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Summary Article: Performing Arts
from Encyclopedia of Giftedness, Creativity, and Talent

The performing arts use the artist's body, face, and voice to create “live art” that can be enjoyed by an audience. The performing arts require high levels of talent and creativity, requiring great physical and mental exertion during performances. The performing arts express human culture across a broad time span of human history. This entry discusses the nature of performing arts careers as well as the ways in which gifted students are involved in performing arts.

The performing arts involve the artist's own body, face, and physical presence. Performing arts include dancing, singing, acting, circus performances, theater, film, opera, music, and acrobatics. The performing arts take place before a live audience, and exist in real life for a finite amount of time. Artists who participate in the performing arts include actors, dancers, musicians, and singers.

The Western model of performing arts began during the 6th century BCE in Ancient Greece with Sophocles' tragic plays. During the 9th through the 14th centuries, performing arts in the Western world were limited to religious reenactments and morality plays. In modern times, the performing arts have expanded to include television and movie performances. New technologies allow viewers to see past performances that have been prerecorded, and in this day and age the performing arts are both a live and a historical art form.

The performing arts require a lengthy talent development process, a deep understanding of the art, and the ability to connect with a live audience on the stage. There are many exciting opportunities for gifted individuals in the performing arts, but hard work and perseverance are required for a successful career in this area. Performing artists can take lessons, practice their skills, work with mentors, and perfect their talent to a professional level.

Earning a living in the performing arts requires talent, hard work, and knowledge about a specific industry. However, many performing artists are able to create their own niche in the marketplace, finding audiences through unconventional methods ranging from word of mouth to reality television shows.

Gifted individuals who are exposed to the performing arts develop an understanding and appreciation of culture and become producers of art experiences. Individuals who have artistic talent can pursue careers in a variety of areas that are suited to their aptitude and natural talent.

See also

Artistic Ability, Dance, Drama, Talent

Further Readings
  • Karnes, F. A., & Stephens, K. R. (2007). A girl's guide to achieving in the arts. New York: Royal Fireworks.
  • Pasternack, C., & Thornburg, L. (2000). Cool careers for girls in performing arts. Manassas Park, VA: Impact Publications.
  • Piirto, J. (1999). Talented children and adults: Their development and education (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
  • Wright, B. Performing arts instruction for exceptionally and profoundly gifted children. Gifted Education Press Quarterly 16 : 4-5., 2002, Fall.
  • Henshon, Suzanna E.
    Copyright © 2009 by SAGE Publications, Inc.

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