Ballet d'action

hybrid genre of expressive and symbolic ballet that emerged during the 18th century, aiming to free the conveyance of a story from dialogue, relying simply on quality of movement to communicate actions, motives, and emotions

Ballet d'action is an 18th-century ballet movement. It was started by French choreographer Jean Georges Noverre in 1760. The movement focused on character and emotional expression through dancers' bodies and faces, instead of elaborate costumes and props. Noverre started the movement because he was unhappy with the attention focused on technical expertise. He expressed his views in his book Lettres sur la danse et les ballets. He stated there that the purpose of ballet is "to represent characters and express their feelings" through movement rather than costume.[1]

  1. "Lettre sur la danse - Noverre".