Latin

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Cha cha

Cha cha is the name of an American Latin Dance with Cuban origins. This rhythm was developed from the danzon, by a syncopation of the forth beat. The name is devired from the rhythm of the guiro, and the shuffling of the dancers feet. It is said to be first introduced  in 1953, by the famous cuban violinist and composer Enrique Jorrin. 

 

Cha cha is one of the five dances of the "Latin American" program of international ballroom competitions.

Rumba

Rumba is a family of percussive rhythms, song and dance that originated in Cuba as a combination of the musical traditions of Africans brought to Cuba as slaves and Spanish colonizers. The name derives from the Cuban Spanish word 'rumbo' witch means party. Rhythmically, Afro-Cuban folkloric rumba is based on the five-stroke pattern called clave.  Ballroom rumba, or rhumba, is basically son and not based on the authentic folkloric rumba.

 

Rumba finally, is also one of the authentic five dances of the ''Latin American'' program of international ballroom competitions. .

Samba

Samba is a Brazilian dance and a musical genre originating in African roots.  It is recognized around the world as a symbol of Brazil and the Brazilian roots.

 

Samba, is also one authentic five dances of the ''Latin American'' program of international ballroom competitions.

Paso Doble

Paso Doble (literal meaning in Spanish: double-step) is a typical Spanish march-like musical style as well as the corresponding dance style danced by a couple. It is the type of music typically played in bullfights during the bullfighters' entrance to the ring (paseo) or during the passes (faena) just before the kill. It corresponds to the Paso Doble dance. Paso Doble, like Samba, is progressive international style latin dance. A significant number of Paso Doble songs are variants of Espana Cani.

 

Finally, Paso is also another member of the official five latin dances to be danced in the international ballroom competitions. 

Jive

Jive is a form of dance originated around 1940 in the United States. It is a patchwork of many different kind of dances, combining different teckniques and styles, such as Lindy Hop, Jitterbug, Rock and Roll and East Coast  and West Coast Swing.   Jive was firstly developed by the Afro-Americans.

 

It is finally, the fifth dance that completes the five dances program in Ballroom dance competitions around the world.

Salsa

Salsa is a syncretic dance  form with origins from Cuba, as the original meeting point of European and African cultures. Its movements originate Cuban Son, with strong influences from Mambo, Guaguanco and other Afro-Cuban music genres. Salsa is normally a partner dance, although there are recognized solo forms, line dancing and Salsa Rueda de Casino, where groups of couples exchange partners in a circle.

 

Salsa is extremely popular in Latin America, but also nowadays in  the United States, Spain, Japan, Portugal, France, Italy, Germany, Israel and Eastern Europe, as well as the rest of the world.

Merengue

Merengue is a style of Latin American music and dance with a two step beat action. Partners hold each other in a closed position.  Partners bend their knees slightly left and right, thus making the hips move left and right. The hips of the leader and follower move in the same direction throughout the song. Partners bend their knees slightly left and right, thus making the hips move left and right. The hips of the leader and follower move in the same direction throughout the song.

 

Partners may walk sideways or circle each other, in small steps. They can switch to an open position nd do separate turns without letting go each other's hands or momentarily releasing one hand. Although the tempo of the music may be frantic, the upper body is kept majestic and turns are slow, typically four beats/steps per complete turn. 

Bachata

Bachata  is a style of dance that accompanies the music of the same name.  It has its origins in the Dominican Republic,  but is danced widely in Latin America, Europe and United States with substantial Hispanic population. The dance is a four-step beat  achieved with a walking Cuban hip motion and a unique "pop".  The dance is performed both in open position, but more commonly in a closed position, always depending in the parteners mood.  

 

As in Merengue, dips are not original to the dance and turns are done infrequently. The style developed in Europe and US (Traditional, Modern, Bachatango) is a basic dance sequence of a full 8 count in a side-to-side motion.   Bachata music has a slight accent in rhythm at every fourth count, indicating when the “pop” should happen. The “pop” is done in the opposite direction of the last step, while the next step is taken on the same direction of the pop. The dance direction interchanges at every 4th count.

Kizomba

Kizomba is a genre of dance and a musical genre originating in Angola in late 1970s. Kizomba means "party" in Kimbundu, an Angolan language. Kizomba is known for having a slow, insistent, somewhat harsh yet sensuous rhythm as the result of electronic percussion. It is danced accompanied by a partner, very smoothly, slowly and sensuously, and with neither tightness nor rigidity. There are frequent simultaneous hip rotations coordinated between dance partners, particularly in the quieter refrains of the music.

Kizomba is growing in popularity a lot lately, so give it a try, you'll be amazed !

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Danzza Dance Studio, 74 25th Martiou street, Petroupolis, Athens, Greece

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