In the United States dance competition culture and commercial dance are both highly visible. Although connections between the two distinct dance worlds are implicitly present, they remain largely unexamined. To begin a conversation about how commercial dance and dance competition culture relate and their influence on dance education, this article provides a contextualization of nine dance competition teacher/choreographers' perceptions of how commercial dance and dance competition culture inform each other. Interview data reveal the impression of a strong, tangible link between commercial dance and dance competition culture, and that overlapping values point to a symbiotic relationship between the two. The positioning of commercial dance and dance competition culture as popular and accessible has a direct influence on how Americans consider and engage with dance. As such, examining dance competition teacher/choreographers’ experiences provides valuable insight into the role of dance and dance education in the US.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Visual Arts and Performing Arts