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Arthur Murray Shag ...
Carolina Shag ...
Collegiate Shag ...
St. Louis Shag ...

There are four distinct and different Shag dances in the Swing dance family tree.

Click links on left for more info on each shag version ... or search above.


Below is a brief description from each page

1) Arthur Murray Shag :
    The "Shag" Arthur Murray taught was actually a newer version of the "Collegiate Shag" that was done in the 1920's by the College kids but was slightly different than the "Collegiate" or "8 Count Swing Balboa" as done today.

2) The Carolina Shag :
    The Carolina Shag is considered a main form of Swing Dance. It is the Official State Dance of South Carolina (since 1984.) Originally written, the Carolina Shag formed out of the Charleston, and Collegiate Shag. However, today there is no resemblance to them at all. The name, Carolina Shag originated at Myrtle Beach in So. Carolina in the 1930's, when back then, the dance was originally a mix of the Charleston and Collegiate Shag (according to 10/1938-Dance Index Magazine's article on the dance. "Carolina Shag" descriptions) with some of the original basic steps being called the: Cuban Step, Shuffle, Twinkle, etc.

3) The Collegiate Shag :
   The Collegiate Shag ... originated in the South (possibly New Orleans) and has been known at times as the "Flea Hop" (not just the dance variation.) The Shag was popular in the late 1920's and supposedly predates the Lindy Hop with the collage students. It was primarily danced to fast Ragtime - Jazz type music. There were many Intercollegiate Dance Contests held in NYC in the 1920s-1930's which held a "Collegiate Shag Division, Conklin and Coleman won this type of division. Virginia Beach was a hot spot for the Collegiate shag as some eastern cities banned the dance.

4) The Saint Louis Shag :
      The Saint Louis Shag ... originally came from the Charleston (according to Kenny Wetzel) rather than the Collegiate Shag back in the 1920's. Arthur Murray's book, "Down Memory Lane" spoke of a dance called the "St. Louis Hop. " Murray reported it was very "fast and strenuous" (could be the start of the St. Louis Shag). It is primarily done in the St. Louis Area.
April 10, 2013

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