list of dance books

CANI

Active Member
The Irvine Legacy by Oliver Wessel-Therhorn
I wanted to mention here The Irvine Legacy DVD by Oliver Wessel-Therhorn featuring William Pino & Alessandra Bucciarelli. Since it is a DVD, it isn’t a book! ;) The reason I’m including it here in the list of dance books thread, is it is a companion to the book, and this site www. dancesport.uk.com/video/dsi-7036.htm (delete the space) suggests that it contains pretty much the same information, recommending the DVD over the book.

I had the pleasure of having a brief look at the book, and the immense pleasure of seeing the DVD through once. I’m not in a position to recommend one over the other, but thought it would be good to mention that it exists in addition to the book.

It is two DVDs. The instructional one is 130 minutes and the second one is just under an hour containing footage of Bill and Bobbie Irvine dancing and including Bill’s May 2006 lecture on the evolution of the Waltz & Foxtrot at the BDF congress in Blackpool. Bill’s lecture was wonderful. I have goose-bumps now as I write this thinking back on it.

As of the last time I checked, neither the book nor the DVD exist in the U.S. library system. Insert <<aw, shucks!>> emoticon here! I have placed a request with my library to consider buying the book. Understandably, with budgets being tight, the library is not currently in a place to purchase items which aren’t available through their normal discounted book purchasing places. Hopefully they will in the future. Once it is in one library, anyone in the U.S. should be able to borrow it through interlibrary loan.
 

CANI

Active Member
Adding three books to our list of dance books -- all by Kenneth Laws:

Physics and the Art of Dance

Physics of Dance

Physics, Dance and the Pas de Deux

I learned of these books when I came across some older posts by Larinda (If you click on the blue arrow above it should take you to one of those posts).

As an aside, if you do a search on DF on "physics" or "Kenneth Laws" there really are some incredibly interesting posts from Larinda, Steve Pastor and a few others. They piqued my interest to such an extent that I'm looking forward to reading these books even though physics was not one of my favorite subjects!:p

I have Physics and the Art of Dance in my greedy little hands right now and just started it last night. All being well, the other two will soon be on their way to me through interlibrary loans.
I've read Physics of Dance and Physics, Dance and the Pas de Deux. I will come back to share more once I've finished the third book, but I'll just briefly note that I'm very happy to have learned of these books and they are well-worth the read! I think I was expecting them to be a bit dry and difficult to understand, and I've found that just isn't the case. They are very well-written and have great illustrations, pictures and examples. I'll write more later, but now for the two reasons I'm writing this post!:

Physics, Dance and the Pas de Deux actually says on the cover that it is an updated version of Physics of Dance. I read Physics of Dance first and I can attest that everything in it is covered in Physics, Dance and the Pas de Deux . I have not finished the last book, so I don't yet know how that relates. I wanted to mention this for those who might be considering buying these books, you will want Physics, Dance and the Pas de Deux, not Physics of Dance if you are choosing between those two.

Also, Physics, Dance and the Pas de Deux is written by Kenneth Laws, as I noted, but it is also written by Cynthia Harvey -- which I didn't realize when I first wrote my post. The update from the first book to this book is significant (I think 10 years of experience and thought occured between the two)-- the examples are much more robust and there is much more discussion on partnering, and ballroom dance is actually directly mentioned a few times (!!) allbeit briefly. Cynthia Harvey is a professional dancer and Kenneth Laws is a physics professor and an amateur dancer. I found it so cool that he started dancing ballet after teaching college physics for 15 years -- so definitely as an adult!
 

CANI

Active Member
I noticed a new ballroom book is coming! Ballroom!: Obsession and Passion inside the World of Competitive Dance by Sharon Savoy. It appears that it will be available on October 31, 2010.

If any DF-ers read it, please let us know what you think!:D
 

CANI

Active Member
I noticed a new ballroom book is coming! Ballroom!: Obsession and Passion inside the World of Competitive Dance by Sharon Savoy. It appears that it will be available on October 31, 2010.

If any DF-ers read it, please let us know what you think!:D
Quoting myself here...:lol:...I'm about half-way through. Hmmm. I've enjoyed small parts here and there...however, overall must say it isn't my cup of tea.
 

CANI

Active Member
My thanks to Warren Dew for mentioning the books, Modern Ballroom Dancing by Victor Silvester and Modern Ballroom Dancing by Henry Jacques. I enjoyed the portions of them that I read. I did not delve in detail into the step descriptions, but I'm glad to know of them and can peruse them in more detail in the future!

