About Powerhouse Blues
Powerhouse Blues is a weekly social dance in Philadelphia, PA. We meet to dance the blues, an improvised social partner dance done to Blues music. With weekly lessons and social dance parties, we celebrate the living history and expressive variety of the Blues. Powerhouse Blues strives to be an inclusive and diverse community open to all regardless of age, race, gender, ethnicity, sexuality, ability, experience, background, or lifestyle.
We welcome dancers of all experience levels!
Philadelphia Ethical Society
1906 Rittenhouse Square
Philadelphia, PA 19103
7:30pm - 8:30pm
No need to sign up. Just show up! Pay at the door with cash, venmo, or paypal.
8:30pm - 10:30pm
With DJed or live music
$10-$15 pay what you wish.
Free for volunteers!
Mondays at 7:30-8:30p at Philadelphia Ethical Society
Classes are held each week before our dance! Classes usually take place upstairs. Whether you are new to blues dance or have some experience, we have one class we tailor to all levels present. If you are looking for private instruction, write to us!
Please note that we still are conscious of those at high risk for COVID-19. If you feel ill with COVID or any other illness you should stay home and avoid getting others sick.
MASKS ARE REQUIRED ON THE FIRST MONDAY OF EACH MONTH
Q: What happens at your weekly event? How does it all work?
A: We dance every Monday at The Philadelphia Ethical Society!
Our instructors teach an all levels class from 7:30pm to 8:30pm. Topics include basic blues steps, partner connection, blues dance etiquette, lag, breakaway/solo, jukin' musicality, close embrace, traveling, ballroomin' musicality, tension and compression, turns, Piedmont or Chicago Triple, or other interpretive questions. There is no need to sign-up ahead of time and the lesson is included in the cost of the dance. Please arrive on time to join the lesson.
Our social dance goes from 8:30pm to 10:30pm, we dance to DJed or live music. Check out our Facebook page for weekly event details including instructors, class topics, DJs, or live bands.
Q: What is blues dance? What does it look like?
A: Blues dance has roots in African American dance from the early 20th century and is danced to blues music. The dance can be expressive in a lot of different ways, is adaptable to your personal style and ability, and can be danced to a broad range of music. Blues dance is generally divided into two broad styles, jukin' (danced at juke joints) and ballroomin' (danced in ballrooms), but within that framework there are a lot of different blues idioms to learn, like slow drag, Piedmont triple, Chicago triple, the mooche, the fishtail, and many others. Here is an example of jukin' blues dance and here is one of ballroomin' blues dance.
Q: Where are you located and what is parking like?
A: The Philadelphia Ethical Society in Center City.
Parking is pretty tight in this neighborhood, we suggest you take public transit or ride shares to the dance or search for street parking.
Q: What should I bring? Do I need to bring a partner?
A: You do not need to bring a partner, during classes you will rotate through partners and during the dance you are encouraged to ask people to dance!
You should, however, bring comfortable shoes to dance in, a water bottle, and to beat the heat a change of clothes and/or a towel if you are prone to getting sweaty. We recommend wearing clothes you are comfortable moving in. Casual attire is perfectly acceptable though sometimes we encourage folks to dress up for live bands or special events like our Halloween dance.
Q: Someone is making me feel uncomfortable, what should I do?
A: If someone is making you uncomfortable on the dance floor, please speak to an organizer right away. Powerhouse Blues strives to be a fully inclusive space, and we have a strict no-harassment policy. We have dedicated Safer Spaces coordinators who are always available to help. Refer to our Safer Spaces page for a look at our Safe Spaces Policy and for ways to get in touch with our Safe Spaces Coordinator.
If you would like to report a concern to our safer spaces team, you are welcome to submit an anonymous report via our online form.