*disclaimer: The dance knowledge section is based on our current observations, research, and/or interviews. What we write here is merely just to shed some light onto the subject to those interested in learning about these topics. We will continue to update these with every bit of information we can find. If you’d like to contribute to any of these sections, feel free to contact us. Enjoy!
UK JAZZ DANCE
Bebop and Fusion started around the late 70s early 80s in the clubs with it’s roots in the Soul scene. Danced to music that was primarily heavy Jazz Fusion, Funk, Afro Latin Jazz, and Bebop. The style revolves around very fast footwork. Pioneers of these styles came from dance groups such as Brothers in Jazz, Jazz Defektors, Foot Patrol, and IDJ (I Dance Jazz). The Brothers in Jazz style, called “Bebop”, seemed like blends of more traditional movements from mambo, and tap. While IDJ’s style looks like various street styles, which they called Fusion. Both styles were Jazzy, and were definitely driven from the clubs. UK Jazz Dance as a whole involves a lot of intricate footwork and speed. It is very different than studio style Jazz Dancing like Fosse, or Broadway type Jazz Dance.
Bebopsquare is a good site for this. The site is in Japanese though =(. It is not very big in the US. Japan and UK is where I notice it exists the most. Even Korea has a few groups who do this style.
*Other noteable groups throughout the years are Floor Technicians, Jazzcotech Dancers, Sound Cream Steppers, Stax Groove, to name a few.
There is a book out there by DJ Snowboy called, “FROM JAZZ FUNK & FUSION TO ACID JAZZ: THE HISTORY OF THE UK JAZZ DANCE SCENE” where he talks about the UK Jazz Dance Scene. Plenty of information here as he interviewed over 200 dancers and djs during it’s writing process.
Check out this clip of the Bebop style by Brothers in Jazz, and the Fusion style by IDJ
Additional comments by Julian 10.23.09
UK Jazz Fusion style of dancing evolved through the soul and funk dancing in the early 1970s at places like Ronnie Scott’s, and the new, younger generation of Funk dancers (who would later create the jazz fusion dance) incorporated the moves and styles from their Funk predecessors who were still cutting it on the dance floor in the mid-late 1970s, and this is why UK Jazz Dance (which is not the proper term, it is known as “Fusion”) is FUNK based, musically too. It evolved into its own unique style in 1979. There is more info at this site: http://www.thebottomend.co.uk