“It’s the music that makes you move,” and by City Council resolution, Hand Dance is the official dance of DC.
Developed in the Washington, DC area in the early 1950s by African Americans as a form of recreation and entertainment, Hand Dance is rooted in the floor version of swing. In the early days, the best dancers honed their skills at Turner’s Arena, Lincoln Colonnade, and the U-Line Arena to the tunes of big bands led by Louis Jordan and Big Joe Turner. In the 1960s, the tempo slowed down to the music of Motown, Chicago Soul and the Stax Records sound.
How is this DC tradition evolving to appeal to the next generation of Washingtonians? And what makes a good Hand Dance DJ?
Join HumanitiesDC and the National Hand Dance Association for a discussion, a demonstration, and lessons!
What is a Humanitini?
A public program of HumanitiesDC, the National Endowment for the Humanities nonprofit state affilate for the District of Columbia, Humanitini is an exciting happy hour event where Washington’s movers, shakers, and creators come together to think and drink. It is a place for you to engage with your peers, meet your neighbors, and speak with experts about what makes our city a unique place to live and play.