It starts with the heartbeat. The pulse of life. We march to it, dance to it, work to it -- it drives us, and pulls us together. In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge -- from the drill grounds of World War II to the spectacle of Riverdance, moving together in time.
Choreographer and dancer Jim Sutton teaches at NYU and the University of Wisconsin. He tells Steve Paulson that percussive rhythm is the secret behind the success of shows like Riverdance and Stomp! Also, historian William McNeill tells Steve about his notion of "muscular bonding." He says that moving together in rhythm creates powerful bonds among people and that dancing was crucial to our prehistoric ancestors. His book on the subject is "Keeping Together in Time: Dance and Drill in Human History."SEGMENT 2:
Mike Leckrone is the director of the University of Wisconsin Bands. He tells Jim Fleming how he uses precision and rhythm to create exciting half-time shows and how he gets band members to lift their knees and point their toes while playing an instrument and walking to the right spot!SEGMENT 3:
Feminist dance historian Sally Banes tells Judith Strasser how Sleeping Beauty's choreography expresses the character's strengths, and describes a post modern dancer's unique interpretation of the wedding story. Banes is the author of "Dancing Women: Female Bodies on Stage." Also, novelist Jane Hamilton tells Judith about "The Short History of A Prince." It's her new novel about a young man who yearns to be a ballet dancer, despite limited physical ability.Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 98-06-14-C.
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