What Is Vernacular Jazz Dance?

Vernacular Jazz Dance is a general term that encompasses a long list of dances with African American roots. Another general term you might have heard of is “Swing Dancing”, and that is definitely part of it. Vernacular Jazz Dance includes both partner and solo dancing. We think of it as dances, rooted in African American traditions and movements, done to jazz music from the late 1800s to beyond. These dances include the Lindy Hop, Tap, Charleston, Black Bottom, Cakewalk etc.

Here is an excellent description of what Vernacular Jazz Dance by Harri Heinila:


Here are some times past, and modern day examples of the dance

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