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Burn The Floor

by Amber Henrie
October 26, 2009
New York, NY
I recently saw Burn the Floor on Broadway. The show which focuses on Ballroom dancing is a hit with the press and public. Towards the end of the summer the show was grossing the largest revenue out of the other 19 Broadway shows and playing at 98%. Thanks to the help of TV shows Dancing With The Stars, and So You Think You Can Dance Ballroom dancing is on the rise. Ballroom studios in the NYC area have enjoyed increased enrollment (especially the first couple years these shows graced TV).

Burn the Floor is two hours of non-stop beauty, creativity, and daring tricks. Adrenaline packed, all 32 dancers (each with a bio full of various championship titles within the amateur and professional ballroom industry) captivate the audience with fluid transitions between dance forms and dynamic technique. During the length of the show the dancers don't get much time to rest. I'm astounded by their stamina as I'm aware of how difficult it is to dance at their intensity for the duration of this show.

Choreographer and World champion Jason Gilkison starting dancing as a young boy in his grandfather's studio. Less and less we hear of cultural and family traditions such as this being passed down through generations. My parents grew up with Fred and Ginger and followed the same style in their high school dances. I pray this show and the TV shows will help the world move away from the "teddy bear hug" dance forms.

While most of the ballroom dance styles were briefly represented the focus was on the Latin dances. I would have liked to have seen the same intensity that was brought to the Latin choreography displayed in the complexity and grace of the Standard dances - rather than putting the Standard dances on the backseat. There was only one couple whose core discipline was Standard, the other couples were focused in the Latin discipline.

Burn the Floor does reinvent Ballroom - but it is not a typical Broadway show. There is no story line, plot, or script. The show is 100% dance, and to be honest I'm surprised yet ecstatic that the show made it to such a high bill as Broadway. The limited engagement was extended from October to January 3, 2010 - so come to Broadway and watch one of the greatest displays of Ballroom dance to ever hit the stage.
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