The dances feature synchronized movements and percussive beats. Step Afrika! African Roots of American Step Dance By Peter Szego Our understanding of the African roots of American vernacular rhythm dance—buck dancing, flat footing, and tap dance—is complicated by the extraordinary popularity of blackface minstrelsy through much of the 19th century. At first, the step started off with a simple twisting of the feet, to rhythm in a lazy sort of way. Step dancing, or "soulstepping," is a form of competitive dance exhibition developed by African American fraternities and sororities in North Carolina and other southern states. Tune in to the virtual premiere of Step Afrika!’s soul stirring new work, No Justice, No Peace. Blog Jan. 20, 2021 Over 1 million people now use Prezi Video to share content with their audiences Jan. 15, 2021 How to create a webinar that resonates with remote audiences Dec. 30, 2020 Prezi’s Big Ideas 2021 Hand dancing was born and bred in Washington, D.C., during the Motown era, which began in the late 1950s. Stepping has its beginnings in the early African American slave community as a means of communication and keeping hold of traditional aspects of their denied culture. For more than forty years I have shared adapted West African stories with audiences in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area. I have four, , , and . Stepping has been described as “one of the most exciting dance forms created in the 21stcentury.” Watch now! I'm an African American mother, grandmother, & retired human services administrator. Comments are not published until reviewed by NCpedia editors at the State Library of NC, and the editors reserve the right to not publish any comment submitted that is considered inappropriate for this resource. Africans brought their dances to North and South America, and the Caribbean Islands as slave labor starting in the 1500s. The Lindy Hop is an American dance which was born in the African-American communities in Harlem, New York City, in 1928 and has evolved since then. If you prefer not to leave an email address, check back at your NCpedia comment for a reply. All rights reserved. Thank you to AARP for being an amazing sponsor for our 25th Anniversary Celebration! Step dancing has developed and is still alive today. Step Afrika!, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, is the first professional company in the world dedicated to the tradition of stepping. About Press Copyright Contact us Creators Advertise Developers Terms Privacy Policy & Safety How YouTube works Test new features Image courtesy of Joe Focus, uploaded January 13, 2006. Step dancing can be traced back to the very beginning of the African American experience and was a rich part of early American culture. On Thursday evening Step Afrika!’s signature performance shares the step tradition of audience participation and closes with a complex, polyrhythmic percussive symphony that brings audiences to their feet. Popularized on the campuses of historically black colleges and universities, the informal shows evolved to public exhibitions, often used as fund-raisers for charitable causes. Stepping is a percussive, highly-energetic art form first developed through the song and dance rituals performed by African-American fraternities and sororities. – Stepping has had a long tradition in African and Black communities. is the first professional Dance Company in the world dedicated to … Founded in 1994, as an exchange program with the Soweto Dance Theatre of Johannesburg, Step Afrika! New to the North Carolina Digital Collections! #MaskItUp combines the African American art form of stepping and Go-Go, the official music of Washington, DC to amplify this critical public health message. Elizabeth C. Fine, Soulstepping: African American Step Shows (2003). For personal use and not for further distribution. While the dance probably came from the "star" or challenge dances that were all part of the African-American dance called Juba, the particular sequence of steps which appeared in Runnin' Wild were probably newly devised for popular appeal. " According to dancer, dance historian, and scholar Jacqui Malone, who has written extensively about African American movement arts, “What we notice first and foremost in contemporary stepping is the sound of the drum.” The drum sound, however, is not created by a drum, because stepping is performed without musical instruments. The Company is featured prominently at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African-American History & Culture with the world’s first stepping interactive exhibit. While the beginning of step dancing dates back to older fraternity rituals, the term "stepping" became popular in the 1980s. In stepping, the body becomes an instrument, using footsteps, claps and spoken word to produce complex poly-rhythms. If you would like a reply by email, note that some email servers, such as public school accounts, are blocked from accepting messages from outside email servers or domains. Modern day stepping also uses elements of tap dancing, break dancing, gymnastics and Afro-Caribbean dance. Also in the '70s, with the rise of disco dancing, the intersections between the Puerto Rican and African-American community in New York City created a new fusion,The Latin Hustle. Encyclopedia of North Carolina, University of North Carolina Press. Learn more about Step Afrika! *This date is dedicated to African American Dance. It is essentially a smooth version of the Lindy Hop that features almost constant hand holding and turning between Dance has always been an integral part of … Used by permission of the publisher. PLEASE NOTE: NCpedia provides the comments feature as a way for viewers to engage with the resources. 's full-time artists. One of the most popular step shows, the East Coast Step Show, originated on the campus of North Carolina's Fayetteville State University in 1998. Step dancing, or "soulstepping," is a form of competitive dance exhibition developed by African American fraternities and sororities in North Carolina and other southern states. [1] These dances are usually centered on folk and social dance practice, though performance dance often supplies complementary aspects to this. American Clogging is associated with the predecessor to bluegrass—"old-time" music, which is based on English, and Irish fiddle tunes as well as African banjo tunes. Label vector designed by Ibrandify - Freepik.com. African-American dance has developed within Black American communities in everyday spaces, rather than in studios, schools or companies. Now that the form has been featured in Hollywood fi lms like Step Up and Stomp the Yard, step-dancing is entering the global main-stream of popular entertainment. Step Show. Step dancing has a rich history. College step teams come from throughout the East and South to compete, with the prize money designated for the winning team's community projects. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher. NCpedia will not publish personal contact information in comments, questions, or responses. Its origins can be found in the traditions of competitive drill teams and marching bands and take their movement patterns from African and slave dances such as patting juba and ring shouts. Complete guidelines are available at https://ncpedia.org/about. Please allow one business day for replies from NCpedia. African-American college fraterni-ties. Step dancing is a showcase for exhibiting a team's individual style and showing its unity. Tune in to the We Are One event to catch Step Afrika! It served mainly as a link back to African tribal dance, … Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. historically black colleges and universities, https://www.flickr.com/photos/okiboi/86305468/. Step dancing is a dance where the movement of the feet takes precedence over any other element of the dance. Available from https://www.flickr.com/photos/okiboi/86305468/ (accessed May 31, 2012). FUN FACTS ABOUT STEP AFRIKA! Privacy Policy. Susan Eike Spalding and Jane Harris Woodside, eds., Communities in Motion: Dance, Community and Tradition in America's Southeast and Beyond (1995). The dance styles of hundreds of African ethnic groups merged with European dances, forming the extension of the African aesthetic in the Americas. Step Afrika!’s signature performance shares the step tradition of audience participation and closes with a complex, polyrhythmic percussive symphony that brings audiences to their feet. It was very popular during the swing era of the late 1930s and early 1940s. 1333 H Street NE, Washington DC 20002, Copyright © 2021 Step Afrika!. This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. In recent years, step dancing organizations in the United States have established cultural ties to the Gumboot dancers of South Africa through Step Afrika!, an organization that hosts an international festival each year in Soweto, South Africa. Clogging primarily developed from Irish step dancing called Sean-nós dance ; [2] there was also some English, Scottish, German, and Cherokee step dances, as well as African rhythms and movement … 's performance on Tuesday January 19 at 8pm/et. Where the movement of the feet, to rhythm in a lazy sort of way ethnic groups merged with dances. Showing its unity, copyright © 2006 by the University of North,!, & retired human services administrator copyright © 2021 Step Afrika! 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