The origin of belly dance is an actively debated subject among dance enthusiasts. It descended from a religious dance that was performed during fertility rituals by temple priestesses. As early as 1000 B.C., temple engravings depicting dancers have been found in Mesopotamia, Egypt, and Greece. It descended from ancient Egyptian social dances.
It originated in India over 5000 years ago, and had spread throughout the Middle East with the migrations of the Gypsy tribes also called Roma in Europe, Ghawazee in Egypt, and Nawar in India. The Gypsies eventually reached Europe where one of the most famous Gypsy dance styles was born - Flamenco. Many moves in modern Flamenco are still very similar to belly dance. Perhaps the richness of Middle Eastern dance tradition and its universal appeal can be attributed to the blending of many various sources, cultures, and dance styles.
Bhangra is a lively form of music and dance that originated in the Punjab region in Southeast Asia. As many Bhangra lyrics reflect the long and often tumultuous history of the Punjab, knowledge of Punjabi history offers important insights into the meaning of the music. While Bhangra began as a part of harvest festival celebrations, it eventually became a part of such diverse occasions as weddings and New Year celebrations. Moreover, during the last thirty years, Bhangra has enjoyed a surge in popularity worldwide, both in traditional form and as a fusion with genres such as hip -hop, house, and reggae. As Bhangra continues to move into mainstream culture, an understanding of its history and tradition helps to appreciate it.
The name “Blues Dancing” originated at the world renowned Herrang Dance Camp in Sweden in the 1980s. Blues dance, like Lindy Hop and Swing, came into being as a reflection of swing and jazz music. Many aspects of Blues dance (for example, call and response, emotional intensity and expressiveness, and tension and release) are directly related to the music to which it is danced. There are many types of blues music, rural, urban, up-tempo, slow, electric, gutbucket, delta, modern, etc., all with very different nuances and emotions.
Blues dance enables intense individuality in expressing the music. It really is all about communication, emphasizing that the music, not the dancer, leads the dance; we are simply the interpreters. Blues dance demonstrates the passion of the entire range of human emotions, not just the sensual ones. If you don’t have a visceral reaction to the music, your partner, and the environment, then you are missing the wonders of dancing blues.
The term ‘Bollywood’ in dance covers almost any style of dance featured in these extravagant musical movies. Some of the numerous styles of dance featured in films, either in fusion form or in pure forms, include Kathak, Bharatnatyam, Odissi, Garba & Bhangra as well as Belly-dance, Latin, Hip hop, Contempory and Jazz just to name a few! Bollywood dance itself is a style which encompasses all of these styles and more, as well as having its own unique flavour and merit.
Bollywood dance is now so popular in western culture that Bollywood dance classes are offered in most major cities around the globe. Bollywood dance has also gained recognition in the world of western dance and is now featured on shows such as ‘got talent’, ‘so you think you can dance’ and ‘dancing with the stars.
The origins of western contemporary dance can be traced back to the beginning of the 20th century. While the big names in modern dance all date from this time period, the influences that inspired these contemporary dance founders go back for centuries, and are not limited to the western world.
Contemporary dance is officially the name given to a series of dance styles including modern dance. Highly interpretive in its choreography, contemporary dance often includes an innate focus on alignment, oppositional movement, raw emotions and systematic breathing.
Early freestyle dancing began in the 1970s on street corners and public places where dancers would show off their improvisational skills that resembled modern-day break dancing. By the 1980s as the music became more popular and accessible, more stand up moves were incorporated into the dance. The birth of freestyle dancing really began as disco died.
Freestyle is spontaneous and individual. There are no required or structured movements that must be learned. It is an extremely popular form of dancing both for recreational purposes and as a highly competitive sport. This is a dance style enjoyed by boys and girls.
Freestyle dancing is popular with dancers who like to express themselves. It gives them the freedom to throw their arms up in a joyous gesture if the song makes them happy. It gives them the freedom to let the whole body dance, even the head and fingers.
