How did you invent DanceWriting?
DanceWriting was a Precursor to SignWriting


How did I invent DanceWriting? It happened from age 15 to 23. I was in professional ballet training. But my mind got stimulated by an old and unused dance notation system I had seen in a history book, that used stick was called the Zorn system (by Friedrich Albert Zorn in the 1800's). So when I had no choice but to sit and watch rehearsals, because of illness, I started to write what I saw the dancers do in the rehearsal, using my own form of stick figures. Slowly I did more and more until I had a real notation system, based on stick figures, but nothing like the Zorn became my own, and it was for my own personal use only, from age 15 until age 23. At that time, my first textbook on DanceWriting was published and I was invited to teach the Royal Danish Ballet in my system, and from that moment on, it was a public system used by others...That was in 1974. At that time we called it Sutton Movement Shorthand, but it soon was called Sutton DanceWriting. Then SignWriitng started soon after that, in the same year...1974...

Valerie Sutton

SignWriting List
April 16, 2005

For more information...

The History web page is:

On that web page, there are many articles to read.

The first article is:

1. 1966-1974
DanceWriting Begins
Precursor to SignWriting

Please feel free to write if you have questions.


The Deaf Action Committee
For SignWriting

The DAC, P.O. Box 517, La Jolla,
California, 92038-0517, USA

Voice: (858) 456-0098
Fax: (858) 456-0020


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