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Choreography is the composition and arrangement of dances; the general art principles of design, like harmony, unity, variety, repetition, proportion, contrast, sequence, transition, balance and climax, must be used to create an aesthetic choreography. A ballet's choreography could be based on sources like: a story, a musical composition, or a painting.


Choreography was once a major part of artistic productions, from the minstrel troupes of yore, to the famously elaborate song and dance numbers behind the films of Busby Berkeley in the 1930s, as well as the delightful films of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the 1940s and 50s. However, the popularity of dance in movies waned during the 60s and 70s, so that the main outlet for choreography became the stages of Broadway. By that time, a strong homosexual culture had taken hold over Broadway, so that the majority of choreographers were homosexual men. When the majority of them died from AIDS in the 1980s as a consequence of their homosexual lifestyle, choreography lost much of its status as a dramatic art form. In recent decades, the majority of choreographers have been reduced to employment in the making of the (often distasteful) dance numbers in the music videos of pop stars, who are more interested in marketing sex than the art of dance. A prime example of this was the ill-fated televised song and dance performance of Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake at the Super Bowl in 2004, which ended in a planned "wardrobe malfunction". Hardly a high moment for the esteem of choreography.