of Marie (Fiedler) and Solomon David Derenkowsky, she was named after Eleanora Duse, the eminent Italian actor.

Oshra Elkayam-Ronen

Oshra Elkayam-Ronen

Oshra Elkayam-Ronen, who belongs to the pioneer generation of Israeli movement theater, is one of the important Israeli choreographers in this style. One can discern two main theoretical topics in her work: questions about the nature of life, and the relationship between men and women. She maintains that she feels like a human being who has been cast into the world, searching for a place to hold on to. She sees life as a paradox but at the same time has a drive to create, ambition to realize herself, “to climb on the ladders”—all of which require incessant pursuit. “The only permanent element that cannot be stopped,” she maintains, “is time, which acts like a local train going through a series of life stations that lead in the end to an unattained goal.” Her work appears as if it were immersed in a pool of fantasy, humor and optimism.

Rosa Eskenazi trio

Rosa Eskenazi

Roza Eskenazi, arguably the greatest and most renowned Greek diva, was born in Constantinople and named Sarah Skinazi. Roza’s exact date of birth is not known. In her autobiography Auta Pou Thimame (What I Remember) she states that she was born in 1910. Published in 1982, the autobiography is based on interviews Eskenazi gave in 1972. Apart from being forgetful by then, she appears to have deliberately concealed her age, as she probably had done since the 1920s. The Greek musicologist Panayiotis Kounadis is among those who believe that Eskenazi was born between 1883 and 1887, whilst others maintain that she was born between 1890 and 1900.

Wedding Ceremony of Lybian Jews

Ethnic Dance in the Yishuv and Israel: 1900-2000

In order to examine the subject of women in ethnic dance in Israel (as well as pre-State Palestine), one must define the various categories that come under this heading and explain what distinguishes and what unites them. The unique mode of ethnic dance in Israel is more properly referred to as dances of various ethnic communities, encompassing both Jewish and non-Jewish ethnic groups. This article, devoted to the role of women in ethnic dance, may be divided into two primary topics: the first concerns the role, state and function of women in the dances of the various ethnic communities, and the second, individual women who contributed to the cultivation and development of ethnic dances through their work in creating, studying and organizing this field.

Rivka Sturman

Folk Dance, Israeli

For the halutzim (pioneers), Israeli folk dances were originally an expression of ideology and values in the guise of pleasurable and liberating leisure activity. As a result, it is possible to identify a veritable “movement” of Israeli dance, in which women played a primary role, although Barukh Aggadati (1895–1976), a unique pioneer on the pre-state artistic scene, created and performed the first Israeli folk dance in Tel Aviv in 1924.

Mary Frank

At a time when figurative work has not been an artistic imperative, Frank imparts a sense of the timeless and elemental to her work, placing her among the foremost figurative artists of our time.

Esther Gamlielit

Gamlielit became famous within the theater and beyond for her performances of songs that called for acting and singing with the Yemenite-style pronunciation of the Hebrew letters het and ayin, among them: “Tango Temani,” “Elimelekh,” “Gedalyah Reva Ish,” “Be-Karmei Teman,” “Ha-Yeled Nissim” and “Ha-Tender Nosea.”

Annabelle Gamson

More than any other artist in the mid-1970s, Annabelle Gamson initiated unprecedented attention to the history of American modern dance. Her musically inspired, passionate performances of dances, choreographed by Isadora Duncan and others in the early twentieth century, brought about a resurgence of interest in Duncan’s work and her legacy, modern dance.

Marika Gidali

Marika Gidali

Dancer Marika Gidali was born in Budapest on April 29, 1937.

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