trina, i believe, just as a piece of general knowledge, that the '8th-grade reading level assumption' by the popular press is commonly accepted -and often seems generous to me, when you look at the calibre of letters to the editor ! - but of course that depends on the publication.
<P>in answer to your significant question: WHO DO WE WRITE FOR? we write for our readers.<P>i am lucky - i write for australia's dance community, since dance australia is the only national dance magazine in australia (like your Dance Magazine), so i have a dance-sophisticated audience of connoisseurs, and can have the luxury of writing accordingly. this means i can go into depths and details that the general audience wouldn't understand, and don't need to.<P>if/when i write for a different audience, i write differently.<P>and for THAT general audience, there is NO difference between what 'they' understand by the terms 'modern' or 'contemporary' in regard to dance. people read quite superficially - especially the daily newspapers.<P>(by the way, i have posted you a message on that musical theatre dance thread you started a while ago.)