The first mention of hip hop dance dates back to the 70’s when some new moves were introduced to the dance world to accompany the funky sounds of hip hop music that was also being discovered. Most popular among African Americans and Latin Americans at first, there are many races who now lay claim to defining this diverse dance phenomenon.
Across the United States from the ‘Boogie Down’ Bronx, New York to the ‘Beat Street’ corners of Compton, California, young people everywhere took to this new style of dancing that included such feats as breaking, popping, locking, gliding, ticking, vibrating and krumping. In the earlier days, some hip hop dance moves such as the Humpty Dance were made popular by hip hop artists who had created the songs from which these dances were derived.
Jazz dance is often credited as an American creation, however in actuality it originates from African American vernacular dance that came about during the late 1800s. The original steps were exemplified out in the plantations, and jazz dance itself came about as a crossbreed of American culture, European jigs and the music and movement tradition.
Knowing the history of jazz dance has helped dancers from all over the world better understand and experience an art form they desire to excel at. Europe lent elegance to the technique, Africa gave it its movement and rhythm, and America allowed it to have the exposure and growing popularity that has sustained it as a cherished dance style today.
The history of "Salsa" dance is peppered with hearsay and contradiction. In the 1970s, adoption of the term "Salsa" reduced the linguistic and cultural barriers to mainstream adoption of Latin music and dance.Salsa refers to a fusion of informal dance styles having roots in the Caribbean (especially in Cuba and Puerto Rico), Latin and North America. The dance originated through the mixture of Mambo, Danzn, Guaguanc, Cuban Son, and other typical Cuban dance forms. Salsa is danced to Salsa music. There is a strong African influence in the music as well as the dance.
The name "Salsa" is the Spanish word for sauce, connoting (in American Spanish) a spicy flavor. The Salsa aesthetic is more flirtatious and sensuous than its ancestor, Cuban Son. Salsa also suggests a "mixture" of ingredients, though this meaning is not found in most stories of the term's origin.
This pattern might be quick-quick-slow, taking two beats to gradually transfer the weight, or quick-quick-quick allowing a tap or other embellishment on the vacant beat. It is conventional in salsa for the two musical measures to be considered as one, so the count goes from 1 to 8 over two musical bars.
The term "semi folk dance" is sometimes applied to dances of historical importance in European culture and history; typically originated before 20th century. For other cultures the terms "ethnic dance" or "traditional dance" are sometimes used, although the latter terms may encompass ceremonial dances.
The steps and moves of semi folk dance are not as complex or intricate as pure classical forms. However, the authenticity of the Indian dance form is preserved and students are able to grasp these lighter Semi folk dances easily. Semi folk dances are fun and fluid. This type of dance breaks the stylized structures and forms of the classical dance, andadopts a more contemporary feel and steps.
Street Dance is believed to have originated in urban streets of America. Street dances, more formally known as vernacular dance, are dance styles that evolved outside of dance studios in any available open space, such as streets, dance parties, block parties, parks, school yards, raves, and nightclubs.
They are often improvisational and social in nature, encouraging interaction and contact with spectators and the other dancers. These dances generally evolve out of urban and suburban spaces and are a part of the vernacular culture of that geographical area. Some examples of street dance include B-boying (or break dancing), which originated in New York City, and Melbourne Shuffle which originated in Melbourne, Australia.
The tango (from Latin tango, meaning "touch") is a partner dance that originated in the 1890s along the Río de la Plata, the natural border between Uruguay and Argentina, and soon spread to the rest of the world.
Tango is earthy and dramatic. Although walking movements dominate, Tango walks, having a "stalking" or "sneaking" character, are unlike the walks of other ballroom dances. Movements are sometimes slow and slithery, and other times sharp and staccato, such as a quick foot flick or a sharp head snap to promenade position. Tango has the same counter clockwise flow of movement around the dance floor, but with a lesser sense of urgency in comparison to the smoother and more continuous ballroom dances. American Style Tango, especially at highly-developed skill levels, makes great use of open and alternate dance positions to further showcase Tango's dramatic nature.