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Ballroom Dances

Foxtrot: While most people think that Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers created the Foxtrot, it was really a vaudeville performer named Harry Fox who introduced this fun, theatrical dance to the world. Foxtrot dancers travel around the perimeter of the room in a counterclockwise direction in a basic rhythm of slow-slow-quick-quick. Still a classic dance for wedding receptions, the Foxtrot is a true American favorite.

Viennese Waltz: Made popular in the 1880s by the invigorating music of Johann Strauss, the Viennese Waltz is a very fast version of the waltz at a tempo of about 180 beats a minute. This dance is characterized by its fast pace and continuous circling. A beautiful dance to watch and perform, the Viennese Waltz is a glamorous, uplifting, whirling experience for everyone to enjoy.

Waltz: The Waltz, with its 3/4 rhythms and strong accent on the first beat, was born in the suburbs of Vienna. When the dance was first introduced in the early 19th century, people were shocked since it was the first ballroom dance where the man put his hand on a woman's waist! The Waltz gained in popularity and quickly became one of the most popular of all dances. This easy and flowing dance is still commonly seen at weddings and other social events.

Polka: Originating from Bohemia in the 1800s, the Polka has an unforgettable rhythm — da-da-dum, da-da-dum. The name is Czech for "half-step," much used in the dance. The Polka is danced in pairs either face-to-face or standing side-by-side. Polka music has a 2/4 beat and is notable for its happy sound. The Polka has consistently remained a very popular dance worldwide.

East Coast Swing: Back in the good old days of Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry, the East Coast Swing originated as a simplified 6-count triple step dance. The East Coast Swing dance pattern moves smoothly either forward/back or side to side while circling freely around the floor. The basic step is triple step, triple step, rock step. Danced to a wide variety of music, you can "swing" to almost anything!

The Hustle: The 1970s was the time to do the Hustle! Predated by the line dance with the same name, the Hustle exploded onto the scene after John Travolta danced his way to stardom in the famous movie, Saturday Night Fever. The Hustle is a fast moving, energetic dance characterized by its many turns. The lady spins almost constantly while her partner draws her close and sends her away. Although disco has come and gone, the hustle is here to stay!

West Coast Swing: The official state dance of California, the West Coast Swing originated from the Savoy Style Lindy dance. Brought to Hollywood by Dean Collins, a famous movie dancer and choreographer, this dance soon became popular in California nightclubs during the 1930s and 1940s. The West Coast Swing is known for its "dancing in a slot" appearance where the man dances in place while the woman travels back and forth.

The Lindy Hop: It all started at the Savoy ... or so the story goes. While "Shorty George" Snowden, a dance enthusiast, watched some couples dancing at New York City's famous Savoy Ballroom in the late 1920s, someone asked him what dance they were doing. George glanced down at a newspaper opened up to an article about Charles Lindbergh's flight across the ocean, titled "Lindy Hops the Atlantic," and quickly answered: "The Lindy Hop." A dance was born! The Lindy Hop, always fun to dance, is wild, spontaneous, jumpy, and jazzy!

The Two Step: The country music dance called the "Texas Two-Step" is a modified Foxtrot — some call it a Foxtrot with a swagger! It started as a simple barn dance and is notable for two quick steps and two slow steps. Starting with the popularity of movies like Urban Cowboy, country-western partner dancing came back in style in the late 1980s. Gliding your feet across the floor, the two-step is always fun dance to learn and enjoy with your partner!

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