Shag (dance)

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The shag is a swing dance from the 1930s and 1940s based on early forms of the foxtrot. Nowadays the shag is again being studied and danced by swing dance aficionados, often in combination with other swing dances like the lindy hop and balboa . While in Germany Shag almost always refers to the Collegiate Shag , in the English-speaking world you have to distinguish between Collegiate Shag , Carolina Shag and St. Louis Shag. These vary considerably and almost only have the name (probably derived from the same slang expression), the beat and the music (swing) in common.

Characteristic of Shag (more precisely "Double-Time Collegiate Shag") is the rhythm slow - slow - quick - quick (on 6 beats), with dancing in a very close pair dance position. The basic step for the leader begins with a step and a jump on the left leg (counts 1 and 2), then follows a step and jump on the right leg (counts 3 and 4), and finally follows two steps with the left and right Leg (beats 5 and 6). The follower dances the steps starting with the right foot.

The upper body remains largely still, the leading hand is usually stretched upwards (not to the side as in "classic" ballroom dancing), while the legs perform fast and sometimes sweeping movements. Slow refers to the weight change in 2 beats, typically two movements are still performed with the legs, for example step-hop (once with weight change, once without on the same leg). However, especially at fast speeds, the movements have to be small. One of the most striking figures from the Shag are the Sailor Steps in which the legs perform noticeably large sideways movements ("steps"), but the dance couple remains stationary and sometimes even in a closed dance position.

Collegiate Shag is danced to fast music from around 175–180 beats per minute ( BPM ) and far beyond. Dixieland music and gypsy jazz are particularly suitable for this . In addition to recordings by bands from the swing era, new pieces are being written and performed by modern swing bands as part of the current swing revival. The US California Feetwarmers and the Berlin Dizzy Birds are particularly noteworthy .

The swing dancer and dance trainer Ryan Martin released the film "The Rebirth of Shag" in 2014, in which he gets to the bottom of the history and fascination of dance with the help of first generation dancers and contemporary dancers. In many cities there is now the opportunity to learn Collegiate Shag or to practice at dance evenings. There are also numerous collegiate shag festivals that offer intensive lessons and dance parties with live music. Important centers of modern Collegiate Shag dance are Barcelona , Warsaw , Vilnius and Los Angeles .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ - Home of the Forgotten Jitterbug Dance. Retrieved June 6, 2018 .
  2. ^ All About The Dance: Collegiate Shag. Retrieved June 6, 2018 .
  3. Ryan Martin: The Rebirth of Shag. March 5, 2014, accessed June 6, 2018 .
  4. ^ The Shag Map: Collegiate Shag around the world - Google My Maps. Retrieved June 6, 2018 .
  5. SwingPlanit. Retrieved June 6, 2018 .
  6. - Barcelona Shag Festival 2018 -. Retrieved June 6, 2018 (American English).
  7. Warsaw Collegiate Shag Festival 2018. Retrieved June 6, 2018 (American English).
  8. Welcome - Swing Paradise - Vilnius Balboa & Shag Rebirth. Retrieved June 6, 2018 (American English).
  9. LA Shag Festival - Los Angeles, CA. Retrieved June 6, 2018 .