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the ballet Gloria (MacMillan 1980) deals with the theme of war and the anguish of loss and challenges the choices of civillians during war time

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MOVEMENTS (actions and dynamics)

  • canon
  • unison
  • pas de trois 
  • one of the leading male dancers rolling lifelessly down the banking at the back of the stage symbolises a dead body rolling back into or out of the trench
  • some movements symbolise holding a gun
  • the zig zag movements used during one of the solos represent the uneven ground of no mans land 

during the final moments of the piece the corps de ballet come one to the stage and the pas de trois are lifted by members of the corps. the three principle dancers who are being lifted are brought together as they create strong crucifix shapes with their bodies. this highlights the theme of faith and glory in god, they then join hand and are turned smoothly (whilst still elevated) to create the holy trinity, which, also supports the theme of religion; which again also fits with the musci choice of Gloria as a known hymn 

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  • ceremonial
  • enhancement of mood and atmosphere 
  • harrowing
  • the slow music shows the soldiers yearning and erratic thoughts by being pre-occupied by war
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  • the set represents a war front with sloped banking at the back of the stage to represent the trenches
  • the female soloist wore white, the 2 male soloists wear dirtier/darker costumes. the costumes look distressed. the red and yellow colours of the material of the male's costumes symbolises the wounds of war
  • dim lighting creates a depressing atmosphere  
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  • circular formations represent the unending cycle of war
  • the pas de trois are always together portraying unity
  • the female soloist uses a large space to symbolise being lost and alone
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  • unison symbolises the universal impact of war
  • canon symbolises the innevitable death of dancers 
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  • the corps de ballet represents the other soldiers and the women left behind. this also represents gender differences
  • the technique is important for the dancers to be able to effectively convey the story and emotion of the piece 
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