So just what is "Sequence Dancing", and how is it different from - say - Ballroom Dancing as seen on Strictly Come Dancing and similar television programmes worldwide? Well, Ballroom Dancers will normally dance groups of steps which "fit", for example, into available space on the dance floor. A well trained ballroom dancer will (or should be able to) change direction if and when the dance floor is busy or crowded, steps will be changed on the move or ad hoc to suit.Sometimes called "freestyle" dancing and a suitable name in many respects! Ballroom Dancers will have routines of varying lengths made up of groups of steps put together to suit individual dances, and the man will lead the lady into these steps as required.
Sequence Dancers, on the other hand, dance a fixed sequence of steps, all commencing and (hopefully when the music stops) finishing at the same time.Normally these sequences cover 16 bars of music in the genre being danced, and the dances each have individual names, for example, such as the Mayfair Quickstep or Tango Serida. If you learned a St Bernard's Waltz, or the Gay Gordons at school, those were sequence dances, albeit very old ones. So a typical sequence dancing session could well involve two or more different Quicksteps, Waltzes, Rumbas or other dances, each with their own fixed sequence of steps, known to each of the partners, that is, the man knows his steps, and his partner will know her individual steps in the fixed order for the dance announced. Since everyone starts and finishes at the same time, and dances the same steps in the sequence at the same time, sequence dancers follow each other round the dance floor, usually without major problems or collisions.
Sequence Dance has three main divisions, Modern, Latin and Classical Sequence. Modern Sequence Dancing includes Quickstep, Waltz, Foxtrot and Tango,just as in Ballroom Dancing, and uses many of the same steps in the fixed sequences. The Latin sequence dances include Cha Cha, Rumba,Samba and Jive, again as in latin-american dance, but also includes Mambo, Bossa Nova and Paso Doble on occasion. The Classical section covers what used to be called "Old Time Dance" but the name was changed to Classical to better reflect the style of dance, especially since new dances are still being written in the Old Time or Classical style to the present day - a bit hard to take in the term "new old time dances"?Classical Sequence Dancing includes Old Time Waltz, Saunter - roughly equivalent to Foxtrot, Tango, Swing - again, approximately equating to Quickstep, as well as Gavotte, Stroll and other rhythms such as Two Step, and occasionally even a Mazurka!
If you'd like to find out more about learning Sequence Dancing, Click this link or the "Learn Sequence Dancing" link in the sidebar alongside to the right.
In the Edinburgh Area, you'll be welcome at Carrickvale Sequence Dance Club if you want to try the EasySimple Social Sequence dances, open every Friday afternoon throughout most of the year.