American Style Smooth Ballroom Dances - Music & Video Samples of Each Dance

Copyright © 2013 by Goldcoast Ballroom, Inc.

Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers (Image courtesy of Wikipedia Commons)American Style Smooth Ballroom dancing is called that because it is a style of dancing that was pioneered, developed, and is popular in the United States. The dancing of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers is the classic example of American Style Smooth dancing.

American Style Smooth dancing is generally typified by a combination of open (side by side) patterns and figures, with dramatic extended and reaching arm positions, along with some dancing in closed position (as a couple in closed dance hold).

The music for these dances generally sounds about the same as the music for the corresponding International Standard Ballroom dances, with the notable exception that the American Style Viennese Waltz music is slower than International Style Viennese Waltz music — as well it must be to allow time for the many open positions, with extended and reaching arms, that typify American Viennese Waltz, as contrasted with the faster International Standard Viennese Waltz, which is danced entirely in partner-hold dance position.

The four American Style Smooth Ballroom Dances are listed below, along with samples of the music for each dance and links to videos illustrating the dance. The regulation timing, as recognized by the National Dance Council of America (NDCA), is indicated for each dance:

American Style Smooth Ballroom Dances:

Dance
Music Sample
Video of the Dance Performed
To enlarge videos, Click the square “Full Screen” Icon at bottom right corner of video. Press “Esc” to return here after playing video.
Waltz
(3/4 time, 28–30 bars per minute;
30–32 bars per minute for Bronze)
See and Listen to Video
Right column »»»

Jeff Sandler with Olga Bogdanov – Spectacular Smooth Waltz – Holiday Showcase, December, 2010 at Goldcoast Ballroom
Tango
(4/4 time, 30 bars per minute;
30–32 bars per minute for Bronze)
See and Listen to Video
Right column »»»

Jeff Sandler with Olga Bogdanov (Couple No 490) – Semi Final at Emerald Ball Competition 2008. Tango starts at 1:32 on this video.
Foxtrot
(4/4 time, 30 bars per minute;
32–34 bars per minute for Bronze)
See and Listen to Video
Right column »»»

Jeff Sandler with Olga Bogdanov (Couple No 490) – Semi Final at Emerald Ball Competition 2008. Foxtrot starts at 2:59 on this video.
Viennese Waltz
(3/4 time, 53–54 bars per minute;
54 bars per minute for Bronze)
See and Listen to Video
Right column »»»
Vinny Munno & Susie Thompson (Couple 809) – American Smooth & Rhythm Championships at USDC 2002. Viennese Waltz starts at 6:00 on this video.

 

For more information about different styles of dancing and other dances, see our Resource article on:

Know Your Dances: Dance Styles Explained – with Music & Video Samples of Each Dance.”

At Goldcoast Ballroom, we teach group classes and our instructors give private lessons in all of the American Style Smooth Ballroom Dances listed above, as well as all of the International Standard Ballroom Dances, International Style Latin Dances, and American Style Rhythm dances, plus Argentine Tango, and most all of the Other Social Dances.

All of these dances and dance styles are described and explained on our Resources: Learn About Dance page.

We also play music for all of the dances at our Social Dances, Practice Sessions, and Parties.

For more information about our schedule of classes, dances and events, see our CALENDAR, our Dynamic Gallery of What’s Happening on our Home page, and our NEWS page.

For information on our World Class Instructors, see our INSTRUCTORS page.

 

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Copyright © 2013 Goldcoast Ballroom, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Note: The above music samples are shared courtesy of Grooveshark, a service that provides music free for public listening and sharing, under an arrangement that pays fair compensation to the artists and music rights holders for making their music available for sharing via Grooveshark.

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