The photograph depicts young female dancers from the Liberian National Dance Troupe of William Lewis. Mr. Lewis was at the time director of Folklore and Culture Affairs in the Liberian government. "African ballet, as a scenic art for modern audiences, is a montage of traditional sequences making a comprehensive story with an exposition, a plot, and , as with all morality tales, a conclusion. The next prerequisite is to be acquainted with a large number of traditional dance movements. Thirdly, ethnic trends are quickly learned. If you want grace in motion, delicacy of touch, select the Kru or Glebo; for powerful stomping call the Vai; quickest tempo may be provided by Gola, Gio, ...." [Dorsinville R., 1970: The Making of Liberian Ballet. African Arts. Regents of the University of California. Published by UCLA James S. Coleman African Studies Center]. This photograph was taken when Eliot Elisofon was on assignment for Life magazine and traveled to Africa from August 18, 1959 to December 20, 1959.
F 2 VAI 13 EE 59
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