WC Swing
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The sophisticated style and ease of movement makes this dance a popular favorite.

History:

In the 1940's with the wild abandonment of the Jitterbug being banned from dance halls due to too many injuries, a new style of swing developed called "Sophisticated Swing". This was the beginning of what is now called West Coast Swing. The ladies taking "two walking steps forward" towards the man at the beginning of each pattern was standardized. In 1989 California selected the West Coast Swing as its state dance. Today there are over 5000 documented West Coast Swing step patterns and more are added every year.

Music:

West Coast Swing can be danced to almost any music written in 4/4 time, from the Blues to Disco, Jazz, Pop, Country or Big Band. It is considered a "living dance" in that it is constantly evolving, growing and changing to the music styles currently in vogue.

Characteristics:

The West Coast Swing differs from other swing dances because of it's distinctive "dancing in a slot" approach, where the lady's movement takes her towards the man, not away, such as in a rock step.

Teaching Elements:

  • Footwork--Steps are done in a slot, moving forwards and backwards
  • Dance Position--Varies depending on the step being done.
  • Movement--More of a smooth glide than up and down or bounce
  • Motion & Accents--Stress the use of beats to steps and body to music
  • Anchor Steps--Occur at the end of every step pattern
  • Compare/Contrast--East Coast Swing, Foxtrot, Carolina Shag

West Coast Swing songs and artists include:

  • Addicted to Love - Robert Palmer
  • Black Velvet - Allanah Myles
  • Chain of Fools - Aretha Franklin
  • Fever - Peggy Lee
  • Blue Light Boogie - The O Tones

 

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