Tap Dance

Tap dance is a dynamic and very exciting medium of dance where the performers wear special shoes that have a metal “tap” on either the toe or the heel. They then proceed to use their feet similar to that of a drum to follow a beat and some quick rhythmic patterns. Did you know that “tap dancing” comes from the sound of the foot’s metal tap against the hard floor?

Different Tap Dance Styles

Perhaps the most renowned and the most common tap dancing style everyone is familiar with is the classical tap. These type of tap dancers not only use their feet to generate beats, but they also know how to make use of their upper body to mesh in jazz or ballet-like motions as they perform. There are also tap dancers who love to utilize their feet and tap shoes to the limit; hence, they use all the different subtle ways their shoes can produce sound and are called “hoofers”.

A common characteristic of all tap dancers is their ability to be very light on their feet, to the point that they seem to be bouncing on the hard floor. They follow the music’s melody first, then give emphasis to the beat second.

Tap Shoes

Much like other musical instruments, there are different brands of tap shoes, each with their own unique way of producing a tapping sound. The shoes themselves are also available in different styles, tailored for a specific function or to complement the rest of the ensemble. Some of the shoes are flat, while others have a raised heel, reinforced with metal. They can come in black, beige or white.

Tap shoe manufacturers and models have also made unique tap characteristics in their shoes. They can have a low weight and a smaller footprint, or the metal taps can be made heavier and fuller, covering the shoe’s edge more. The tone is dependent on the metal’s weight and surface shape, which can be either convex or concave.

Basic Tap Steps

Tap dance is a fun art of dancing, but mastering it takes hours and hours of both patience and practice. Tap lessons that teach beginners are mostly focused on single tap steps to ease them into the wonderful world of tap dancing. Some of the basic steps that will be taught are the ball change, the shuffle, the flap and the brush. When the dancers master the basics and are able to consistently perform these steps, they can form various combinations from the pool of basic taps they have learned.

It takes some time before the tap dancers can learn how to produce a crisp, clear sound while tapping their shoes on the floor. The correct number of taps should also be carefully maintained, as an extra tap can ruin the melody and overall rhythm of the dance.

Various tone levels may also be achieved using certain tap dance techniques. The balance and body weight should be centered slightly forward, with most of the tapping done on the balls of a tap dancer’s feet. In order to maintain flexibility and quickness of taps, the ankles and the knees should be limber and relaxed all the time. Sometimes it helps if tap dancers imagine they are dancing on a glass platform.

 

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Hip Hop Dance

There are different dance moves that music lovers can associate with. Hip Hop is a genre that is popular worldwide among youths and even the older generations. Hip hop dance has various moves that you will assume to be tough to master in the first instance. The secret to getting it right is to understand the important steps and everything else will fall in place. You will fall in love with Hip Hop dance moves once you learn and understand the dance. So, how do you learn the hip hop dance moves that have always been your dream? This article will show you how.

Start with the mind of a beginner

Forget about those dance classes you attended a while back if you want to get it right. Thinking like a Hip Hop dancer beginner will help you welcome new ideas. You will realize that it is much more exciting learning from scratch since you will have all the details given to you as a beginner. What’s more? It will open your mind and put you in a learning mode.

Have passion for it

Your desire to learn will drive you towards achieving your goal of becoming a pro in the Hip Hop dance. As in any other pursuit for skill, you have to love what you want to do. After all, why would you learn something you hate? Put your heart and mind into the dance and in a instant, you will be surprised at how fast you are learning. An important thing to do is to ignore those who think you are not good enough or who believe that you are not doing it right. Some people will only bruise your ego. You must do this to improve your concentration otherwise you will simply get discouraged and fall out of the practice.

Go to places associated with the dance

Clubs which play hip-hop music is one such place. Such places will get you to love the art of hip-hop. As a result, you will grow that urge to know more about the art and consider trying the dance moves. Also, you can attend the various colleges if you are a student or dance studios which incorporate the dance into their program. Look keenly at what they do and try them later at home. Visiting these places will take you a long way in ensuring that you move towards being a pro.

