Tuesday, April 5, 2016

ATOZCHALLENGE, "D" DANCING IN THE 50'S

 
Dancing in the 1950s
 
The dance I most remember from my high school years was the Square Dance. I was a band kid and we often had square dances. They were a lot of fun. Four couples, eight dancers, formed a square. A caller directed the dancers through the steps. If you haven't heard a caller, you've missed a treat.
 
Square dances have been around a long time. They came to North America with the European Settlers. The western American dance may be the best known of the square dances. It is the official state dance of nineteen U. S. States.
 
Our band sometimes held the dances at the local YMCA, other times at school. I loved the full skirts that twirled and twirled. Often times, the boy and girl partners wore identical shirts. Square Dance Clubs still exist today.
 
Learn more here.
 
Teenagers liked to dance, but they didn't want to dance like their parents, so they invented a variety of steps and styles.
 
One major influence in the teens of the 1950s dance style was a program called American Bandstand. Dick Clark, the producer and host. Kids watched the show and learned new dances.
 
 
 
How about you? Ever done the Twist, the Jitterbug, Boogie-Woogie, the Hand Jive, or other?
 
 
 
 
 
We did have some slow dancing too.
 
Here are a couple of films to watch to learn more:
Don't Knock the Rock
Rock Around the Clock
 
You'll see performances by Bill Haley's Comets, and Dean Collins style Lindy Hop, adapted to '50s rock&roll
 
Learn more here.
 
Happy Dancing.


25 comments:

  1. I remember watching those dances on TV, It wasn't until the 60s I went dancing.
    Great post, great memories.
    Yvonne.

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    1. Thanks, Yvonne. It didn't take a lot to entertain us then. This has been fun for me, remembering.

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  2. haha can't say I've ever done any of them. I'd trip over my own two feet with ease.

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    1. I kind of have that problem too, Pat. My feet can's seem to get in sync.

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  3. The 50s always looks as if it was the decade for proper dancing!

    A-Z Challenge no 1334

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    1. Dancing was popular then, A. J. We didn't have all of the entertainment kids have today. Thanks for stopping by.

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  4. Seems like it was such a fabulously fun time! I love all those old dances and the clothes - and oh the music!
    Your books look delightful, Beverly :-)

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    1. I guess we did have fun, diedre. Back then we had no computers, few TVs, so we went to the movies and had a lot of dances and parties for our entertainment.

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    2. Oh, and thank you for the nice comment about my books. I enjoy writing. :)

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  5. I haven't done any of these dances, but square dancing looks fun.

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    1. It was fun, Medeia. I belonged to a square dance club for a while, where we had a dance every so often.

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  6. Boy, Bandstand sure was popular. Kind of miss square dancing.
    Pioneer Women in Aviation A-Z


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    1. Bandstand was popular, Sharon. I remember watching it, after we got a TV when I was in high school. There are still square dance clubs in our area. I don't know about elsewhere.

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  7. I was born in Australia in the 60s and we had a version of Bandstand too. I loved the GoGo dancers. Just before Bandstand came on there was a square dancing show called Reg Lindsay's Country Hour. Ah, how times have changed :) Visiting from A-Z.

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    1. Your own Bandstand sounds like fun, Pinky. GoGo dancers sound awesome. Yep, times have changed. Thanks for stopping by.

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  8. We had 50s dances in elementary school. It was the first time I heard the term "sock hop." I grew up in the 80s, so the obsession with the 50s was everywhere. I even worked at a 50s diner when I was in college.

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    1. The good old school days, Stephanie. I well remember the "sock hops". Glad you reminded me. After the football games, everyone went to the gym, took off our shoes (we wore socks back then, hence the name, I suppose) and had a great time. Neat that you worked at a 50s diner.

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  9. Dances from my age group I slightly less charming...a lot of them were bumping and grinding and less about charm and ability as much as it was dry humping. I never much enjoyed them and ended up even skipping prom as a kid.

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    1. Well, that certainly wasn't fun, Robert. It's difficult to explain the behavior of others. Sorry you missed the prom, but it's probably just as well.

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  10. I've probably done the twist before. My parents are probably more familiar with the other dance moves you mentioned here.

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    1. Yes, Cynthia, my boys know little about the 50s. They're more interested in the present and raising their families, which is as it should be. Sometimes parents (like me) enjoy reminiscing, though, and that's sort a what these posts are all about. Thanks for stopping by.

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  11. Here via the A-Z challenge. I have fond memories of going to watch my parents square dancing when I was 6 or 7. Great fun.

    Imagine Me At Clarion

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    1. Hi Helen, thanks for stopping by. I bet watching your parents dance was entertaining. Square dancing is a bit different, but so much fun.

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  12. I loved American Bandstand! The jitterbug is my only option typically though that is very rare!

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    1. The jitterbug, huh. I bet you were great at it, Karin. American Bandstand was a great program for teens and adults as well.

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