ABOUT THE BOOK
The work Dance Spreads its Wings by Dr. Ruth Eshel is an impressive achievement, the result of innovative research encompassing eighty years of Concert Dance in Israel. With her richly diverse experience as a dancer-choreographer, and as a research scholar, Eshel’s unique perspective and extensive skills have together created a history of dance in Israel that is both comprehensive and insightful. The book provides an overview, laying out for the reader the dramatic journey of the creative process of dance, through all its twists and turns, which serves as a cultural seismograph of the ever-changing times, as differing circumstances spark new questions. The personal is blended with the social, political and economic upheavals of Israeli society, influenced by the outside world, as concert dance develops into the story of the corpus of dancers and individual artists who represent evolving Israeli identity and culture through time. In this perpetually challenging country, constantly seeking new ideas, concert dance has stood out since the year 2000 as a field of highly intensive creativity.
The book answers the question “How did all this come to be?”, and points towards several different future challenges, with the ever present tension between the local identity and global influences.
The book is intended for everyone involved in the diverse dance community, and for everyone interested in Israeli Art.
Dr. Ruth Eshel has a rich background in performance and research in dance. Having danced and choreographed many multi-disciplinary solo recitals (1968-1977) she went on to establish the contemporary Ethiopian dance troupes, Eskesta and Beta (1995-2010). She is the author of the book ‘Dancing with the Dream – The Development of Artistic Dance In Israel 1920-1964’ (1991), the founding editor of the periodical Dance Today (from 2000) and a dance critic for Ha’aretz (from 1991). Dr. Eshel has also been a field researcher for the Israel Dance Archive at Beit Ariella from its establishment (1991-1995), a lecturer on the history of dance, and dance in Israel at Haifa University (1991-2005) and a co-editor of the quarterly, Dance in Israel (1993-1998) with Giora Manor. She received the Minister of Culture’s Lifetime Achievement Award in Artistic Dance in 2012.