Dance Styles
Ballroom Dances - Waltz, Foxtrot, Tango

Waltz - Danced in ¾ time with a strong accent on the first beat and a basic pattern of 3 steps which can be learnt in a relatively short time. From the German word walzen which means to roll, turn or glide. Makes you think of flowing ball gowns, tail suits and beautiful music.

Foxtrot - The Foxtrot was created in 1914 by a gentleman called Harry Fox and has become one of the most significant of all the ballroom dances. The combination of quick and slow steps permits much more flexibility. There is more variety in this dance than any of the others and it is sometimes thought to be the hardest one to learn.

Tango - Ballroom Tango originated amongst the lower classes of Buenos Aries. Clothing was full skirts for the ladies and gauchos with high boots and spurs for the men. They wore chaps and so walked with knees flexed. Tango music is full of drama with a sharp staccato character.

Ballroom Dances - Quickstep, Viennese Waltz

Quickstep - Developed during World War 1 in suburban New York, it was initially performed by Caribbean and African dancers. It eventually made its debut in American music halls and ballrooms. While the basic figures are quite simple the tempo of the music and whole character of the dance invites a carefree interpretation of its bright rhythm.

Viennese Waltz - Formerly a court dance of the aristocrats of Austria, this is the fastest of the waltz tempos. With its smooth turns, dancers glide across the floor with grace and ease.

Latin American Dances - Cha Cha Cha, Samba, Rumba

Cha Cha Cha - Became popular in the early 1950's consisting of three quick steps (cha cha cha chasses) and two slower steps on the 1 and 2 beats. It is cheeky, playful and light hearted in character with lots of hip and leg action.

Samba - The Samba originated in Brazil and is danced during festival and carnival celebrations. Samba is a fun, happy dance which has an exciting 'bounce' action, the degree of which is not the same for all figures.

Rumba - Rumba is the spirit and soul of Latin music and dance. It can best be described as earthy, sensuous and enticing incorporating forward and backward walks, not forgetting the use of arms, wrists, hands and fingers to create the mood and character of the dance.

Latin American Dances - Paso Doble, Jive

Paso Doble - Danced in Spain to replicate the Matador (man) and cape (lady) during a bull fight. Strong forward walks known as the March make up many figures in the dance along with Spanish lines and purposeful arm movements. It is intense, dramatic and a very focused dance.

Jive - Danced in 4/4 time with accents on the 2nd and 4th beat. The Jive is full of energy and lots of speed. In addition to the steps are flicks and kicks, sharp turns and interesting arm movements.

Other Dances - Rock 'n' Roll, Argentine Tango, Salsa

Rock 'n' Roll - Originated in the USA in the 1950's. A form of popular music arising from and incorporating a variety of musical styles. With fast spins and kicks Rock 'n' Roll has influenced lifestyles and fashion and when dancing you feel energised, excited and happy. Once you start you don't want to stop.

Argentine Tango - This is not just a dance of a couple, it is the way that two bodies move in complete harmony becoming one body. The man leads his lady into walks or to change direction, to invade his personal space and to interrupt her movement. Initially danced in the slums of Argentina in the late 19th century, the Tango style has evolved to the popular dance it is today.

Salsa - Originated in Cuba, Salsa is a pattern of six steps danced over eight counts of music with many interesting turns and spins. It is danced throughout the Hispanic world with influences of many places within it. Salsa is fast, energetic, lively and above all lots of fun.

Other Dances - Freestyle Dancing, Street Dancing

Freestyle Dancing - John Travolta and Saturday Night Fever made disco dancing the 'in' thing in the 1970's. Today it is as popular as ever but using current 'chart' music to fast or slow rhythms. Freestyle Dancing gives the dancer the opportunity to express themselves in their own individual style.

Street Dancing - Street Dancing is one of the fastest growing and changing contemporary dance forms. It is the term used to describe dance styles that evolved outside studios in every day spaces such as streets, school yards, raves and nightclubs. It is a set of steps, attitudes and gestures, the spirit of which lies in its versatility and accessibility. The technique is far less stringent than in other forms of dance and relies more upon an individual style and rhythm. Whether you are interested in breaking, krumping or video dance the more relaxed you are the easier it will be to adopt the range of movements required in this fun and exciting style of dance.

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