Dancing in the 1920’s Compared to Dancing Now

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Table of contents

  1. Dance Moves
  2. Events
  3. Clothes

“Dancers are the athletes of God”. 'Good morning/afternoon honourable judges, teachers, staff, parents, and fellow students'. That quote was made by Albert Einstein. As u know Albert Einstein is scientist but he did love dance. Dancing is considered a sport that allows you to express your feelings through movement. It entertains others and is really fun to do. I know that because I dance. Dance is hard even though it might seem easy. I dance about 17 hours a week. But that’s not what I’m talking about today. Today I will be talking to you about the differences about dancing in the 1920’s and now, the 2000’s.

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Dance Moves

In the early 20’s, dancing started to get more and more popular. It was a wild and carefree time. It was a time to bust out all your best moves like the famous Charleston, a dance danced to a mainstream song. The Fox Trot, a smooth, progressive, long dance that was danced to big band music. The Texas Tommy, was a very exciting swing dance and was also the first swing dance. The Shimmy, a dance that used the movement of shoulders. The Black Bottom, which used a lot of movement in the arms and legs. And the Jitterbug, which was a mixture of other dances, and more. These moves are very different to the types of moves today. Moves back then were hard and very specific, they had to be exact and precise. The 20’s also had a completely different style compared to now. 2000’s moves are nothing like that. A move now is just the bending of your arm which is called the dab. Majority of dance moves these days are from video games like Fortnite. These include Orange Justice, moving your arms in different directions than your body. The Floss, moving your hips and arms, and The Shoot, moving your legs in the direction of your arm and more. None of these moves these days are complicated there are only complicated when you mash them together or put them in a routine. Doing them by themselves can sometimes just be a walk in the park.


During the 1920’s, there was no such thing as competition but there was marathon dancing. At first, marathon dancing was about the best dancer but later became about the couple that could stay the longest on the dance floor. The winner would be given money as their prize. The record was 1 week, 3 days, 7 hours, and 20 minutes. In the 2000’s there is something called competition. It is the same as a playoff or tournament except for dance. People from different studios come and show off their hard work to judges. The judges than mark you on how well you did, and you can get ribbons, medals, and trophy's depending on how well you did. Not too long ago, I went to my first competition of this season and got 1st. I was awarded with a medal. Also, now there are TV shows you can go on and show the world how good of a dancer you are such as; “So You Think You Can Dance”, “Americas Got Talent”, and “World of Dance”. That’s not even all, now dancing can be your career, back then that wasn’t an option. Dancing was just for fun; it was like just going to a party.


While dancing in the 1920’s, women wore a corset and a tight, fitting girdle underneath a long, flowy dress. A corset is like a tight undershirt. A girdle is like a tight, thick, belt. As time went by, dresses got shorter to about just above the knee, they were usually around the calf before. Unlike dresses, shoes got taller to around 3 inches. These shoes were called flapper shoes or sally shoes. They were like a high-heels except they were decorated with lots of straps. Men wore casual sporting shirts or a suit depending on the night. Their shoes were leather and had rubber insoles. Today, both men and women wear sparkly and colourful costumes. Their costumes are based on the story the routine is trying to tell. The shoes they wear depend on the genre of dance. For example, for ballet you would wear ballet shoes. For tap, you would wear tap shoes etc.

In conclusion, dance has changed over the years by a lot. There is a big difference between dancing now and dancing back then. Dancing isn’t only for fun because it has helped many escape from bad things like the Great Depression, and WW2. Without dancing there would be a big hole in my heart. I hope you learned a lot about the differences about dancing in the 1920’s compared to now. And always remember that’s “Dancers are the athletes of God.”

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