Waltz - When the Waltz was introduced into Britain in 1812 from Austria, it met with much opposition and ridicule. It was not taken seriously until 1816, Emperor Alexander danced it at Almack's. Eventually it became the most popular dance of the last four decades.
Quickstep - The Quickstep originated in America at around the turn of the 20th century, in response to the 'new beat', in the form of the one-step. As big bands became more popular, the music of the one step, with its lack of syncopation, gradually faded out. Then came the Charleston explosion, which left a vivid impression on dancers of the day. By the 1927 championships, the one-step had been replaced by the quick-time foxtrot, which soon became the quickstep.
Foxtrot - Although the name was not recognised until just after the First World War, and the dance was not standardised until many years later, the idea behind it had been germinating in America for quite a time, created in response to the 'new beat'. It is thought that the 'fox' came into it through Harry Fox, a Vaudville entertainer who trotted across the stage thus becoming Harry Fox's Trot, shortened to Foxtrot in later years. By 1910 New York was buzzing with excitement over a fantastic dance called the Foxtrot.
Tango - The dance was born in the backstreet Bordello's of Buenos Aires over 100 years ago. It was danced by single men and local prostitutes, creating the original sexual choreography. In 1910 Tango fever hit Paris, where more erotic features were smoothed out. Within a year or so 'Tango Teas' in London became popular, and during the 1920's the steps were standardised into their present day form.
Viennese Waltz - The Viennese Waltz can be traced back to the Alpine folk dances of Austria and Germany.For hundreds of years the dance existed in Inns and Taverns in a form where the couples rotated on the spot with close body contact often on tables. When the dance was urbanised in the late 18th and early 19th Century into the great ballrooms of Vienna, the space and smooth floors brought about a transition from the previous hopping and stamping to smooth, gliding movements that has become world famous.