Also, thank you herekittykitty for the mention of Ballroom Icons by Brigitt Mayer-Karakis and U.H. Mayer...gorgeous book...I am having a wonderful time reading it!
 

samina

Well-Known Member
Hah...coincidentally, I read Victor Silvester's "Modern Ballroom Dancing Yeserday". :) Have not read the other two you mention, CANI...will add them to my list.

Say, question, as I know your are using your own library's inter-load system...were you able to locate "Dance To Your Maximum" by Max Winkelhuis and the "Latin: Thinking, Sensing & Doing" book by Ruud Vermeij through your library?

Mine came back nil for those two, and I would think they'd be available *somewhere*. The only copy of Max's book they found was supposedly in the Netherlands. I'm inclined to go to the Reference department and tell them I suspect they didn't look hard enough. ;)
 

CANI

Active Member
Say, question, as I know your are using your own library's inter-load system...were you able to locate "Dance To Your Maximum" by Max Winkelhuis and the "Latin: Thinking, Sensing & Doing" book by Ruud Vermeij through your library?

Mine came back nil for those two, and I would think they'd be available *somewhere*. The only copy of Max's book they found was supposedly in the Netherlands. I'm inclined to go to the Reference department and tell them I suspect they didn't look hard enough. ;)
Nope!...why I started the Dance Book Sharing thread:
An idea popped into my head that might work with regularly posting DF-ers -- book sharing.

I'm not thinking about this in general -- as libraries are really ideal for most books. However, there are some books people have liked on DF that are quite expensive and, unfortunately, are not in the U.S. library system.
pm me a place to mail them before the end of the weekend and I'll get them out to you...:)
 

CANI

Active Member
Victor Silvester: Dancing is my Life
I thought this was an interesting memoir. Overall, it didn't delve into enough detail about the dancing (how he learned, his struggles, details about his competitions, his teaching) to be of interest to me as a dance-related book (although, admittedly, I am spoiled by having read The Dancing Years by Bill and Bobbie Irvine, so it could just be that that book is a tough act to follow). I would have liked much more details and personal accounts of his thoughts and emotions along the journey. He certainly shared his personal story but it was missing something for me.

However, I'm still glad I read it -- there was enough about it to enjoy that it wasn't a waste of time. Thank you, piimapoika, for the mention of this book.
 
I would like to see a book on the history of the various figures - open telemark, impetus turn, oversway, and all the others we know and love - when they were first danced, by whom, what was thought of them at the time, and so on. Has anyone written it?
 
Say, question, as I know your are using your own library's inter-load system...were you able to locate "Dance To Your Maximum" by Max Winkelhuis and the "Latin: Thinking, Sensing & Doing" book by Ruud Vermeij through your library?

Mine came back nil for those two, and I would think they'd be available *somewhere*. The only copy of Max's book they found was supposedly in the Netherlands. I'm inclined to go to the Reference department and tell them I suspect they didn't look hard enough. ;)
Check out WorldCat (worldcat.org) to take a look. (A quick look shows they're correct - Dance To Your Maximum is only in the Netherlands. Is it really in Dutch though?)
 

CANI

Active Member
I would like to see a book on the history of the various figures - open telemark, impetus turn, oversway, and all the others we know and love - when they were first danced, by whom, what was thought of them at the time, and so on. Has anyone written it?
I'm not aware of one (but that's not saying much...)

The Irvine Legacy by Oliver Wessel-Therhorn has a chapter on the history of various figures. Oliver writes that there isn't much recorded history on such things, but that Miss Josephine Bradley had had numerous conversations with ballroom dancers and had captured such conversations in her diaries. Upon her death, she left her diaries to Bill and Bobbie Irvine. Oliver, who wrote his book at the request of Bill Irvine, said he got the information for his chapter from those diaries. So, that is at least one source.

Other books I've read reference figures and their origin as part of the overall flow of the book. For example, Victor Silvester in his book Dancing is my Life references that he invented the natural turn in waltz. He also mentions a few other steps.

So, to my knowledge, there is a smattering of information in a couple of books, but I'm not aware of one that summarizes it all in one book.
 

UKDancer

Well-Known Member
Thank you Cani! I will have to reread Dancing is my Life and look out for The Irvine Legacy, which appears to be out of print and Abebooks doesn't have it.
To the best of my knowledge, 'The Irvine Legacy' is readily available from the publisher, DSI. They have only recently produced a companion DVD, and for the sake of its sales, it is unlikely that they would let the book go out of print.
 

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