From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Dance hall in its general meaning is a hall for dancing. From the earliest years of the twentieth century until the early 1960s, the dance hall was the popular forerunner of the disco or nightclub. The majority of towns and cities in the West had at least one dance hall, and almost always featured live musicians playing a range of music from strict tempo ballroom dance music to big band, swing and jazz. The early days of rock n' roll were briefly played out in dance halls before nightclubs took over.
One of the most famous dance hall musicians was Glenn Miller.
The term may also refer to one of the following.
- A Caribbean Dance Hall
- Dancehall, a musical style or family of musical styles associated with ska, reggae and rocksteady.
- Dance club, the successor of the dance hall.
- The Dance hall was the area of prison cells adjacent to the electric chair at Sing Sing Prison, where the condemned inmates spent their last day before their execution.