Standard dancing or ballroom dancing, represents eternal romance of the partners’ dance. The combination of music and synchronised steps executed in close embrace make standard dancing both elegant and formal at the same time.
Standard dances became popular at the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century, when they were the symbol of aristocracy, but later gained popularity among wider population. Dancing competitions become popular at the beginning of the 20th century.
International competition standard dances include five dancing styles: Slow Waltz, Tango, Viennese Waltz, Slow Fox and Quick Step.
The movements and steps in standard dances are standardized and the couples are assessed based on their performances in the fields of step techniques, music interpretation, ballroom skill, body posture, rhythm following and technical skill, i.e. synchronised movements of the dancers.
Each of the five standard dances expresses its own specific character.
English, or slow waltz is “a dance of the heart”, with gentle moves and rhythmic sway, characterized by sentimentality and romance. Tango is an emotional dance of a romantic couple and specific sliding step expressing it.
“The king” of the 19th century ballrooms is the Viennese Waltz, where partners rotate around the circular dance floor in the ballroom. This dynamic dance won over the salons and balls as the first social dance. Its sophistication, elegance and liveliness are the synonyms of the magnificent Viennese Waltz.
Slow Fox is the dance simulating the movements of waves. This dance was based on foxtrot, the dance symbolising the spirit of American higher classes. It is characterized by long, extended steps carried out at a slow pace. Foxtrot was the base for quick step, too. It is also referred to as quick foxtrot. Due to its quick, lively rhythm, it requires light-hearted movements and mobility. What is characteristic of this dance are quick gallops and low jumps and leaps.