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Distinguished Scholar and Ambassador-at-Large
National Museum of African American History and Culture
Dr. John Edward Hasse
National Museum of American History

Dance and Music

Dance and music, music and dance. One inevitably happens in the presence of the other. Even in dances with no music, the absence of music is felt, and the dancers nonetheless keep a beat or tune in their head or feet.  We describe particularly enjoyable music as being "foot-tappingly good," calling out our desire to move to the music.

Highlights of the Smithsonian's Collections Featuring Music and Spirituality

Music and spirituality are intricately related, with spirituality often being the inspiration for the creation of music, and music so often creating the desired atmosphere for a spiritual occasion. 

While spirituality is not necessarily experienced through religion, many people use religion as a conduit for their everyday spirituality. The objects selected here help demonstrate the relationship between music and many of the world's largest religions. 


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