On 29 April, the world takes a few bouncy steps to celebrate the International Dance Day. The idea of the annual event came to life by an organisation of UNESCO, called the International Dance Council in 1982. The exact date was chosen to honour the life and career of French ballet master Jean-Georges Noverre, born on the same day. To properly celebrate the cultural importance of dancing, we’ve collected some of the genres that you can start even when you’re not as quick and flexible as you used to be – it’s never too late to do some dancing!
This nostalgic dance never goes out of style! Many events and festivals are held around the globe, giving a chance to curious people to try the famous moves of Buenos Aires. Not only amateurs, but professionals also gather together on these occasions, so it’s safe to say that tango is not only a dance, but a worldwide social community as well, connecting the lovers of dance. Tango is also a synonym for passion, emotions – it doesn’t matter what language you speak, how old you are, when you step on the stage only the music, the rhythm and the dance moves count! One of the masters of tango in Budapest is Endre Szeghalmi, an activist, a teacher and a devoted lover of the genre since 2008.
Salsa originates from Cuba: it’s pulsating, energetic and playful. So, it’s no surprise how popular it became in the last decade in the Hungarian capital. Unlike in ballroom dance, the continuous switching of partners and the famous round dance called Rueda de Casino make salsa a real social experience, too. You’ll surely find a club wherever you go, as bigger cities usually have at least a smaller dance group to practice your moves with. Salsa Diabolica, one of the most famous schools of Budapest, has given many salsa fans to the world already – you could be the next one!
Local folklore traditions are very colourful. One of the pillars of our cultural heritage are the many types of folkdance, varying according to region with uncountable versions of festive costumes and habits. The most popular Hungarian dance is probably the one called “csárdás”, but it’s worth trying other ones as well. There are several dance houses organized in the city, where you can learn the first steps with the help of teachers and professionals – even if you haven’t found a partner yet. In a friendly atmosphere, with an astonishing music in the background, in the company of dance lovers, you will quickly get the hang of it!
Instead of being a genre, ballroom dancing is a group of both Latin and European partner dances. Taking up some lessons is a great way to get a closer look of many dance types. You don’t have to achieve a professional level, but you can improve your sense of rhythm and hearing, getting better in following or leading. The most common dances are Slow Waltz or English Waltz, foxtrot, salsa, cha-cha, rumba and rocky.
Lindy originates from swing – it came a long way from the Afro-American communities of Harlem in the beginning of the 1930s. Named after Charles Lindbergh, who managed to fly across the ocean and so the title “LINDY HOPS THE ATLANTIC” was written in many newspapers. When famous dancer Shorty George Snowden was asked what kind of dance they performed, he looked at a paper and said: we hopped just the way as Lindy did over the ocean – and so the dance was called Lindy Hop. It can amaze and entertain everyone with its playfulness. Spectacular acrobatic moves are also staged by professionals – but don’t you worry, Lindy Hop is great fun for beginners, too!