Dance Spreads Its Wings: Israeli Concert Dance 1920-2010 by Ruth Eshel
Why did dance and dancing became important to the construction of a new, modern, Jewish/Israeli cultural identity in the newly formed nation of Israel? There were questions that covered almost all spheres of daily life, including “What do we dance?” because Hebrew or Eretz-Israeli dance had to be created out of none. How and why did dance develop in such a way? Dance Spreads Its Wings is the first and only book that looks at the whole picture of concert dance in Israel studying the growth of Israeli concert dance for 90 years―starting from 1920, when there was no concert dance to speak of during the Yishuv (pre-Israel Jewish settlements) period, until 2010, when concert dance in Israel had grown to become one of the country’s most prominent, original, artistic fields and globally recognized. What drives the book is the impulse to create and the need to dance in the midst of constant political change. It is the story of artists trying to be true to their art while also responding to the political, social, religious, and ethnic complexities of a Jewish state in the Middle East.
Year first published: 2021