Collegiate Shag - Where To Dance
Where To Dance

Dance Style - Collegiate Shag

Collegiate Shag: An In-Depth Exploration

The Collegiate Shag, a vibrant and energetic dance, emerged in the 1930s and gained popularity among college students in the United States. Known for its hopping basic step and exuberant energy, it's a dance that embodies the lively spirit of the swing era.

Origins and Historical Context

Rooted in the 1920s and 30s, the Collegiate Shag was a response to the big band and swing music of the era. It was particularly popular among college youth, hence the name 'Collegiate'. Its origins are a blend of various dances of the time, including elements from the Charleston and the Lindy Hop.

Characteristics and Style

  • Upbeat and Energetic: The dance is characterized by its fast-paced, hopping steps, making it a lively and athletic dance form.
  • Partner Dance: Typically danced in a closed or semi-closed position, it emphasizes a strong connection between partners.
  • 6-Count Basic: The basic step is a 6-count pattern that involves a lot of leg movement and minimal upper body movement.

Cultural Impact and Revival

While the popularity of the Collegiate Shag waned after World War II, it experienced a revival in the late 20th century. Today, it is celebrated in swing dance communities around the world, often featured in dance competitions and social dance events.

Modern-Day Scene

The modern-day Shag scene is a testament to the dance's enduring appeal. Workshops, festivals, and competitions dedicated to the Collegiate Shag continue to attract new generations of dancers, keeping the spirit of this historical dance alive and thriving.