A history of harlems savoy ballroom

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It was located between th and st Streets, at Lennox Avenue. The Savoy featured two mirrored flights of marble stairs, leading from street level up to a chandeliered lobby, and to the orange-and-blue room itself, which measured by feet and could hold up to 7, people. The most famous, and one of the most highly publicized, was the battle of Chick Webb vs. The Savoy's doors closed in the late s, and the building was torn down in to make way for a housing project. Street, and there was even a Savoy Ballroom in Bakersfield, California in the late 's. The Savoy was the place to be in Harlem — and Harlem was the place to be in the 20s and 30s. The block long ballroom had two bandstands, colored spotlights and a spring-loaded wooden dance floor. They would be fired for consorting with patrons outside the ballroom, but inside the hostesses would teach people to dance and were dance partners for anyone who purchased a 25 cent dance ticket.

Also, with the rise of bebop and rock and rollbig-band jazz ceased to be America's dominant form of popular music, and the owners of the Savoy found it harder to continue to book new big bands each week.

Some Clubs such as the Roseland Ballroom had a mixed race nights Sundays but originally would put a rope down the middle of the floor, Blacks on one side and whites on the other on their mixed nights. The ground floor of the building housed the entrance to the ballroom at the center of the block signified by the marquee extending out over the sidewalk and various stores.

This usually brought the biggest crowds. When Benny Goodman played the Savoy and did battle with Chick Webb, it was reported that there was approximately 25, people waiting to get into the ballroom Webb won.

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Dance Contest's were also popular at the Savoy Ballroom and the contests were generally held on Wednesdays with prizes going up to third place.

The floor had to be replaced every three years due to frequent use.

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It was known downtown as the "Home of Happy Feet" but uptown, in Harlem, as "the Track" because the floor was long and thin. Herbert White was a bouncer at the Savoy who was made floor manager in the early s.

A history of harlems savoy ballroom
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Savoy Ballroom