How Does Baroque Dancing Differ From Ballet?


What is Baroque Dancing?

Baroque dancing is a style of dance from the period of European history known as the Baroque era (circa 1600-1750). It is characterized by intricate, formal footwork and elaborate, graceful arm movements. It was popularized by the court of Louis XIV in France and spread throughout Europe, eventually becoming part of the social customs at court.

How Does it Differ From Ballet?

Baroque dancing differs from ballet in several ways. First, Baroque dancing places more emphasis on intricate footwork than on jumps and leaps, which are more common in ballet.

Secondly, Baroque dancing has more varied and complex arm movements than ballet does. Finally, Baroque dancing is focused on creating a stately aesthetic rather than expressing an emotion or story through movement like in ballet.

Baroque Versus Ballet: a Comparison

In terms of technique, Baroque and Ballet differ significantly. In Baroque dancing, steps are often performed on one leg while the other leg remains extended; this is not commonly seen in ballet as it requires a great deal of strength and control to hold such poses for long periods of time.

Additionally, many steps are performed with both feet together or apart; this “changing weight” technique is rarely seen in ballet since it disrupts the flow of movement. In contrast to Baroque’s intricate footwork patterns and complex arm movements, Ballet emphasizes jumps, leaps and turns that require tremendous athleticism but also create an ethereal look when executed correctly.

Aesthetically Speaking

The two styles also differ aesthetically: Baroque dancing is about creating a stately look that conveys power and elegance; whereas Ballet focuses more on gracefulness and poise. The costumes worn by dancers performing each style also help to distinguish them from one another: While a typical Ballet costume consists of light-coloured fabric with multiple layers of tulle for a floaty effect; Baroque costumes tend to be more ornate featuring heavy fabrics such as velvet or brocade with elaborate embroidery details.


In conclusion, there are many differences between Baroque Dancing and Ballet that make them unique styles of dance. Although they share some similarities such as their use of music as accompaniment; their techniques, aesthetics and costumes all contribute to making them distinctively different forms of artistry.