of the Israeli Dance Catalogue and Database
Jack Steel was born in Poland
in 1946 and migrated to Melbourne, Australia in 1958.
He is a graduate of Melbourne University in Engineering B.E. (1st class Hons.), M.E. and Ph.D.
After graduating Dr. Steel worked in Telecom Australia for 19 years in
the area of Digital transmission.
He started Israeli Dancing in 1994 and has been a keen devotee since then.
To overcome his late entry
into the field and assist in his quest to learn as many dances as possible
he developed a short hand notation for dancing.
This enables him to write down the steps in real time as they are taught
thereby assisting his recollection.
To date more than 1000 dances have been encoded which are accessible on
the on-line database.
As an adjunct he began the Israeli Dance Catalogue
initially for his own reference and began to produce multiple hard print copies to
satisfy local demand.
To create a more accurate and complete catalogue he enlisted the help
of his co-authors, his dance colleagues and has interrogated every choreographer
who has visited Melbourne since the mid 1990's!
The Catalogue has now become
the interactive Israeli Dance Databasewhich is consulted by teachers,
choreographers and dancers worldwide.
Israeli Dances.com is proud to have initiated and maintained the hosting of Jack's work online.
It is a unique global resource which lists every recognised Israeli dance created worldwide - more than 5000 at last count - together with all their sources.
In 2004 Jack was contacted by
the Artistic Director of Chunky Move Dance Company, Gideon Obarzanek, and was
one of the five men who was chosen to be part of the performence of "I want to dance better at parties" which premiered in Melbourne the same year.
Jack worked closely with the company's dancers and they perform two of the great Israeli dances, Debka Gid and Al Salsalim