Buy a dance instructional DVD

There exist various DVDs which feature some dance moves. They could be of great help to you. They will take you step by step, from the simple fundamental moves to the more complicated ones. You must have the skill to listen and locate the driving beats of a hip hop song. It helps you to go with the beat and be more coherent in the dance. Put much focus on the beat and ignore other distractions that can interfere with your concentration to the moves. It is the secret to getting it right.

So, you probably thought the complicated hip hop dance moves you see your favorite artist doing is not possible. Well, everything depends on your determination to succeed as well as how regular you practice.

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Ballet

Ballet is an amazing form of dancing. It’s more than just a dance style however, it’s an art form. It has technical movements and footwork that must be executed with precision and mastery, yet at the same time, it has to convey a sense of emotion that blends naturally with the music which accompanies the dance. Consequently, the best ballet dancers don’t just have dancing skills; they are also accomplished in mime, singing and acting.

The history of ballet started from way back. Ballet started in the 1600s when dances were performed merely as an art. Through time, people have grown to like ballet that is why it has been considered as one of the most famous dance forms there is.

What makes a talented ballet dancer?

People may have different opinions when it comes to their definition of a talented ballet dancer. Basically, a talented ballet dancer is someone who possesses fluid grace when it comes to dancing. They should be poised when they dance and graceful when switching from one movement to another. A good ballet dancer is able to reach out the audience and convey her emotions to them. The audience should get clearly what the dancer is trying to say through his or her actions.

There are also men who undergo training as ballet dancers. Back in the Renaissance Period, ballet dancers were male dancers dressed up as women. Today, this is not done anymore as ballet has become predominantly female, but there are still men who study ballet. Male ballet dancers are flexible and light in weight but are very strong – enough to lift female dancers throughout the routine.

Merits of ballet dancing

Ballet dancing is a great way of keeping fit. The amount of training that is involved ensures that a ballet dancer has a well-toned body. Their healthy lifestyle means that they usually have a good metabolism and have above average stamina. The exercises to develop poise means that they stand, walk and sit correctly which means they look confident and don’t develop a backache from bad posture.

Body flexibility and suppleness. This classical dance mostly concerns on strength. Ballet dancing can assist you develop strength in your knees and ankles and can also aid you to develop suppleness within the joints and overall body flexibility, which may be one of the best advantages of ballet.

Stress reliever. When you take time and specialize in your ballet lesson, enjoying the music it brings about your complete attention to the harmonious execution of the steps. Which will assist you eliminate the various thoughts you have concerning issues in your career and almost about something that is supplying you with stress. Graciously moving your body beside the soothing sound of the musical genre also, can be a sort of relaxation where you simply relinquish of everything in your mind and just move with the music.

If you wish to find out more about ballet, simply to add that well-toned body or build a career on ballet dancing, you’ll really reap several different good merits of ballet.

 

Ballroom Dance 101

Ballroom dancing is a very old form of dancing that has been able to remain relevant throughout the years even in light of modern dancing styles. In this type of dancing, two people (mostly couples) perform different dance moves following a series of predictable steps. As such, it is worth noting that this dance is not a one-man kind of dance. When learning how ballroom dancer, there are a few things that you should note. For starters, people learn at different paces and speed. There are those who learn faster while others take before they master one move. However, whichever the case, becoming a pro-ballroom dancer is very easy with appropriate practice. Here are some of the useful tips that beginners should consider using:

Get the right attire and shoes

Not all clothes and shoes are suitable for ballroom dancing. In this form of dancing, the clothes and shoes you wear are going to determine how enjoyable you will find the dance to be. This is why it is important that you only wear clothes and shoes that you feel comfortable in. There are people who prefer wearing jeans to skirts while others opt for slacks. Ideally, you should avoid wearing clothes that are too tight as such clothes give you very little freedom of movement. Avoid wearing too many clothes or heavy sweaters as you will most likely sweat while dancing and being overdressed can easily make you perspire.

