Difference Between Hip-hop and Ballet Dance (With Table)

Dance is one of the art forms in which sequential body movements are synchronized rhythmically to a theme. And most of the time, the theme would be some sort of music which carries soft or strong emotions. In fact, it is the music which inspires the Dance and folk play has been used as a tool to express social feelings and emotions to the public.

Dance is not a modern art as the early evidence for dance have been found in the tombs of Egypt, which dates back to 3300 BC. Dance is used to narrate a story or a scene, accompanied by a fancy costume and drama. There are different forms of dance. Each of the forms got originated to the needs of that particular situation.

Hip-hop vs Ballet Dance

The difference between ballet and hip-hop dance is that in ballet dance, all moves should be in line with the music, whereas hip-hop dance may not require that much precision.

Among the various forms of dance, hip-hop and ballet dance have been more popular. While seeds for ballet dance were sown during the period of renaissance, hip-hop dance got originated in the late twentieth century. Ballet dance is more formal whereas hip-hop follows a free-style approach. Ballet dance which got originated in Italy during the renaissance period got spread to France where it reached its heights. Then, it started to develop and got spread to Russia, Denmark, England and the rest of the world.

Hip-hop dance got evolved from the hip-hop music genre accompanied by many styles. It got originated in America but unlike ballet, hip-hop took less time to get spread across the globe. Television and the Internet, along with dance shows are attributed for the reason for the rapid growth.

Comparison Table Between Hip-hop and Ballet Dance

Parameters of ComparisonHip-hopBallet
DefinitionIt is a free-styling dance tracing its origin from multiple street dance styles.Ballet is a formal dance which requires strict and perfect moves done sequentially.
OriginOriginated first in Italy.The United States of America.
Time-periodIt got started during the renaissance period.It got developed in 1970.
Music StyleBreaking, Popping, Locking.Classical Music.
Special aspects of the danceThis dance style can be learned by everyone at a much quicker pace when compared to ballet dance.It requires strict coordination of movements along with the accompanying music.
PopularityMost popular among youth. 

What is Hip-hop Dance?

Hip-hop dance is a free-styling dance which got originated in America in late 1950. The roots of hip-hop dance can be traced back to various street dance styles accompanied by music genre of that time. Breaking style is the first and one of the main styles followed in hip-hop dance. Hip-hop dance usually expresses real-life stories, enriched with various experiences of life and all emotions.

In hip-hop dance, much importance is given to the freedom of expressions with breaking style. Hip-hop dance got huge attention due to the high degree of comfort which it offers to its dancers in its movement. Unlike ballet dance where strict procedures have to be followed, hip-hop does not require stern protocols.

Hip-hop dance can be learned by anyone and anywhere. Hip-hop gained its popularity mainly due to its marvelous and cool movements which were easy to practice and followed by others. Another reason for its rapid spread in popularity can be attributed to the television and internet boom during its evolution. Films of the 1980s and various television shows were the reason for its boom across the world.

What is Ballet dance?

Ballet dance is one of the earliest forms of dance which originated during the renaissance period of Italy. Later it got spread to France where it started developing to reach its height. Ballet dance requires perfect coordination and body movements to the music and it requires few physical criteria to become a ballet dancer. The physical requirements include a slim and flexible body. Constant and consistent practice is needed to become a ballet dancer.

Ballet dance acquired a different style when it started spreading to different countries. Among those styles, Russian, French, Italian and English ballet is more popular. Usually, ballet dance accompanies with classical music. Ballet dance is a formalized dance with precise steps and gestures. The co-dancer must stay in-line with the other dancer. Even a small body gesture could spoil the play.

Ballet dance got its transformation into concert dance when it got introduced in Russia. Due to its stern and precise approach, ballet dance is performed only by trained ballet dancers. Ballet dance involves a high amount of discipline which comes only by constant practice. Every movement should be co-ordinated and accurate. Ballet dance always accompanies with some kind of emotional story. The creativity and the steps made by the ballet dancers glue the audience to the show.

Main Differences Between Hip-hop and Ballet Dance

  1. Hip-hop dance is a free-style whereas ballet dance follows a perfect, co-ordinated style in a formalized manner.
  2. Ballet dance requires certain physical criteria whereas hip-hop accommodates to all kinds of people.
  3. Ballet dance takes much discipline and rigorous practice to master which is why very few people are involved in ballet dance. Hip-hop is easy to learn when compared to ballet dance.
  4. Hip-hop dance is more popular among the young generation due to its cool movements and music accompanying the dance. Ballet dance prefers more to the classical music genre.
  5. Hip-hop dance can be termed as modern dance form as it got evolved in the late twentieth century. But ballet dance has been in practice from the sixteenth century.
  6. Hip-hop does not require any professional school to master the skill. Ballet dance can be mastered correctly at a ballet school.


Ballet and hip-hop dance are two popular forms of dance which are in existence. While the movements in hip-hop dance vary a lot, perfect consistency is required in ballet dance. Moreover, ballet dance is accompanied by classical music evoking emotions, hip-hop dance follows a free-style approach.


  1. https://cpb-us-e1.wpmucdn.com/sites.psu.edu/dist/f/5180/files/2014/10/FormanNeal-Thats_the_Joint_The_Hip_Hop_Studies_Readerbook.pdf#page=522
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/07407708708571104
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