Swing Dance dates back as far as the 1920’s, where the African American community were dancing to up beat contemporary style of Jazz music, they discovered the Charleston and the Lindy Hop.
The three main styles of swing dance are Lindy Hop, West coast swing and East coast swing. Other popular styles are North Dallas push, Huston whip, Carolina shag, Colligan shag, St Louis Shag, Bop, Hand dancing and Swing out. Just to name a few.
Lindy Hop continued into the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s and is featured in many movies of the era featuring Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers with Frankie Manning and Dean Collins (whose style would lead to the creation of West Coast Swing), and Hal Takier and the Ray Rand Dancers. Traditional Lindy Hop in its purest form is found in many US locations and in Sweden. Swedish Lindy Hoppers preserve much of the old-style technique which was passed on to them by Frankie Manning, through various visits in the 1980s and 1990s
East Coast Swing is a simpler 6-count variation of Lindy Hop, that evolved with swing-band music of the 1940s and the work of the Arthur Murry dance studios in the 1940s. It is also known as Six-count Swing, Triple-Step Swing, or Single-Time Swing. East Coast Swing has very simple structure and footwork along with basic moves and styling. It is popular for its simple nature and is often danced to slow, medium, or fast tempo jazz, blues, or rock and roll. Occasionally, Rockabilly, aka Rock-a-billy, is mistaken for East Coast Swing, but Rockabilly is more closely related to Western Swing.
West Coast Swing was developed in the 1940s, as a stylistic variation on Lindy Hop. It is a slotted and danced to a wide variety of music including: blues, rock and roll, country western, smooth and cool jazz. It is popular throughout the United States and Canada but was uncommon in Europe and most of Asia until the 21st Century. West-coast-swing communities are growing in Australia, Brazil, France, India, New Zealand, Ukraine, Romania and the United Kingdom, and elsewhere.
The Savoy Ballroom in New York was an immediate success opening in 1926. With its block-long dance floor and raised double bandstand intact. Nightly dancing attracted New Yorks best dancers. Stimulated by the presence of great dancers and the best swinging bands, The night life was swinging from then on.
Although these photographs show models with high heals, the truth is to really dance you’ll find it painfully impossible to perform wearing high heals like these.
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