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By Arthur Murray


The Hustle gives us the fusion of Swing and Disco.



Discotheques (Disco) with high quality sound systems, and flashing lights became a popular form of entertainment in Europe and America in the late 1960’s and throughout the 70’s. In the early 1970’s a new dance craze became popular on the crowded dance floors of New York. This “Touch Disco” was called the Hustle. The Hustle marked on return to popular dances where couples danced touching each other. The popularity of modern and “retro” music with “disco” beat keeps this dance fresh, exciting and full of energy for today.



Disco music is normally written in 2/4 or 4/4 time with a strong bass beat. The melody and beat are based on rhythm and blues and the accent on each of the bass beats makes the music hard to resist.



Turns, spins and wraps are primary components of the Hustle. The more accomplished dancers will use syncopated timing and fakes along with elaborate arm styling.


Teaching Elements:

  • Hustler Basics                        Concentrate on turns and position changes
  • Open Breaks                          Teach fingertip lead & follow, arm control
  • Footwork                                Work on weight changes in rotation
  • Connections                            Prepare for unity of movement & control of body
  • Hustle Motion & Accents     Stress use of beats to steps, body to music
  • Various Timings                      Use straight and syncopated timing
  • Compare/Contrast                 Swing, Lindy, Cha Cha, Merengue


Hustle songs and artists include:

I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor

Last Dance – Donna Summer

Believe – Cher