From the Foxtrot to the Waltz, if you’re ready to learn ballroom dancing, we offer group classes, and private lessons to suit your needs.
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Foxtrot originated in 1913 when a Vaudeville performer by the name of Harry Fox performed a little “trot” which appealed to dance teachers in New York. Through many changes Foxtrot is now comprised of soft and fluid linear movements, and at the higher levels, is one of the most difficult dances to master. Foxtrot and Waltz share many moves in common, with timing and style differences. Foxtrot is danced to medium slow to slow 4/4 time music and is characterized by the “Fred Astaire/Ginger Rogers” look.
International vs. American Style Foxtrot
In the European style this dance is not danced in “apart positions” as is the American version. For example: Underarm Turns would be American style only.
Another International (or European) dance. As the name implies, the Quickstep is a very quick and lively dance, comprised of running steps, hops, skips and kicks.
The dance began as a quick version of Foxtrot mixed with the Charleston, and has a Jazz music influence. The music is of a very fast tempo in 4/4 time. Dixieland jazz is perfect for quickstep, as is the faster swing music.
Tango evolved in the bordellos of Buenos Aires, Argentina and was refined during its travels to Europe and America.
Tango is danced in a slightly different manner than the other smooth (non-Latin) dances. The closed hold is closer, with the lady’s left hand hooked under the right arm of the man,with the man’s right arm further around the back of the lady. This creates a firmer hold for quick staccato action and stylized poses.
American Tango allows for embellishments like Underarm Turns, while International Tango is danced totally in closed hold. Both are danced to 4/4 music with 8 ct. phrasing.
Ballroom Tango is more stylized than the more intimate and improvisational Argentine Tango, but still retains the tension and sensuality of the original.
Viennese Waltz is characterized by swift right and left turns, with hesitations every so often to change direction, or to allow the dancers a pause to catch their breath and to strike a “line” (pose). This is the oldest of the ballroom dances, originating in the 1700’s and becoming popular in the early 1800’s. The Viennese Waltz is one of the most challenging dances to master, but also one of the most exhilarating to dance. Viennese Waltz is danced to 3/4 time music with a fast tempo
Ballroom Slow Waltz
Over time, the lilting 3/4 time music of the Viennese waltz was slowed down for less formal ballrooms and the dance adapted to the slower tempo. This is the dance we think of when we hear “waltz” or 3/4 time music. A more varied set of steps is performed at the slower tempo, but the dance still contains the lilting sway of the quicker Viennese. The American version of the dance will sometimes be danced apart from the partner, as in Underarm Turns and side by side positions. At its higher levels (SILVER 1 2 3) we suggest dance experience of 6 Months to 1 year in basic Waltz.
American Style is open and flowing, with underarm turns, etc.
Never releases the partner to an apart position as does it’s American counterpart. Dance figures (patterns) are also different.
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