Countries that Banned Dance

Last month (August 22), we shared a Facebook post about countries that have banned ballet dancing (Germany, Sweden, Japan, Kuwait, Iran, Afghanistan). Well, we have decided to dig deeper into more details on why these countries have banned dancing all together. Some countries, like Germany and Sweden, have banned dancing for a specific period of time or under specific conditions.



Germany’s banning of dancing is more of an anachronism issue than an actual threat to society or dancers. Dancing, especially in public, is only banned during Easter weekend and Christmas Eve as a respectful act for the Holidays. Although this happens to be a national law, some 3 of the state’s only abide by the rule for a portion of the day. Some of Germany’s states even prohibit public display of music all together.



Sweden is another country where its banning of dancing is more of an anachronism issue rather than a threat to dancers. Unlike Germany, however, the public dancing is prohibited all year round. If bars, clubs, or restaurants wanted to offer a dancing safe heaven, they would need a dancing permit. The reason for this is because authorities believe dancing creates chaos and must be regulated.



After WWII, Japanese authorities banned dancing since nightclubs tended to turn into “hotbeds for prostitution.” In order for clubs to allow dancing, they also have to apply for a dance permit. Even though this has been in the books for many years, some authorities tend to be more flexible to the rules.



Kuwait’s strict views against dancing are believed to be “symptoms” of the Islamist past. Dancing, including jumping and head banging, is prohibited even at concerts. Fans of artist are limited to swaying and hand clapping at concerts.



Post Iranian Revolution, women have been banned from dancing in public, co-ed dance, and wearing  costumes that expose skin.



Afghanistan has banned public dancing many years ago and listening to music all together. However, some areas allow bacha bazi (boys for play) in private homes.


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