WHAT…is Jazz?

Jazz originated from a blend of African dance, modern and Caribbean dance. The style of African dance is typically low, knees bent, with body isolations and hand-clapping. These characteristics were carried through and evolved in America and are seen in Jazz also. Jazz is commonly used in Musical Theatre shows.

WHO…do we thank?

The Jazz we see today was formulated and popularised in America. Key pioneers that led the evolution of Jazz include Jack Cole, Jerome Robbins and Bob Fosse. The latter being the creator of the styles seen in “Cabaret” and “Chicago”.

WHERE…was it born?

The origins of both Jazz music and dance are found in the rhythms and movements brought to America by African slaves. From a mix of African and Caribbean movements as well as Ballet, the style we now recognise as Jazz was born. 

WHEN…was it first seen?

Jazz emerged in the 1930s and continued growing through the 1960s to become one of the most popular dance styles. Fred Astaire in 1930s created a unique dance style that brought elegance to the dancer’s image. He blended the flowing steps of ballet with the abruptness of Jazz movements to redefine musical numbers.

WHY…was it created?

During the roaring 20s and the 30s, Jazz music was extremely popular, therefore Jazz dance was seen as the physical embodiment of popular music. The varieties of jazz dance reflect the diversity of American culture. Jazz dance mirrors the social history of the American people, reflecting ethnic influences, historic events, and cultural changes.

So…what will this class include?

Similar to the structure of Contemporary; in our Jazz classes each week we focus on building technique and form through exercises, then expressing and showcasing movements through a dance routine. 

Join Pip for Jazz Dance on Mondays 7pm-8pm!