Dance is a universal language knowing no cultural or national borders. It is the language of the body, of a skill and art form created by man, who is not only the means of its expression but the work of art itself. Older than human history (for it is known in the animal world, too) since time immemorial dance has expressed, marked, and accompanied the basic preoccupations of individuals and communities. Man danced to communicate with divine beings, to tell stories of life and to attract. Archetypal motives of ritual, religious and sexual dance are to be found not only in the preserved folk heritage but in social dances and modern theatrical dance forms too.
Taking into consideration that European culture has grown out of the ancient Mediterranean civilizations, in the history of European dance Greece has remained to this day an inspiring source and heritage of a great number of contemporary artists.
The development of theatrical dancing can be traced back to the 15th century when ballet, first developed on the royal courts of Europe, became established as a specific dance form in itself. Flourishing in France in the XVII century it spread throughout Europe, including Russia, where its hitherto achievements were raised to a higher level in every respect. Social dancing developed in parallel.
The 20th century brought about a true renaissance in dance. Through continual interaction with the other arts, limitless in expression and form, dance developed into an all-embracive summation of techniques and approaches.