Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Ermine and Pearls- The Quickstep vs. The Charleston


I confess that although I am not generally a fan of reality television I do enjoy Dancing With the Stars. It's nice that different styles of dance have made a resurgence (I'm looking forward to trying some Swing myself soon), and the video above showcases two of those styles, and, coincidentally, their use on DWtS. Which one do you prefer?

The Quickstep
Developed iin the 1920s as a faster Foxtrot, the Quickstep actually owes some of its steps to the Charleston. Meant to be danced to ragtime music the basic formula is a combination of chasses, quick jerky movements of the feet, and solid armholds punctuated by brief slower pauses and slides. It was a smooth, refined dance that worked well for more conservative dancers, in contrast to the brash youthfullness of...

...The Charleston
It is both a song and a dance style, though the dance can be performed to other songs. Originating on Broadway in Runnin' Wild in October of 1923, it is thought to have been inspired by black dockworkers in the city for which it was named. Beginning with lazy, loose movements and becoming faster and wilder the dance was associated with flappers and speakeasies who flouted the establishment and prohibition, thus being largely a youthful craze. It helped to give birth to the later Lindy Hop style of dance, and there is even a hybrid called the Lindy Charleston.

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