Few styles of art can come close to fully conveying the extremities of dancing.
It’s our way to gracefully show all the beautiful thoughts that fall flat when expressed in words. The intricacies bring nuance to every style of dancing that can appeal from the most casual of fans to the most hardcore enthusiasts.
What is the Shag?
Originated and heavily popular in the Carolinas, the shag is commonly attributed to the beach towns of North Carolina and South Carolina. It’s a dance that involves two people with the male leading the way. It opens up with some fundamental steps, which then opens up and can be very improvisational.
Historians have traced the origin back to the early settlers of the Carolina colony. The settlers, in order to preserve their European musical lineage, formed the St. Cecilia Society in Charles Towne (Charleston), S.C., in the 1760’s. Influences don’t just stop there. The Shag can even be traced back to African roots.
This was the older style of the Shag. Eventually, the catchy dance made its ways to the shores of South and North Carolina during the 40’s and 50’s where it caught fire. Many big stars such as Billy Jeffers, “Chicken” Hicks, and “Big” George Linberry paved the way with their own unique twists to the already popular dance.
This brings us to a viral clip of two spectacular Shag dancers.
The expertise and professionalism of Sam West and Kristal Taylor come together like never before. The National SHAG Dance Championship brings together a show like no other. It’s comprised of a three-night competition that is held every year in North Myrtle Beach.
Needless to say, the competition is very stiff! The shaggers compete in six divisions: Junior I, Junior II, Non-Pro, Pro, Senior’s and Master’s.
As the show began, the two started to spin in dazzling fashion. West’s smooth leg work is phenomental to witness. His footwork almost immaculate with how he is able to stay balanced and still twist and turn at that speed.
Let’s not underestimate his partner, Kristal Taylor! She exudes impenetrable confidence with each step that lands on the dancefloor. Most impressive is her smile that stays put on her face to illuminate the entire room. The audience has no choice but to ooh and ahh whenever they get the chance!
Several key signature moves are demonstrated flawlessly by the dynamic duo. A groovy twist over shoulders and a fancy shuffle of the feet make the first couple of routines seem more than doable. It was the energy and flair that both these dancers brought that made their moves that much better.
Next, we have a moment where the dancers really turn it up a notch.
About the halfway point, the two demonstrate an eccentric move that puts Kristal in slow motion as Sam carefully sways her in front of him. It’s enough to garner attention from the crowd and was even special enough to capture the attention of the judges!
The riveting performance continues in delightful taste. It’s as if they keep spinning faster and faster and faster! So fast, in fact, that Sam decided to have a moment of improvisation where he stands still and spins his leg like a tornado.
As the show concluded with the music dwindling in the back, Kristal and Sam finalized their last spin. The crowd roared in excitement and appreciation for the amazing dance experience!
After the dust settled, the couple awaited the results from the judges…
This year’s competition at the National SHAG Dance Championship was noteworthy, but it was the astounding performance of Sam and Kristal that took that year’s number one spot!
Given what we witnessed, it was really no surprise.
If you haven’t yet, take a look for yourself and see why they deserved to win in the video below!
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