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by Archaeology Newsroom

Dance Through the Art of Mimicry in the Ancient Greek World

Theatre was one of the most important pleasures in the life of ancient Greece, serving in the best way the entertainment of the spectators and the artistic creation. In the theatre the spectators were entertaining themselves, while at the same time they were improving their education through their acquaintance with myths, religion and imaginary events that were directly related to their every day life and were presented as reality by the masterly play writers of their time. In all three kinds of ancient theater the members of the chorus and the actors-dancers were singing and dancing or simply dancing with mimic motions, dressed in the appropriate costumes and often wearing masks. The dancers had perfectly learned all the roles they would impersonate, therefore there were many who believed that these performers had many souls in one body. The art of mimicry was directly related with the theatrical dances and was a basic element of the dance performance. The dancer had to combine brains, acting and dancing talent with physical beauty, Thus, the overall result of his performance would fill the spectators with enthusiasm, and the grandeur of the spectacle would hypnotize them, since there were many who regarded the dancers as divine and the artistry of their dance as a gift of god.