Casual dancers might never guess it, but competitive ballroom dancing is so demanding, so athletic that’s it’s considered a sport! It’s now officially known as “dance sport.” Competitive ballroom dancing, aka dance sport, has a long history. The first (unofficial) world championship took place way back in 1909. “Formation dancing” was added to the repertoire in 1932. The sport’s governing body, the World Dance Sport Federation has been around since 1957. Although dance sport hasn’t actually been an Olympic event, the WDSF (with its 90 member countries) is still recognized by the International Olympic Committee. There are several major styles of dance sport: International Standard, International Latin, American Smooth, and American Rhythm.
In formation dancing, an entire team of paired male and female dancers bust out the moves. However, the moves are anything but random. The team’s choreographer has to design the routine and do so while working on two levels: the couple and the entire group. Judges at competitions are careful to note how well-synchronized each team’s performance is.
The Latin style of dance sport is the result of a centuries-long process of mixing an interesting group of influences: European, indigenous South American, African, and American. Today’s formation International Latin regularly features the cha cha, rhumba, jive, paso doble, and samba.
At the 2014 world championship in Bremen, Germany, the formation dancers of DUET Perm put on an amazing display of dance moves and athletics. The group is from Russia but they know their Latin music and dance! They must have spent countless hours rehearsing their routine and all that practice definitely paid off! They stay in harmony with the choreography and keep up with the fast beat of the Latin music. See for yourself in the video we’ve posted below.
Did the dancers of DUET Perm knock your socks off? Let us know in the comments at Facebook. And be sure to like and share so your friends can discover the wonderful world of dance sport.