Even if you don’t think you’ve seen dancehall dancing being performed, you almost certainly will have done. A lot of hip-hop dance moves are inspired by (or actually are) dancehall dance moves. So if you’ve ever watched a music video, you have probably seen dancehall!
Dancehall began as a music movement in late 1970s Jamaica and its name is referring to the physical dance halls in which people used to congregate. There was a real racial and cultural divide at the time, so dance halls were a place where the black working class could meet, socialize, and have fun together.
- Awesome Dancehall Choreo by Polina Dubkova
- Machika Dancehall Choreo by Lesya & Polina
- Dancehall Superstars Maru and Fraules
The music of dancehall is a shift from reggae to a more modern sound, with the use of electronic instruments. A hallmark of dancehall music is the use of riddims (digital rhythms) over which different singers can perform different lyrics. Some riddims feature in hundreds of songs.
Dancehall dancing is ever-changing, ever-growing, and ever-evolving. Dance moves that are inspired by big songs are constantly being added to the mix, so if you spend a few years out of the scene you can really lose touch with the moves that are being used! Check out this video by Mr Eazi and Dre Skull to see some incredible dancehall dancing that is right up to date!
Some popular dancehall moves:
- Dutty wine – stand or kneel on the floor, swinging your head in a circular motion while also rotating your buttocks.
- The bogle – point your hands in the air in a flailing stead motion while moving your body like a snake.
- Heel and toe – jump, then land with one foot in front of the other, with one foot on the heel and one on the toe. Then pivot in a circle while moving your upper torso and arms.
But these moves don’t even come close to beginning to scratch the surface of all of the different dancehall moves there are out there, and more are being added all the time. Check out this website to keep up to date on the latest dancehall moves, and have fun!
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