Ballroom Dance Lessons in Clarkston, MI

Types of Ballroom Dance Lessons

At the Clarkston Studio ballroom dance can be enjoyed socially and in dance competitions, and is sometimes referred to as “partnership dancing”, because it is a type of dance that requires a dance partner. Ballroom dancing originated in the 16th century from dances held in the royal courts. There’s also evidence of influence from folk dances of the era – for example, the Waltz began as an 18th century Austrian folk dance.

American Style Ballroom Dance Clarkston, MI

Two Styles of Ballroom Dance

The International Style of ballroom dance was introduced in England in the early 1800s and became popular throughout the rest of the world by the 19th century, through the music of Josef and Johann Strauss. International Style is categorized into two very distinct sub-styles: Standard (or “Ballroom”), and Latin, and is typically used more in the competitive dance circuit. 

Here in the United States, ballroom dance adapted into the American Style between 1910 – 1930 mainly due to the influence of American jazz music, a more social approach to dancing and the iconic dance and choreography talents of Mr. Fred Astaire. Over the years, American Style has expanded to include dances such as Mambo, Salsa and West Coast Swing, and has always been driven by the constant development of music around the world. The American Style of ballroom dance is categorized into two distinct sub-styles: Rhythm and Smooth, and is used in both social and competitive ballroom dance arenas.

The Differences Between International & American Styles

International Style is without a doubt the classic “old school” style of Ballroom. In International Standard, dance partners must remain in a closed dance position continually (meaning they stand in front of each other, in body contact throughout the dance). American Smooth is similar to its counterpart from overseas, but does allow the dancers to separate (called “open position”) in their dance frame. In the beginning stages of training, International Style is more disciplined than American Style (which typically starts first as a social Hobby, then progresses to Sport). 

International Style Ballroom Dance Clarkston, MI

American Style can also include “Exhibition” solo work which allows the couple more freedom in their choreography. Both styles can be very technical with a high level of proficiency requirements, but there is more freedom in the American Style when it comes to closed figures, where the International Style is more strict with fewer figures offered. In the world of ballroom dance competition, there are also differences between the dresses or gowns worn for American versus International Styles. Because dance partners stay in closed position when dancing International, these dresses often have floats coming from the tops which would not be conducive for American Style, which features both open & closed positions.

Wedding Dance Lessons Clarkston MI

Getting YOUR Dance On

At Fred Astaire Dance Studios, we offer instruction in both International and American Ballroom Styles, and then some! And as a Fred Astaire dance student, you choose which dance style you’d like to learn first based on what’s most appealing to you, and your individual dance goals. For example, individuals interested in high-energy lessons for improved physical health would likely choose a different style than couples looking for an elegant First Dance for their wedding. No matter your age, ability level or whether you’re planning to take lessons with a dance partner or on your own – you’ve come to the right place. To learn more about each type of dance and view a demonstration video, simply click on the links to the right. Then give us a call at Fred Astaire Dance Studios, and be sure to ask about our money-saving introductory offer for new students. Together, we’ll get you started on your personal dance journey!

Exploring Ballroom Dance Instruction at Our Studio in Clarkston, MI

Welcome to our ballroom dance studio in Clarkston, MI near Pine Knob Music Theatre, just south on Sashabaw Rd and Maybee Rd, where the art of ballroom dance isn’t just a skill—it’s an exhilarating journey into rhythm, elegance, and partnership. Our studio is dedicated to offering various ballroom dance lessons that cater to individuals and couples of all ages whether social enthusiasts or competitive spirits.

Originating in the grandeur of 16th-century royal courts, ballroom dance has evolved through the ages, drawing inspiration from folk dances and the rich cultural tapestry of different eras. At our dance studio, we embrace this history while immersing ourselves in the contemporary rhythms that keep this art form alive.

American Style Ballroom Dance Clarkston, MI

Two Distinct Styles of Ballroom Dance

The approach we take at our studio in Clarkston, MI explores both, the elegance of International Style and the dynamic flair of American Style. The International Style, tracing its roots to 19th-century England and popularized globally by the musical genius of Josef and Johann Strauss, encompasses Standard (Ballroom) and Latin sub-styles, thriving predominantly in competitive circuits.

In contrast, the American Style, shaped between 1910 and 1930 in the United States, owes its vibrancy to the influence of jazz music and the iconic contributions of dance maestro Mr. Fred Astaire. Evolving over time since the early years, the American Style incorporates diverse dances like Mambo, Salsa, and West Coast Swing, reflecting the ever-evolving global music landscape. It branches into Rhythm and Smooth sub-styles, appealing to social gatherings and ballroom dance competitions.

Distinguishing Characteristics Between Styles

The classic International Style embodies a traditional, “old school” essence, emphasizing a closed dance position throughout the performance. While akin to its international counterpart, the American Smooth variant permits dancers to explore open positions within their dance frame.

International Style Ballroom Dance Clarkston, MI

Early training in the International Style is marked by disciplined precision, often viewed as a foundational step in progressing toward a more sport-oriented approach. On the other hand, the American Style initially manifests as a social hobby, gradually transitioning into a competitive sphere, showcasing “Exhibition” solo work that allows for more expressive choreography.

While both styles of dance demand technical proficiency, the American Style offers greater liberty in closed figures and choreographic expressions. Conversely, the International Style maintains a stricter framework with fewer variations. Even in the world of dance competition, the distinction extends to attire, with dresses tailored to facilitate closed positions in International Style and accommodating open and closed positions in American Style.

Wedding Dance Lessons Clarkston MI

Embark on Your Dance Journey with Us!

Join us on this captivating journey through ballroom dance lessons if you live in or near Clarkston, MI, where history meets innovation, tradition intertwines with creativity, and every step resonates with the joy of dance.

Enroll for classes near you at our top-rated dance studio in Clarkston, where the world of dance unfolds in captivating International and American Styles tailored to your preferences and aspirations. Our certified ballroom dance instructors, backed by teaching methods refined from over 75-years of dance excellence, prioritize your preferences and individual dance objectives allowing us to teach you to dance like the star you are.

Whether you’re drawn to the vivacity of high-energy movements for enhancing physical fitness or envisioning an exquisite first dance for your wedding, our diverse array of ballroom dance lessons caters to every inclination. Our studio is here to support your aspirations regardless of age, skill level, or whether you prefer solo or partnered sessions.

Explore the nuances of each dance style by accessing our informative demonstration videos throughout our website. Then, connect with us at the ballroom dance studio, where we eagerly await to introduce you to our exclusive introductory offer specially crafted for new students like you.

Join us, and together, let’s embark on a dance journey crafted exclusively for your individuality and aspirations!