The relationship between language and dance – LINES Ballet dancers discuss

Alonzo King LINES Ballet dives into the subject of disappearing languages this spring season with endangered language specialist and poet, Bob Holman. As the dancers explore connections between this riveting issue and it’s relationship to the body and movement in the studio, we asked them to share their reflections. Read on for more…


“Language is of most importance because it is the way we understand one another. More than one’s diction, it can also provide a sense of refuge and community. To connect with someone who speaks or moves in the same tongue is a beautiful opportunity for stories to be shared, knowledge to be passed on.”

– Courtney Henry


“Language is life. It’s how all of humanity relates and reacts to each other. How we move. Even how we survive. It goes to the core of who we are and how we’ve come to understand the world around us. A written code of symbols that maneuver pathways that shape who we are.”

– Maddie DeVries


“To me language means expression and communication. It is how we communicate large and specific ideas. Ideas that my be too large or specific to communicate through just feeling and body gestures. Dance is the highest forum of body language.”

– Babatunji Johnson


“Language is the human connection that shares love, knowledge, thoughts, and words between minds. Our forms of language, verbal or written or physical, collect understanding and empathy to absorb and transform into a perceptive reaction. Like this we judge, we learn, we observe, and we grow.”

– Maya Harr


“[Dance is] another way of communicating. Instead of using words, dance uses the body to speak. It can be just as or even more powerful. Through dance we can send messages that will be understood by people worldwide!”

-Adji Cissoko

Spring Home Season 2017

with endangered language specialist and poet, Bob Holman
May 4-14
at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts


All photos by RJ Muna