Swing Dance Competition 2 - Kaylin Spaeth In the Swing of...

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Kaylin Spaeth In the Swing of Things 11/5/13 Swing Competition Swing Dance Competition During the days of slavery in the United States the African slaves would have to find things to entertain themselves. This is when swing dancing was developed. They would dance with movements that contained elements from their African culture along with music with an African element. Then in the 1920’s swing dancing in public started to become more popular when African Americans would dance in the streets to contemporary jazz music. After this started happening competition started to evolve in the swing dance community and has continued to evolve through today. The first style of competition in swing dance was done right in the streets. Dancers would paper clip studio names and phone numbers to their backs while they were performing. By doing this they were able to get their names out to the public and hopefully draw in people that would like to take lessons. In order to receive publicity the dancers had to start making their dances more and more attention grabbing, so they would add moves that were wilder and crazier. In later years the Savoy Ballroom started hosting shows consisting of swing dancing. Groups would work hard to be placed in the show and had to continue to keep improving their dances. People would pay to watch the shows that were being put on so the Savoy Ballroom wanted the best of the best performers. To make his group more competitive Frankie Manning added aerials to the Lindy Hop in the 1930s. This had never been done before, so the group he was a part of received more attention than any of the other groups that performed in the Ballroom.
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The competitions in the ballrooms have always been challenging and will continue to be. The main audience is the judges. There may be other people watching, but the judges are who determines the winner. When judging they want specific steps, styles, and techniques that are precise with a great flair to it. This dance is very rigorous and the dancers must appear to have a positive attitude while they are on the stage from the second they appear to when they disappear.
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  • Fall '13
  • EmmaBeasley
  • Social dance, Lindy Hop, Competitive Dance, Frankie Manning, swing dance

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