Labanotation was the first effective and enduring attempt to convey the notion of dance using symbols. The word is eponymous - the originator of the system was the Austro-Hungarian Rudolf von Laban (1879-1958) who originally called it by the term "Scrifttanz" - meaning "written dance" in German. Along with others such as Ann Hutchinson Guest, he was one of the founders of modern dance. Mary Wigman and Kurt Joost were among his pupils. He is also credited with inventing eukinetics, which helps the individual dancer use their body more effectively.

Labanotation can convey various things such as movement, direction, dynamic, and the relevant body part.

Although other systems exist, it continues to be popular, and has also, more recently, found another usage in the field of robotics.

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