Some of my favourite swing clips

pygmalion

Well-Known Member
#42
I knew your shag video from the other day struck a chord, Siggav.

Here's a clip from the Shag Dance National Championships. Unless I'm mistaken, this is Carolina Shag. mjnemeth, a DFer, does a lot of this dance. Maybe he can take a look and confirm, when he checks in. :cool: Looks like a totally different dance than the one you posted, doesn't it?



 

Siggav

Active Member
#44
Yeah the clip I posted was collegiate shag. A completely different dance. I was told here that in a dance context that "shag" was a term for a dance that had lots of footwork but very little going on in the upper body. Even balboa fits with that definition.

Living in the UK though where shag can mean a very different thing it's total innuendo city trying to talk about the dance. What then ask people if they know it/want to dance it
 

pygmalion

Well-Known Member
#45
And speaking of collegiate shag, check out this cool video that combines vintage video with contemporary dancers doing the same dance to (what appears to be) the same music. Very cool.

 

Siggav

Active Member
#46
Really interesting seeing that collegiate shag clip, fun to see the older footage too, hadn't seen that before.

Adding in now a fun balboa clip that has lots of pure bal with intricate footwork in it as well as bal-swing.

 

Siggav

Active Member
#48
Well, kind of? As in you could have a social dance that looks like that and I think that they're basically mostly doing lead/follow in that dance but I don't know for sure. Some of the foot stuff is stylings though so not really lead/followed but doesn't really interfere with the lead either.

Balboa is really subtle with how the intricate footwork is lead but because you have a chest connection you can feel really tiny weight changes and delays and stuff that will help. I'm just a balboa beginner though, social danced it a few times and been to around 5-6 group lessons.
 
#50
Well, kind of? As in you could have a social dance that looks like that and I think that they're basically mostly doing lead/follow in that dance but I don't know for sure. Some of the foot stuff is stylings though so not really lead/followed but doesn't really interfere with the lead either.
They seem kinda...gancho like?
Balboa is really subtle with how the intricate footwork is lead but because you have a chest connection you can feel really tiny weight changes and delays and stuff that will help.
Sounds like Argentine tango (based on my very limited experience). :) I've never danced balboa, but from your description, I wonder if it might have appeal to me as a standard ballroom dancer.
I'm just a balboa beginner though, social danced it a few times and been to around 5-6 group lessons.
The first time I saw balboa, I was a very-wet-behind-the-ears ballroom newbie: "Hey, that looks...vaguely like east coast swing. Danced obscenely close..." :eek:
 

Siggav

Active Member
#51
You should try it out if you can. The posture is less athletic and more upright than lindy. You are on your axis however despite the chest connection so not like AT can be. Feet are offset so you get the connection just by standing very close.

You do have a bounce going on in bal which is part of how that intricate footwork syncs up. Ie it's a bit like your leads pulse/bounce is a metronome for the feet. However because of the close connection the pulse doesnt need to be big and obvious. I really enjoy bal. It can feel really relaxing despite the usually rather up tempo


Bal people are usually super nice as well. The dance isn't as popular as some dances so they're very welcoming and friendly to new dancers in my experience and talking to others
 

Siggav

Active Member
#52
There's a fair bit of AT crossover where I dance and we were just talking about the differences down at the pub recently. I've never done AT but was told it felt a bit like blues footwork and principles done in a balboa hold.

Back to balboa, the basic footwork is just quick quick slow with the slow being either a down hold or an up hold. Down hold is you basically step into the floor and roll through the foot for the full duration of the slow while an up hold you hover the foot for one pulse or half the slow before putting the foot down. In the most basic styling is just a barely above the floor hover but you can also flick the foot out for it. I've been told not to do any of that yet, just stick to the basic hover to make sure that my basic is really a basic since I'm just starting out.

Whether its an up or down hold is lead/followable since you can feel that slight hover in your lead in an uphold but the timing is usually quite fast so I find it difficult. Also no way of looking at anyones feet since you're dancing so close, very easy to step on each others toes if you get out of sync.

Hmmm.. I should probably start up a new thread or dig up an old one about Balboa
 

Steve Pastor

Moderator
Staff member
#53
Two dances are supposed to have developed in Southern California because of crowded dance floors. Balboa is the one that makes sense, supposedly due to extreme crowding as described by Peter Loggings. That West Coast swing developed for the same reason doesn't make sense since you don't even see it on film until the 2nd half of the 50s.
The close embrace in Balboa is very much like the Argentine Tango close embrace, at least outwardly. I can't comment on whether or not they function the same way. I would have to see on film from the 30s or 40s some of the AT like movements such as ganchos and boleos before I would be convinced that they weren't brought into the dance by comtemporary dancers.
There ARE written descriptions of Balboa in dance books from the middle decades of the 20th century, but of course they only cover basics.
 

Siggav

Active Member
#54
Yeah I find it very plausible that balboa evolved out of crowded dance floors.

Back to the swing clips, this Skye and Naomi are just awesome. The quality of movement is just brilliant. Also fun to see at the end when they do partner up how what they're dancing is slow lindy which is totally different from WCS and again the music is slow swing music so it all fits and makes sense

 
#55

I just realized that you posted the same two people that I am posting in this video. lol!

I love Skye's style of swing dancing most of all. I hope someday to have that same level of musicality and smoothness in my own swing dancing!
 

bookish

Active Member
#56
More Balboa videos! I have a ton of these saved too. The top couples, as with Lindy, definitely stake out their own styles and it's fun to compare.

Bernard and Ann-Helene are really fun to watch for footwork and legwork. The footwork around 0:38 gets me every time, the other musical interpretation is really cool, and, hey, hat trick:


Jeremy and Laura bring a different style, more swing moves, maybe a bit "bigger." This could be a good time to mention that what people today call "pure Balboa" is the close-embrace stuff, often with interesting footwork, that doesn't take up a lot of room, and the "Bal-swing" is a mixture of stuff that didn't all used to be called Balboa at all. A lot of it was just "swing" or "L.A. style swing." And it can take up a bit more room, though on average not as much as Lindy.


Two different teaching couples dancing to the same song. Interesting to compare how they highlight the music and various points.


Finally, here's an interesting one. I think Max's Lindy background shows through in his style here. The musicality is spot on, and he's got some moves.

 

Siggav

Active Member
#57
I have a new one! awesome blues showcase


I've been on a complete blues dancing kick lately. Went to a great workshop last month and still flying high really
 

Siggav

Active Member
#58
Super fun lindy clip, teacher jam. The real treat kicks in at around 4:30 when they start playing around and turn it into a steal jam with hijinks. So much fun to watch and a total treat to see these world class dancers fooling around and playing, social dancing to an awesome live band.

 

Siggav

Active Member
#60
This is just beautiful, a wedding dance that turns into a jam for the happy couple. Made me realise that a dancer's wedding would probably have somewhat different dancing than most weddings I've been too, esp if a lot of their friends dance too

 

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