Commit to practice

The secret behind becoming a good ballroom dance is practicing regularly. For instance, if you have never danced this style before, you will find it hard to follow the dancing moves as they should be followed. There are people who have a lot of problem matching a specific pattern of steps. The easiest way to overcome these challenges is by taking regular practices to improve your weaknesses and polish your strengths.

Choose a good studio

Your choice of studio also has an effect on how easy or hard it will be for you to learn the concepts and skills of ballroom dancing. For first time dancers, a studio is usually a great place to learn the basics of this type of dancing. This is not only because these studios are well designed for this form of dancing but also because there are instructors to guide and coach you. If you decide to learn on your own at home, you most likely make very little progress especially if you have no one to guide and train you.

Use reliable resource materials

The best thing about ballroom dancing is that there is usually something new that you can learn by watching other dancers or from other sources such as the internet. There are also lots of books and magazines that provide tips on how to become a pro ballroom dancer. The resourceful content that you get from such sources goes a long way in making it easy for you to learn the basics, tips and suggestions you should follow when you want to become a ballroom dancer.

Never get discouraged when you realize that you are making almost no progress. It takes time to learn and polish ballroom dancing skills.

Check out this gorgeous waltz video, and then come back next week as we go into another style of dance.

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Basic Intro to Different Styles of Dance

Dance is usually popular all over the world due to the fact that people love expressing themselves through some form of movement. Different people conjure different images for the term “dance”. Over time dance has evolved to incorporate different forms and styles. They are quite a number that it gets practically impossible to choose just one dance style. Below are a few different and popular dance types and categories that are available for anyone to choose the one that appeal to them most.
Ballroom Dances

These dances made their first appearances in Italy first during the early years of what was known as the Renaissance. It quickly swept over the United States, Europe and the rest of the world. Over time there emerged some other easily performed as well as simpler types of dances that caused ballroom dances to lose some of the influence they held before. Recently these immortal dances have started being resurrected by the modern dancing audience worldwide. Examples include Waltz, Bolero, Viennese Waltz, Cha-Cha, Rumba, Tango, Mambo and Samba.

Traditional Jazz

This includes the Charleston which was quite popular having been popularized by “The Charleston” tune that had been composed by James P. Johnson. The Swing is another one that came in various flavors such as Rock and Roll, Jitterbug, West Coast Swing, Boogie Woogie and Lindy Hop. Others included the tap dance and the Moonwalk which was first performed by Michael Jackson, a pop icon, in March, 1983.

Latin Dances/ Worldwide Dances

This group consists of Salsa which is very popular in North America, Latin America, Australia and Europe. It is characterized by its sensual form, innovative choreography and energetic movement. Flamenco falls under this category and it is a Spanish dace that is very popular. It is passionate, magical and has an energetic fusion of singing or cante, guitar playing or torque, dancing and handclaps (palmas). Others include the Argentine tango, lambada, Polka, Capoeira, Country/Western dances, Jive, Folk Dance and belly dance.

Professional Performances dance

Professional dancing was introduced in the earlier years of the Italian Renaissance where arts, dance, poetry and music started rising after many years of medieval stagnation. Refined as a result of the efforts by Russia and France, ballet became the premier concert dance that was technical. Ballet continued rising to a worldwide domination. Other professional dances that came to be included the concert dance, modern dance and the contemporary dance. However, none of them managed to overtake the complexity, strain as well as the heritage of the ballet dance.

Modern Dances

As the music technology went on advancing, it gave birth to more dance types. The introduction of some music genres like rock and electronic music brought about the punk, house, disco and rave dances. In India, they paid less attention to these new styles and incorporated their dances to their gods and they are referred to as Bollywood dances.

Funk and Hip-Hop Dance

The hip-hop dance originated when that music style emerged during the 1970s. The hip-hop dances found a great foothold in the UK, USA, South Korea and France. This was mainly due to great media exposure, popularity, TV programs and movies. Funk dance was also created in the 1970s and is heralded as one of the most influential piece of hip-hop dances.

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