Dance Styles of the 20th Century

Dance crazes are nothing new, and folks have been getting their boogie on for many decades after the surge in popular music at the start of the 20th century. Recent disco floor favourites that still linger include the Macarena and Gangnam Style. As long as people need to dance, new ways of getting funky will always come and go. Here are some of the most significant breakthrough crazes of the last century:

The Bunny Hop

This famous dance craze originated as a bit of fun at a high school in San Francisco in 1952. It was created to be an ice-breaker, mixing social dance, but it quickly became a full-on craze. It was based on a similar dance from Finland, and dancers engaged in a conga line, holding the hips of the person in front of them. It was easy to learn and perform, which might explain its vast popularity.

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The Twist

Beginning at the end of 1959 and carrying on through the swinging sixties, the twist was a colossal dance craze that took the world by storm. Conservative critics of the time argued that the dance was too provocative, but it was strong enough to last and inspire future crazes such as the Jerk, the Mashed Potato, and the Funky Chicken. The move was spotted by Hank Ballard, who saw some teenagers doing it in Florida. He then penned the famous song, later to be performed by Chubby Checker, which was a huge hit and made the number spot in the charts in 1960.

The Hustle

A dance requiring a partner, the Hustle was a combination of ballroom-inspired moves and disco music. It became a craze after Van McCoy, and the Soul City Swingers released a song of the same name in 1975. At the peak of its popularity in 1977, the dance appeared in the iconic movie Saturday Night Fever with John Travolta. Another mix of ballroom and disco is Salsa dancing. When you want Salsa Classes London, go to

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The Moonwalk

Anyone who grew up in the 1980s and has subsequently attended a disco has attempted to make Michael Jackson’s Moonwalk move with primarily limited success. While not a dance, Michael Jackson inspired a whole generation of dancers with his unique moves, stunning choreography, and signature poses. The King of Pop has undoubtedly inspired today’s music videos, and a generation of middle-aged people is still trying to moonwalk at wedding discos worldwide!

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