Writing Language

SAT Writing and Language Practice Test 7

Questions 34-44 refer to the following information.

Did the Rite Cause a Riot?

It is commonly understood that at the premiere of Igor Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring on May 29, 1913, the shocking nature of the ballet caused a riot to break out in the audience. The music started with an unnaturally high bassoon solo, which elicited shouts and jeers from the audience almost immediately. The furor only rose when the dancers from the Ballets Russes took the stage and began the jerky, convulsive movements of Vaslav Nijinsky's 34 choreography. The choreography was shocking because it was not characteristic of the grace and fluidity typically expected from ballet. A fight soon 35 broke up amidst the spectators, the orchestra was pelted with vegetables thrown by outraged audience members, and the police were called to restore order.

There are many theories 36 as to what caused the audience of The Rite of Spring to react so strongly. It may have been the dissonant nature of Stravinsky's music, with its constantly changing rhythms and jarring percussion, or the purposefully awkward, ungraceful movements of the dancers. The theme of the ballet 37 itself was a pagan ritual in which a virgin sacrifices herself to the god of spring, may also have upset some viewers. The negative reception was summed up by a 38 review, in Le Figaro, that proclaimed "We are sorry to see an artist such as M. Stravinsky involve himself in this disconcerting adventure."

Although several dozen eyewitness accounts of the evening exist, they are often contradictory and do little 39 to sort of exactly what happened in the Theatre des Champs-Elysees that night. In fact, if one makes a timeline of first-person accounts of the Rite's premiere, descriptions of the level of disruption and violence increase as the accounts get further away from the actual event. 40 On the other hand, it's likely that stories of the riot have gotten exaggerated over time.

[1] Scholars have also recently begun to suspect that the uproar may have been planned. [2] It is possible that he actually planted someone to start shouting, but more likely he simply set up an expectation for controversy. [3] There was impassioned debate in Paris in the early years of the 20th century between traditionalists and modernists that was 41 exemplified by the debate over the Eiffel Tower: modernists saw it as a mark of progress, while traditionalists saw it as a monstrosity. [4] Diaghilev likely caused members of both groups 42 that believed that others would react strongly to The Rite of Spring. [5] Serge Diaghilev, the founder of the Ballets Russes, was a savvy entrepreneur who understood that any publicity is good publicity. [6] From such charged expectations, it is 43 not unsurprising that controversy arose. 44

34. Which choice most effectively combines the sentences at the underlined portion?


36. Which choice best establishes the main idea of the paragraph?





41. The writer wants to add a supporting detail to explain the different views of the traditionalists and the modernists. Which choice best accomplishes this goal?


43. Which choice most effectively signals that the result the author mentions was expected?

44. To make this paragraph most logical, sentence 5 should be placed

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