Dancing Stories in Greek and Roman Antiquity and Beyond


Choreonarratives, a collection of essays by classicists, dance scholars, and dance practitioners, explores the uses of dance as a narrative medium. Case studies from Greek and Roman antiquity illustrate how dance contributed to narrative repertoires in their multimodal manifestations, while discussions of modern and contemporary dance shed light on practices, discourses, and ancient legacies regarding the art of dancing stories.
Benefitting from the crossover of different disciplinary, historical, and artistic perspectives, the volume looks beyond current narratological trends and investigates the manifold ways in which dance can acquire meaning, disclose storyworlds ranging from myths to individual life-stories, elicit the narratees’ responses, and generate powerful narratives of its own. Together, the eclectic approaches of Choreonarratives>/i> rethink dance’s capacity to tell, enrich, and inspire stories.

Contributors are Sophie M. Bocksberger, Iris J. Bührle, Marie-Louise Crawley, Samuel N. Dorf, Karin Fenböck, Susan L. Foster, Laura Gianvittorio-Ungar, Sarah Olsen, Lucia Ruprecht, Karin Schlapbach, Danuta Shanzer, Christina Thurner, Yana Zarifi-Sistovari, Bernhard Zimmermann

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Laura Gianvittorio-Ungar (PhD 2008, Palermo) is postdoctoral researcher in Classics at the University of Vienna/Austrian Academy of Sciences. She works on ancient Greek and Roman performance cultures and runs the project “Aeschylus’ narrative drama”, sponsored by the FWF-Austrian Science Fund.
Karin Schlapbach (PhD 2001, Zurich) is professor of Classics at the University of Fribourg (Switzerland). She is the author of The Anatomy of Dance Discourse (OUP 2018). Her current research focuses on physical aspects of literary production in Graeco-Roman antiquity.
List of Figures
Notes on Contributors

1 Introduction: Narratives in Motion
Laura Gianvittorio-Ungar and Karin Schlapbach

Part 1 Dance as Medium of Narration

2 Dance and Narrative in Greek Comedy
Bernhard Zimmermann

3 Narrative Dance: Imitating Ēthos and Pathos through Schēmata
Sophie M. Bocksberger

4 Making Sense: Dance in Ancient Greek Mystery Cults and in Acts of John
Karin Schlapbach

5 A Dancer’s Discourse: Noé Soulier Choreographs Virginia Woolf
Lucia Ruprecht

Part 2 Dancers as Narrators, Narratives of Dance

6 Dancing Io’s Life: Hurt Body, Tragic Suffering (Prometheus Bound 561–608)
Laura Gianvittorio-Ungar

7 Narrating Neoptolemus: Dance and Death in Euripides’ Andromache
Sarah Olsen

8 Salome’s Dance: Heads and Bodies between Narrative and Intertextuality
Danuta Shanzer

9 Dancing Life Stories: Embodied Auto-bio-narratives
Christina Thurner

Part 3 Translations and Reenactments

10 Generic Transformations: Dancing Shakespeare from the 18th to the 21st Century
Julia I. Bührle

11 Gesture as a Means for Portraying Characters in Viennese Mid-18th-century Ballet
Karin Fenböck

12 The Ballets Russes and the Greek Dance in Paris: Nijinsky’s Faune, Fantasies of the Past, and the Dance of the Future
Samuel N. Dorf

13 Cross-Cultural Perspectives: Adapting Euripides’ Hippolytos, as Indonesian Dance Drama
Yana Zarifi-Sistovari

14 The Fragmentary Monumental: Dancing Female Stories in the Museum of Archaeology
Marie-Louise Crawley

15 Epilogue
Susan Leigh Foster

Specialists/students in Classics interested in Greek and Roman performance culture and its reception; specialists/students in Performance and Dance Studies interested in ancient and modern dance history and re-enactment.