Saturday August 8, 2015
Overview – Blues People: the culture and history of blues idiomatic dance
12PM – 12:30PM
We’ll discuss some of the roots of what created blues music and dance, not just it’s musical and movement parents, but also the socio-political struggles that gave rise to the need to sing and dance the blues.
A Taste of Blues
12:30PM – 1:30PM
We’ll examine the blues aesthetic in how it relates to partner dancing technique exploring four different dances.
Jookin’ I: Dance like no one is watching
1:45PM – 2:45PM
The Memphis blues dances of the rent parties and juke joints, these are the “down home” dances done when people wanted to let their hair down and didn’t care who was watching. These dances have given rise to a new hip-hop dance that shares the same name — come see how the old folks used to do ’em.
Ballroomin’ I: Even Big Bands get the Blues
3PM – 4PM
These are what the urban dancers did when the traveling big bands took a break from their Swingin’ jazz and wanted to play something with a little more grit and little more drag.
Sunday August 9, 2015
Jookin’ II: Electric Boogaloo
11:30AM – 12:30PM
We’ll learn more funky blues dances and really concentrate on what in the music spurs our movement. Newer dancers will increase their juke joint style of dance while more experienced dancers will gain new musicality and improvisation skills.
Struttin’: Traveling Shoes
12:45PM – 1:45PM
This class focuses on a Memphis blues dance popular from the 40’s through the early 60’s. It is one of the more rare traveling juke joint style dances and is great for being able to dance at both medium to very fast tempos without breaking a sweat. We’ll cover the fundamentals and get into some of the lesser known but incredibly fun footwork patterns and improvisations.
Ballroomin’ II: Flash and Class
2PM – 3PM
This class will focus on improving our ballroom blues dance vocabulary, with special focus on cool spins, drops and slides that were the signature moves in the Harlem ballrooms. We’ll be using the fundamental skills developed Saturday and really stretch ourselves with some really cool socially lead-able moves that rarely get seen.