Dance Tidbits – Viennese Waltz

If you take dancesport/ ballroom competition seriously, than by now you know that you must learn certain dances to perfection. You could also be looking at a professional career to sustain you a lifetime if you have undeniable skill and possess the divine elegance to entertain in a formal ball by dancing the Viennese Waltz.

The Viennese Waltz developed in the 1920’s in Germany and Austria. It’s true origin is not well known although as early at the 14th century it was noted as an English country dance as well as a German dance of Bavaria. It is believed that the Viennese Waltz developed from the Minuet as people got bored and wanted a dance that moved a little quicker.

In theory the Viennese Waltz is quite formal but extremely exciting to perform. The Viennese Waltz has been popular all over the world for over 200 years. It is the oldest and most romantic of the current ballroom dances. They say that the real Viennese Waltz consists only of turns and change steps. As the Waltz evolved, some of the versions that were done at the fast tempos came to be called Viennese Waltz. It was the first ballroom dance to be performed in the closed hold or waltz position. Countries like Germany, Austria, Scandinavia and France all embrace the Viennese Waltz only and not the slow Waltz. Many people call the Viennese Waltz the original form of the Waltz.

In Austria, balls and formal dance events would not even exist without the Viennese Waltz. It is part of Austrian culture. It is considered the folk dance of Germany and Austria. It is the accepted dance of both society and ballroom. In 1963 the Viennese Waltz was added to the Welttanz Programm; the fundament of European dancing schools. In the modern ballroom, two versions of Viennese Waltz are recognized: International Style and American Style. The difference is that the American Style has more freedom in dance positions and syllabus.

If you are thinking that the Viennese Waltz is a very old dance and a bit passé think again. the Viennese Waltz. When you get the chance to dance this dance competitively, it is your opportunity to prove that you are every bit the exceptional ballroom dancer you hope to be. Think how elegant and regal you will look in your ball gowns and tailcoats. Now with grace and style go out there and show everyone how well you can do it!

Happy dancing,

Thought Of The Week:

“In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life – it goes on.” Robert Frost



Shane Meuwissen is the Media Specialist for Fordney Foundation.  He is a former dance instructor who know works with his company Slow Motion Dance Videos capture the beauty of dancing. If you would like to learn more about Shane and his video work, visit his website