Dance Avec Moi specialises in all styles of Ballroom & Latin dances. The dances are divided into two categories, known as Standard (or "Ballroom") and Latin American.
The Waltz was born in the suburbs of Vienna and in the alpine region of Austria. As early as the seventeenth century, waltzes were played in the ballrooms of the Hapsburg court. The weller, or turning dances, were danced by peasants in Austrian Bavaria even before that time. The basic waltz steps create the image of a box on the floor and is known for its three beat count.
The Tango, form Argentina, is derived from the Cuban habanera, the Argentine milonga, and candombe, and is said to contain elements from the African community in Buenos Aires, influenced both by ancient African rhythms and the music from Europe. The present forms were developed in Argentina from the mid-19th century, but there are earlier written records of Tango dances in Cuba and Spain. Like the music, the Tango is based on Staccato and Legato movement and is considered one of the sexiest ballroom dances, due to the intimate character of the dance. Even though the Tango comes from a Latin-American country, within the Ballroom dance it is part of the ballroom dances (Waltz, Foxtrot...), not the Latin dances (Samba, Cha-Cha...). There are three different Tango forms - the International Tango, American style Tango, and the Argentinean Tango.
A beautiful and elegant dance, the Viennese Waltz is the classic waltz seen in many movies. It only has a few steps, and its beauty comes from the constant turning and graceful movement across the floor. Like the English Waltz, it has its roots in the Viennese high society of the 1700s.
The Foxtrot premiered in 1974, the exact origin of the name of the dance is unclear, although one theory is that it took its name from vaudeville actor Harry Fox. Some credit African-American dancers as the source of the Foxtrot who saw the dance danced by African Americans for fifteen years at an exclusive colored club. W.C Handy (Father of the Blues) notes in his autobiography that his song "The Memphis Blues" was the inspiration for the Foxtrot. During breaks from the fast paced Castle Walk and One-Step, Vernon and Irene Castle's music director, James Reese Europe, would slowly play the Memphis Blues. The Castles were intrigued by the rhythm and Jim asked why they didn't create a slow dance to go with it. The Castles introduced what they then called the "Bunny Hug" in a magazine article. Shortly after, they went aboard and, in mid-ocean, sent a wireless to the magazine to change the name of the dance from "Bunny Hug" to the "Foxtrot". It was subsequently standardized by Arthur Murray.
The Quickstep originated in the mid 19th century as a military exercise. The dance was developed in England in the early 20th century and was influenced by the Fast Foxtrot and Charleston. The Quickstep dance is the fastest of the competitive ballroom dances with fast footwork and yet a very cool calm and collected upper body. The Charleston's "Flapper feet" are very apparent in the Quickstep and the upright posture of the dance is taken from the tight "corset" era of the roaring twenties. Like the Lindy Hop, the Quickstep is upbeat and all about joy.
The Cha Cha is a dance of Cuban origin. Most Latin dance like the Cha Cha were given life by a mix of jazz and African beats. The Cha Cha became popular in the 1950's and ha strong roots to the Mambo. The Cha Cha was the result of the Mambo being simplified and slowed down. In both dances the forward and backward break are done on count 2. Most social dances in the Caribbean have African roots because of the slave trade. The many ships arriving from Africa brought with them a wealth of musical heritage, which strongly influenced all Latin music.
The Samba is a very old Brazilian dance, also with an African heritage. It has been around for almost 100 years. The Brazilians use the Samba to celebrate pre-Lenten. The Samba has many different variations from the slow and sultry Bossa Nova, the moderately fast Bahia, to the fastest hip shaking Batucada.
Known as "the dance of love", the Rumba is a slow, sensuous dance of passion which originated from Cuba. In the 1920s, an orchestra headed by Xavier Cugat playing the Coconut Grove in Los Angeles brought the Latin dances to life and made the Rumba famous.
The Paso Doble is a Spanish dance based on the bull fight influenced by Flamenco. The heritage of Flamenco started hundreds of years go all the way in India and has strong relationships between Bollywood and Balinese dance. This dance is all about strength, pride, and passion. Students can play the role of the Matador, Cape, Toreador, or a Flamenco dancer. The changing of roles within the dance makes the Paso Doble both fun and exciting.
The jive came from dances like the Jitterbug and Lindy Hop which were popular with American GIs in the 1940s. Jive is very fast with lots of kicks, spins and syncopated actions. Typically danced to rock and roll music the dance has bags of energy and is a great workout!
OTHER STYLES AT DANSE AVEC MOI
SALSA, BACHATA, MERENGUE, KIZOMBA
EAST COAST SWING, WEST COAST SWING, HUSTLE