WHAT’S YOUR STYLE?
As one source describes it, “First and foremost, square dancing is people; socializing, dancing, playing music, and having an experience together!”
It creates an atmosphere of music and laughter among friends and neighbours. Square Dancing is also healthy, both mentally and physically. If you need to blow off steam, try square dancing!
Modern Square Dance
Modern Square Dance, like it’s predecessor – the Traditional Square Dance, is directed by a caller. The caller strings together, or choreographs, a sequence of moves to create an intricate dance set to the music of his or her choice.
The music for modern square dancing can be from any artist, year or genre. You will find a wide variety from caller to caller.
There are eight people (four couples), who generally function as a team, in each square. The formation is a couple, facing inward, on each “side” of the square. Usually, each square dances independently of one another. However, there are always exceptions to every rule; some callers can create specialty and fun dances which will move a dancer from one square to another.
Line dance is exactly what it sounds like, there are lines of dancers all doing the same steps. A little known bit of info about line dancing is that the dances are again, lead by a line dance caller.
There are some line dances that are so popular they are taught in schools and it seems like everyone knows at least a couple of steps to them.
Clogging is a type of folk dance in which the dancer’s footwear is used percussively by striking the heel, the toe, or both against a floor or each other to create audible rhythms, usually to the downbeat with the heel keeping the rhythm.
Although some people still enjoy traditional clogging, today’s cloggers are just as likely to dance to hip-hop beats. In fact, modern clogging looks suspiciously similar to tap dancing. Both involve metal-tipped shoes, fast-paced music and a lot of stomping.
Round dancing is much like ballroom dancing with a few exceptions. Indiviual couples move in a circlular, counter-clockwise pattern around the dance area. It is choreographed ahead of time and the “cuer” calls each move so the couples are dancing the same steps at the same time.
A great deal of work goes into creating a round dance. First, the cuer will select a piece of music of his or her choice. As with square dancing, this does not conform to any specific artist, year or genre. The cuer will then add the different steps or figures to flow to the music. This is then written out on a cue sheet for use at the dance.
At a square dance you will generally find a “round” between each tip. You will find more information about round dancing here.
Contra dancing is social interaction, meeting people, and making new friends, set to music.A caller, usually working with a group of live musicians, guides new and experienced dancers alike through a variety of dances.
A dancer and his or her partner dance a series of figures, or moves, with each other and with another couple for a short time. They then repeat the same figures with another couple, and so on. The figures are similar to those of old-time square dancing. The figures are combined in different ways for each different dance.
The caller teaches each dance before it is actually done to the music. This gives everyone an idea of what to expect so the movements can be easily executed. The caller leads the dances while they are being done to music, so dancers are able to perform each movement to the music. Once the dancers appear to have mastered a particular dance, the caller may stop calling, leaving the dancers to enjoy the movement with music alone.