THE HISTORY OF VOGUE | By JAMAL MILAN

 
The dance VOGUE was invented in the 1970's by a man named Paris Dupree. One day as he was listening to music while flipping through a Vogue magazine, he noticed the different poses that the models were doing and took them and decided to imitate those poses to music. Sometimes  holding different poses to the music. He began doing this new dance at the clubs and at the balls and that is how Vogue was introduced into the ballroom scene. By the end of the decade and into the next decade, the art form had evolved and the Posing, Hand Performance, Floor Performance, Precision of movement or angles made with your arms, Spinning and Dips were added. One of the key components of the art-form was to always perform in sync with the beat and/or the timing of the music being played.
 
Originally the category was called Pop, Dip and Spin because after all that is what you were actually doing while vogueing initially. The objective was to Pop your arms to the music, fall into Dips to complete your vogue moves and use Spins to enhance them. As the trend began to spread, different people began to create their own interpretation of Vogue, that is why we say that Vogueing is ultimately your own style however, there are basic moves to the category such as; sliding on your back on the floor for example.  
 
As newcomers came to the ballroom scene in the mid 1980's and as they began to compete in the Vogue category, they brought different elements to it such as stretching your arms, stretching your arms and holding that pose, moving your arms backwards and doing splits etc... By the end of this decade some ball throwers and competitors thought that by having stretch it was a disadvantage to other competitors so certain ball throwers began to call the category “Performance” as a way to separate the two categories by name. The people who did not have stretch would walk Pop, Dip and Spin and those who could really stretch would walk Performance. 
 
Keep in mind that as a ball thrower you had the power to call a category whatever you wanted to entice people to walk it. 
 
The name Oldway originated from the term "Old school". Back in the day you had folks who where known for waking "Performance or Pop Dip and Spin" as that was the 2 names the category was called originally. Then you had the younger generation emerge in 1987/1988 such as myself and others who were vogueing as well as the older generation at the time considered me as well as the new bunch of kids who were in the scene "the new school kids".

How the name began to change from Pop Dip and Spin or Performance to Oldway 
 
One day during the timeframe of 1989-1990 someone threw a ball and on their flier they said they wanted to see the "Old school kids” battle each other and they also wanted to see the “new school kids” battle each other for performance as a way to separate the older folks from battling the newer folks. Then...after that - someone else threw a ball and on their flyer they said they wanted to see Vogue the Oldway, meaning, voguing like the kids used to do back in the day before stretching. Then after that depending on who threw the ball that ball thrower had the power to call category whatever they wanted in order to make their ball and category hott and slowly the name morphed into Oldway which is a term that I have always hated because "Oldway" is not a real word. It's just a term. The category SHOULD always be called Pop Dip and Spin point blank. If you want to be specific in what you want to see as far as the vogue these days you can say Pop Dip and Spin the Oldway. The oldway meaning doing some traditional moves that they once did back in the day. Because the dance called Vogue was new, people did not do too much creatively however, as it grew different people brought different elements to the category and others either imitated those moves as a rule of thumb, a guide or they created new moves such as I did with my one hand walk around vogue move which is now considered a unique power move or a signature move in Pop Dip and Spin today. 
 
I would like to say (again) that Oldway is not a real word and has no definition anywhere in the world so I will personally continue to call it Pop Dip and Spin like it was originally called at the balls back in the day excluding the name "Performance". 
 
The term “New Way” happened the same as oldway. At one point in time, I used to walk Newway because I was considered as a new school voguer however once the folks who had stretch continued to walk the new way I realized that I couldn't compete in that area and I focuised on walking Oldway/PDS. The term New way means "a new way of vogueing opposite of the oldway of vogueing".  That new way of vogue was basically using a lot of stretch while vogueing.  New Way Performance was geared more toward advanced stretching of the joints, without sacraficing Hand Performance, Floor Performance, Precision of Movement and Dips. The Spinning aspect of that style was not a focus on the overall New Way style of vogue.
 
The ERA Color Time Span
 
This was done solely by Derek Prada Ebony. He came up with an idea to separate generations into a color scheme. This is solely his point of view. Keep in mind, that there are no specific rules in Ballroom today therefore people have the liberty to make changes and sometimes those changes grow and expand like wildfire and sometimes those ideas fail or are rejected by the Ballroom Community. 
 
 
FQ Performance
 
FQ Performance back in the day was originally a feminine and softer version of Pop Dip and Spin. It was for the men who got up in Drags and the Fem Queens. Because they were feminine they would do more posing as well as doing seductive moves on the floor (floor performance) such as layout dips where as the men did dips on their necks (neck breaker/Kansai dips) and cartwheels and things of that nature to make their vogue more exciting but basically the moves for the Drags and Fem Queens were the same just different based on the style depending on how you identified yourself.  As with evolution the style of FQ Performance has changed due to the many elements that different people have brought to the category and style of dance. As a FQ performer you should still do all of the same elements as the other types of Vogue such as Hand performance, spinning, holding poses all in sync with the music being played. 
 
 
 
BQ Vogue Fem
 
During the timeframe of 1992-1993 another style emerged called BQ Vogue Fem. This was a style where you had had men who wanted to vogue like or imitate women or fem queens and that is how BQ Vogue Fem emerged. It started out as a kiki category as no one really took it seriously but as new comers began to amaze the ballroom with their styles, antics and techniques it became more popular. 
 
Written by Jamal Milan on 9/9/2017