Ballroom dance, depending on how it is defined, may refer to a wide variety of partner dances, which originated in the Western world and are now enjoyed both socially and competitively around the globe. Its performance and entertainment aspects are also widely enjoyed on stage, in film, and on television. Typically it includes Standard (also termed Smooth or Modern) dances such as waltz or foxtrot, and Latin (also termed Rhythm) dances such as cha cha and rumba. Standard dances are normally danced to straight-beat, Western music; couples dance counter-clockwise around the floor; and when formalized, the lady wears a long gown and the gentleman a bow-tie and tails. Latin dances are normally danced to off-beat, latin or jive music; couples may dance more-or-less in one spot or move around the floor; and when formalized, the woman wears a short-skirt latin outfit and the man dresses in black. The dances have origins in Europe, Latin America, and Africa. International Style dances are mainly British versions of such dances; likewise American Style (also called Social Style) dances are versions that evolved in the United States.
The term "ballroom dancing" is derived from the word ball, which in turn originates from the Latin word ballare which means "to dance".
The definition of ballroom dance also depends on the era. Balls have featured Minuet, Quadrille, Polonaise, Pas de Gras, Mazurka, and other popular dances of the day, which are considered to be historical dances.
In times past, ballroom dancing was "social dancing" for the privileged, leaving "folk dancing" for the lower classes. These boundaries have since become blurred, and it should be noted even in times long gone, many "ballroom" dances were really elevated folk dances.
Ballroom dancing has been in continual use as a social art form since its inception with one exception in the 20th century. Dance historians usually mark the appearance of the Twist in the mid 1960s as the end of social partner dancing, and they credit what was then called the Latin Hustle for bringing it back in the late 1970s.
Dance and Listen Ltd - Strict tempo ballroom dance music producer in the UK, specializing in standard (modern) and Latin music.
- Ballroom Dancers.com - Complete resources on smooth and Latin dances, swing and hustle. Multimedia instruction, newsletter subscription and partner search classifieds.
- Books on Ballroom Dancing - Comprehensive list of books on Ballroom dancing. Also includes books on swing and Latin dancing, as well as history of partner dance.
- Burn the Floor - Site contains tour dates, photo gallery and ticket sales for this ballroom dancing production.
- Couple Dance World - The world's most comprehensive and unique reference guide on couple dancing which includes dance techniques going as far back as 400A.D.
- Dance Beat - An online ballroom dance and competition magazine.
- Dance Vision International - Ballroom and dance sport portal. Features dance directories, online shopping for music, videos, and apparel, expert advice, discussion and chat, news and event information, and other dance related resources.
- Dancers Planet - Dance news, interviews with World famous dancers, and photographs. On-line store.
- Dancescape - Ballroom Dancing and DanceSport Digital Magazine about Olympic-Recognized sport of competitive Ballroom Dancing. Includes an online shopping centre for dance-related products called, "Dancer's Paradise".
- DanceSport Magazine - Quarterly, full-color publication dedicated to competitive partner dancing.
- Dancesport UK - All about Ballroom and Latin dancing in UK and internationally. Competitiors, places to dance, events, results, partner search and constantly updated news. Also, IDSF rules and world ranking.
- DanceSport Worldsite - Information, worldwide links, news, shopping guide, photos, classifieds, and reviews.
- DanceTV Ballroom Dance Page - Site with descriptions of ballroom dance starting with the first step. Good reference for beginners.
- Danceway.com - Introduction to competitive ballroom dancing, photos, articles, classifieds, and a dance dictionary.
- The Dutch Ballroom Server - Dutch/English site on Ballroom, Formation, Rock and Roll, and Latin dancing, including dance games.
- ExploreDance.com - Web magazine containing information on places to dance, competitions, and photos.
- Fred Bolder's Ballroom Site - Everything about ballroom dancing. Instructions, clipart, music titles, magazine, dance software, pictures etc.
- History of Modern Ballroom Dancing - Comprehensive history of the International DanceSport championship "Modern Standard Ballroom" dances: Viennese waltz, modern waltz, tango, slow foxtrot, and quickstep. By Don Herbison-Evans.
- Indy Dancers - Central Indiana - non-profit, self help dance club. Offering weekly dances and monthly newsletter.
- Jai Chavan's Dance-Sport - Non-commercial site with notes, pictures, video samples and information. Updated weekly. Created by a dance teacher.
- Millennium Ballroom - Information about Ballroom dancing, dance lesson and parties.
- Much Ado About Ballroom Dancing - Ballroom dancing explained: pointers on learning to dance, choosing shoes, and finding dance music.
- Papillon's Realm of Ballroom Dancing - History of ballroom dancing, music samples, international syllabus, picture gallery.
- Sequence Dancing with Diane and Peter - All about modern sequence dancing in England. Details of the new dances and links to events and places to dance. Sequence dancing is based on modern ballroom dancing and very popular.
- Shall we Dance? Ballroom Dancing and the Benefits of the Alexander Technique - How the Alexander Technique can enhance the quality of ballroom dancing.
- Single Dance Partners Network Nationwide - Adult single dancers can search for ballroom dance partners or dating by state (43 states in the USA, Canada & Argentina).
- SoCal DanceSport Portal - A DanceSport directory with a search engine leading you to information and links related to ballroom, latin, and swing dancing. Focused on the Southern California region.
- United States Amateur Ballroom Dancers Association - A nationwide organization of competitive, college and social Amateur Ballroom dancers that functions as the governing body in the USA for amateur ballroom dancing.
- The World Dance Plaza - Provides actual international dancing news, competition results, forums, and photo material.
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