The dance has inspired countless musical compositions. This might take the form of two distinct paths: music composed for the purpose of dance, such as a Stravinsky ballet or the more popular forms such as ballroom dancing, or music inspired by dance. In whatever form, dance music implies strong pulses and patterns organized into repeated patterns. Rhythm often serves as a significant unifying force. Such is the case in much of the music heard on this recording. The most obvious example is the title work, Dance Rhythms, where rhythmic motives determine the character and structure of the piece.
There are many obvious references to dance on this recording - just considering titles alone ? reflecting differing musical styles and aesthetics. There is a Sun Dance and some Night Dances; there is the Australian Bushdance and the Mediterranean inspired Satiric Dances. Other works carry a less direct, although no less important, parallel. Masada contains direct programmatic allusions to the citizens of Masada dancing during a time of crisis. Certainly, the listener can picture the large ballrooms and dances of the big band era in Blue Shades. Perhaps one must use poetic license to hear Chester dance rather than simply leap.