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Generally believed to have originated in Austria from a folk dance, the Waltz is a slow, graceful ballroom dance that uses beautiful music that can sometimes have a melancholy feel to it. Both the American “Smooth” and the International “Standard” versions progress counter-clockwise around the room, however in the Smooth the couple is permitted to break a “closed” hold, whereas in the Standard the couple must remain in a closed embrace. The Waltz is danced more slowly now than originally.
Tango originated first as music and then as a dance in the country of Argentina. Having influences from Spanish and African culture, the Tango is a unique dance that has many styles around the world. A bold and passionate dance with the couple in a very close hold, the Tango is a favorite of many. The Standard version is a very sharp and staccato dance, whereas the American Tango is more theatrical and athletic.
International Viennese Waltz
This is the original form of the Waltz developed during the time of the famous composer Strauss. It is a rotary dance where the dancers are constantly turning either toward their right or toward their left. Many people love this dance for its unparalleled grace and lovely music.
The Foxtrot was originally danced to fast ragtime music. Today, the dance is customarily danced to Swing music, but generally has a slower tempo. If you like Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Vic Damone, Cole Porter or other greats of the day, you will love Foxtrot. It’s a stroll through the park. When you’re dancing it, that’s exactly how you’ll feel.
To some known as a “Fast Fox”, but in actuality resembling something technically closer to Waltz, the Quickstep gradually evolved into the very dynamic dance it is today. The Quickstep is brisk and exciting as it was developed to ragtime music. This dance is characterized by fast movement punctuated by hops, skips, runs and Charleston-like foot and leg styling.