When the dance premiered in 1914, it quickly caught the eye of the husband and wife duo Vernon and Irene Castle, who lent the dance its signature grace and style. The origin of the name of the dance is unclear, although one theory is that it took its name from its popularizer, the vaudeville actor Harry Fox. Two sources, Vernon Castle and dance teacher Betty Lee, credit African American dancers as the source of the foxtrot. Castle saw the dance, which he claims had been danced by African-American dancers, to his personal knowledge, for fifteen years, at a certain exclusive club. The Castles were intrigued by the rhythm, and were asked why they didn't create a slow dance to go with it. The Castles introduced what they then called the "Bunny Hug" in a magazine article. Shortly after, they went abroad and, in mid-ocean, sent a wireless to the magazine to change the name of the dance from "Bunny Hug" to the "Foxtrot." It was then standardized by Arthur Murray, in whose version it began to imitate the positions of Tango.
Check out this awesome performance by one of our students!