Dancing in Late Sixteenth-Century France: The Greek Legacy
Margaret M. McGowan
McGowan, Margaret M., "Dancing in Late Sixteenth-Century France: The Greek Legacy", Arti dello Spettacolo / Performing Arts, Performance and Spectacle in Early Modern Europe, 2020.
The experiments in blending poetry, music and dance in the Académie de Poésie et de Musique, founded in 1571 by Jean-Antoine de Baïf (1532-1589) and Joachim Thibault de Courville (d. 1581) under the patronage of King Charles IX, have been carefully studied: the beneficial effects of such fusion by Frances A. Yates and their influence on the creation of ballets (see Yates: 1947, Bonniffet: 1988
and McGowan: 2008). It is the purpose of this article to explore the evidence
available for these beliefs in the efficacy of the fusing of music, dance and poetry; to assess how far these views were known and discussed outside the Academy; and to consider the similarities and differences
perceived by sixteenth-century writers between the nature of Greek dancing and contemporary French performances.