Ballroom Dance > Classical Ballroom Music

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by kindofblu89, Sep 27, 2009.

  1. kindofblu89

    kindofblu89 New Member

    Does anyone have suggestions for classical music to dance to?
    Also, throw in your favorite romantic tune if you want (I need to build a collection for my girlfriend).
  2. latingal

    latingal Well-Known Member

    Welcome to DF kindofblu89!

    What type of classical music are you looking for? Those for the International Standard dances I assume?
  3. kindofblu89

    kindofblu89 New Member

    I'm not sure. We have not started dance lessons yet, but I want us to have a really good playlist to practice with at home.
  4. latingal

    latingal Well-Known Member


    Are you located in the US? If so, if you're just starting out, you'll probably be introduced to the American style dances that are used for social dancing unless you specifically ask to learn the competitive styles of dance.

    If that is the case, by "classical" music are you talking about classical as in symphonic/orchestural? There are waltzes and the like that you will find in that genre, but I would say most music for ballroom dancing is of another genre.
  5. kindofblu89

    kindofblu89 New Member

    Yes, I am in the U.S. My girlfriend and I are not really interested in competition.

    Yes, I am refering to orchestral music for waltzes.
    Did I post on the wrong board?
  6. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    You're on the right board, just that most american waltz is not done to orchestral pieces
  7. gracie

    gracie Active Member

    Go to Ballroomdancers dot com and listen to their music selections- all styles and you can learn what speed for what dance. Very informative.
  8. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    american vs international has relatively little to do with it, but the majority of ballroom music comes from big band literature or film scores rather than symphonic composers.

    In the music world a waltz is usually a viennese waltz, the faster of the two practiced in ballroom, which requires a moderate amount of skill and more space than you are likely to have at home. Generally you would start by learning the slow waltz, which is really a dance with a lot more depth of potential anyway, though the vw certainly has its elegance in the right setting.

    Generally for ballroom music you want to take the rcommendation of other dancers, and avoid anything that turns up in a record store as its likely just there to cash in on the fad from tv shows. Even with a good publisher like casa musica mayble only one third to one half of the tracks are really good.
  9. j_alexandra

    j_alexandra Well-Known Member

    Another issue with classical music for ballroom dance is that, even if you find (for example) a waltz at an appropriate speed, chances are good that the conductor and orchestra will play with tempo here and there (rubato, etc) which ruins the music for dancing, or at least makes is significantly more challenging. Ballroom recordings exist for a reason, alas. I'd rather waltz to Mahler or Strauss, but don't get the chance.
  10. dancelvr

    dancelvr Well-Known Member

    Ditto, ditto, ditto!! *sigh* I have yet to have the joy of dancing a VW to Strauss. Funny, my first competition, the bronze Smooth dancers got a Strauss waltz.....and in Standard, we got...well, let's just say it was less than inspirational VW music. Go figure................
  11. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    dunno...classical vw, for me, is nearly impossible to dance to...maybe it is just me
  12. Terpsichorean Clod

    Terpsichorean Clod Well-Known Member

    I think it makes it more interesting. It's nice for both music and dancing to ebb and flow. :)
    I was at a social where the DJ played a regular (non-ballroom) version of a Strauss (Viennese) waltz, rubato and all! It was... :oops: But still fun! I'd love to have another go at it. :)
  13. Terpsichorean Clod

    Terpsichorean Clod Well-Known Member

    Welcome to Dance Forums, kindofblu89! You're in the right place.

    Valse Triste by Jean Sibelius - The first portion is slow waltz, the middle is Viennese waltz with a bit that goes to ludicrous speed, and the last few measures go back to slow waltz.

    Antichi Ricordi by Rondo Veneziano (slow waltz) - I guess this is really contemporary classical music.

    When a Merry Maiden Marries from Gilbert and Sullivan's The Gondoliers (slow waltz) - This is light opera, but I think it counts as classical.

    I haven't really tried but I think Mars from Gustav Holst's The Planets might make a nice tango. :)
  14. piimapoika

    piimapoika Member

    Sometimes classical music is arranged for the ballroom. An example is Monti's Czardas, arranged as a tango on Richard Keeling's "On Days Like These", Maestro Records CDTS 161.
  15. Terpsichorean Clod

    Terpsichorean Clod Well-Known Member

  16. j_alexandra

    j_alexandra Well-Known Member

  17. piimapoika

    piimapoika Member

    I have just bought a German LP from ebay: Heute Tanzen Wir - 4 Folge with Max Greger, Alfred Hause, and Horst Wende (Karussell 2430 205). On it are Strauss's Pizzicato Polka and Roses from the South as well as Rubinstein's Melody in F as a quickstep and Rosas's Over the Waves as a cha-cha.
  18. old dog

    old dog Member

    Welcome to Dance Forums, kindofblu89! OK if we refer to you as "kob?"

    Francisco Tárrega's "Recuerdos de la Alhambra" is a beautiful guitar piece in 3/4-time that makes a great slow waltz. Written in 1899, pure guitar renditions may be a bit difficult for beginners, but give a listen to the Tol & Tol version -- available on iTunes. I think my wife and I will never tire of dancing to this music.

    BTW, if you listen to the sample on the iTunes Store, you will hear only the 1st 30 sec. The best part starts around 0:50.
  19. old dog

    old dog Member

    Another one that may not be classical in the classical sense, but comes from The Bohemian Girl, an operetta done in 1843 in London: "I Dreamt I Dwelt in Marble Halls."

    We like the Sumi Jo version for dancing but there are other vocal as well as instrumental renditions. Many are available on iTunes, but not many are very danceable.
  20. old dog

    old dog Member

    A well-known traditional tune, perhaps from the 1580s, is "Greensleeves." There are many instrumental renditions of this that make a good slow waltz. We like the Montovani version that appears on the album Ballroom Dancing V.3 (2004).

    If you have any interest, there are several very old traditional tunes -- especially Irish -- that make good waltz music if you can find the right rendition for dancing. Let me know if you have interest.

    Good luck with your music search and let us know how it all turns out -- both the music and the dancing.

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