Viennese Waltz


The Landler or Ländler is a Austrian dance, which has no certain birthdate but evolved as a type of Folk dance known under different names, until it was finally called the 'Landl ob der Enns' which was shortened to Ländler or Ländl sometime around 1690 and gained popularity around 1720. The word Ländler comes from the word Ländel, signifying upper Austria (Oberösterreich) and the adjoining Styria (Steiermark). People who moved to Vienna from these regions brought with them the Landler and developed faster dancing of the Landler-steps, due to the new smoother dance floors which we know nowadays under the title of "Viennes Waltz".

The Viennese waltz is from the country side of Austria and Germany, it is considered the "classic waltz" and was originally a smooth Galop done to fast 3/4 time waltz music. The Viennese waltz is sometimes referred to the "Valse a deux temps," which means "two step Waltz" but actually has three steps, The deux temps or "Two Steps" was a step that equaled a triple and the second equaled a triple Step (aka triple step-triple step). It should not be confused with the Galop-Waltz , the rhythms are said to be different.


Waltz literally means "to turn forward from one place or to advance by turning." Most round dances come from this "Turning" or waltzing around the floor. Vincente Martin's Opera ">Una Cosa Rara" (a rare thing) which was produced in Vienna in 1776, however had its first public performance at the Vienna Burgtheater on 17th November 1786 which is regarded as the original model (contested). This waltz was mainly a smooth, fast paced, turning dance. This speed apparently was the response to smooth wooden floors in the newer ballrooms of Vienna and better shoes for dancing (relegation of Hobnailed shoes. )

The dance today is different in the states than abroad. The American version has many more steps than our friends overseas. The basic international steps are:

'Austrian Linkswalzer' (The Reverse turn - Counter Clockwise - six counts) and the:

'Austrian Rechtswalzer' (The Natural turn - Clockwise - six counts). along with Change Steps, Contrachecks, Fleckerls, Hesitations, Hovers and Passing Changes. There are a total of six steps for one rotation. The steps are the same for leader and follower but the leader and follower are opposite counts (leader doing a 1,2,3, follower doing a 4,5,6, and when the leader does a 4,5,6, the follower does a 1,2,3.)


Kids Note: Disneyland (CA.,) the "Haunted Mansion" had animated Ghosts that dance the Viennese Waltz in the ballroom scene".


Birth Place             Vienna

Creation Date                   1786

Creator                   None

Dance Type            Waltz/ Ballroom