The art of dance is a fickle thing.
There is no denying all of us, at one point in our lives, have uttered the phrase “I can’t dance”. But why do we say this? Do we compare our dancing style to that of professional dancers and therefore convince ourselves we cannot dance? Possibly it is because, in a social setting, we don’t want to embarrass ourselves in front of friends. Or maybe, just maybe, we’re feeling a little lazy and just don’t feel like dancing? Either way the question we now ask is, how can we perfect the art of dance so that anyone can do it and there is no longer an excuse!
I set out and asked many different people what their quintessential dance moves were and why they liked to dance and the responses I received were interesting to say the least. I soon realised that my responses led me through the history of dance with each individual preferring a particular style and genre of dance.
Those that we compare our moves to, the flexible, delicate, professional dancers, are taught how to dance from young ages. They keep this dancing knowledge deep inside them and use it to express themselves. Much like 21-year-old Natasha Taylor, 19-year-old Elizabeth Dimopoulos and 21-year-old Isis Oliver (left to right).
And with the help of Dimopoulos’ good friend and dance partner 20-year-old Penelope Vellis, the duo created a delicate scene combining their two moves.
This style of dancing is most commonly seen in the ballet world, where they stretch their elegantly long bodies to the point of perfection. Standing as tall as possible on their tiny toes as they spin and prance.
Elegance and formality have always been a key feature throughout the history of dancing starting with the slow and sweet ballroom dancing. 30-year-old Simon Kirkman and Oliver gracefully demonstrated this.
Dancers like this paid particular attention to the footwork of the two partners.
Throughout the years dance moved on to a style more, dancey, for lack of a better word. These dances brought the human race into the flowing movements that we know today. In particular, a dance move we all know to be the jazz swing! With the males tossing and flipping their partners in the air and spinning them around. This was a particularly fun time in the history of dance. Whilst giggling hysterically, 22-year-old Rebecca Hopper and Kirkman thought this would be a fun move to test out.
The joy that is swing dancing helped society to move towards a more fluid method of dancing. Turning to more modern dancing, we begin to see the era of free movement. Where people are able to move and flow freely.
If you’re looking to get down and funky then look no further than these jiggin’ moves demonstrated by 21-year-old Alana Scott. She said, “I’ve been dancing since I was three years old, but I’m always at my best when out in the Cross.”
If you’re into having a fun time while you dance then these moves demonstrated by 22-year-old Rachelle Mall are definitely the moves for you. She said, “I love dancing because it’s fun and you almost stop caring about what other people think. It’s just fun… and I feel like a pop star.”
It wasn’t long before the running man joined the list of must have dance moves.
But Mall isn’t the only one who thinks the running man is the move to do! Rebecca Hopper also agrees that it is the move that everyone should be hoppin’ to.
It may not be the running man but Vellis certainly does have some moves worth trying at home.
This move, sort of like the sprinkler only without the sprinkler part, is also a fun move to execute if you’re feeling up to it! It’s kind of a mix between the sprinkler and crumping.
So it would seem that with the evolution of dance and all it’s transformations of moves throughout the years, that there is in fact an endless supply of moves for any individual to execute. So with this, I hope to never hear the words “I can’t dance”. EVER AGAIN!
Now get out there and shake those tail feathers!
– Isabel Williams
Top photo taken by Rebecca Hopper.
All photos credit to Rebekah Day, Rebecca Hopper and Isabel Williams.