Throughout history, leap day is also known as “Ladies Day” or “Ladies’ Privilege.” Reports reveal Scottish law in the 1200s as well as Irish legend support leap day as the only day women were allowed to propose marriage to men. Every four years, an extra day is added to the month of February. The additional 24 hours ensure that the calendar stays in line with the earth’s movement around the sun, Encyclopedia Britannica reports. It takes the earth 365.25 days to orbit the sun, and every four years we add a day to the calendar to accommodate the extra quarter of a day. Take the opportunity of an additional 24 hours to discover the lifelong joy of ballroom dancing with the special man in your life.
Ballroom dancing provides a fun night out on the town and gives you the opportunity to learn a new skill and improve your physical fitness. Dancing is the perfect combination of physical activity, social interaction and mental stimulation. Ballroom dancing is a wonderful outlet for self-expression and can reduce stress and alleviate depression.
Numerous dancers and musicians celebrate their birthdays on leap day. Individuals born on February 29 are aptly named “leaplings.” Historically, leaplings were cursed with a life of bad luck. But, in the case of the music industry, leaplings are thriving. Some of the popular singers born on the last day of February are Jimmy Dorsey, saxophonist, composer and bandleader; Dinah Shore, an American singer and actress; and Ja Rule, a popular rapper. A notable leapling dancer is Rukmini Devi. She was a legendary dancer and choreographer of the Indian classical dance form of Bharatanatyam.
To celebrate leap day, check out how these dancers perform graceful leaps and jumps on the big screen.
Jennifer Grey’s character in “Dirty Dancing” achieves the lift she has been practicing throughout the movie during the last scene.
The Nicholas brothers perform the jive with Cab Calloway in this excerpt from the film “Stormy Weather.”
Take a look at the leaps and twirls in Marilyn Monroe’s classic, “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend” in the movie, “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.”
Perhaps the movie with the most iconic jumps is Gene Kelly’s performance in “Singing in the Rain.”
Contact your local Fred Astaire Dance Studios location for special events and offers to celebrate leap day with the special someone in your life this month.