TYPES OF DANCES
Monday's: 7pm (beginner 101) & 7:45pm (fast beginner 102)
Tuesday's: 7pm (slow intermediate 201) & 7:45pm (intermediate 202)
Saturday's: 11am (intermediate level) & 12:30pm (beginner 101)
The name "Salsa" Means (mixture or combination). Popularized in the
New York city nite clubs during the mid-1970s. It evolved from earlier
Cuban dance forms such as Son, Son Montuno, Cha cha cha and Mambo which were popular in the Caribbean, Latin America and the Latino communities in New York since the 1940s. Salsa, like most dance genres has gone through a lot of variation through the years and has incorporated elements of Afro-Cuban and Afro-Caribbean dances such as Guaguanco and Pachanga. Different countries of the Caribbean and Latin America have distinct salsa styles of their own, such as Cuban, Colombian, Puerto Rican, Miami, L.A. and New York styles.
Unlike the Mambo which is accented (on2), the second beat.
Salsa is accented (on1), the first beat. Salsa is danced throughout the
world in all kinds of venues and events. It is one of the largest and
most popular Latin dances in the world and to this date continues
to grow and evolve.
Thursday's: 7:45pm (fast beginner 102)
In the late 1940s, Cuban born musician Perez Prado came up with the dance
for the mambo music and became the first person to market his music as
"mambo", meaning "conversation with the gods" in the Kongo language,
spoken by Central Africans. After Havana, Prado moved his music to Mexico,
where his music and the dance was adopted. The original mambo dance was
characterized by freedom (very little partnering) and complicated foot-steps.
The Mambo dance that was invented by Perez Prado and was popular in the
1940s and 50s in Cuba, Mexico City, and New York City is completely different
from the modern dance that New Yorkers now call 'Mambo'
and which is also known as Salsa "on 2".
The original mambo dance contains no basic steps at all.
Cuban dancers would describe mambo as "feeling the music" in which
sound and movement were merged through the body.
Cha Cha Cha
Saturday's: 11:45pm (Intermediate 201)
The Cha-cha-cha, or simply Cha-cha, is the name of a dance of Cuban origin.
It is danced to the music of the same name introduced by Cuban composer
and violinist Enrique Jorrín in the early 1950s. This rhythm was developed
from the beginning danzón-mambo. The name is onomatopoeic, derived
from the shuffling of the dancers' feet. Like the Mambo, Cha-Cha-Cha is also accented on the second beat,"On2" but danced to a slower tempo with a syncopated triple step, or Cha-cha-cha step.
Cha-cha-cha is danced to authentic Cuban music, although in international
ballroom competitions it is often danced to Latin Pop, Latin Rock or R&B.
The music for the international ballroom Cha-cha-cha is energetic and with
a steady beat. The Cuban Cha-cha-cha is more sensual and may involve
Thursday's: 7pm (fast beginner level 102) 6 week series class
Wednesday's: 8:30pm (beginner level 101- Drop in class $10)
The authentic Bachata dance is the original way of dancing Bachata,
originating from the Dominican Republic where the music also was born.
The original, slow style in the '60s was danced only closed, like the bolero,
often in a close embrace. The Bachata basic steps moving within a small square (side, side, forward and side, side, back) are inspired from the bolero steps but is an evolved version of those including a tap and also syncopation (steps in between the beats) depending on the dynamics of the music being played. The hand placement will vary with the dancers position which can be very close to semi close to open.
The authentic dance is today danced in the Caribbean and all over the world, nowadays also faster in accordance to faster music, adding more footwork, simple turns and rhythmic free style moves and with alternate between close (romantic) and open position (more playful adding footwork, simple turns, rhythmic torso etc.). This dance is danced with soft hip movements and a tap or syncopation (1, 2, 3, tap/syncopation). It can be danced with or without bounce also (moving the body up on the beats and down again in between the beats by springs the legs a little). Authentic Bachata was created by the Dominican social dancers over decades (from around the beginning of the 1960s) for social dancing and is still evolving to this day.
see our schedule for upcoming workshops (click here)
Cumbia ['kumbja] is a dance-oriented music genre popular throughout Latin America. Cumbia originated in Colombia's Caribbean coastal region from the musicaland cultural fusion of Native Colombians, slaves brought from Africa, and the Spanish during colonial times in the old country of Pocabuy, which is located in Colombia's Momposina Depression and in the ancient palenques of the Congo nation.
Cumbia began as a courtship dance practiced among the African population, which was later mixed with Amerindian steps and European and African instruments and musical characteristics. Cumbia is very popular in the Andean region and the Southern Cone, and is for example more popular than the salsa in many parts of these regions.
Argentine tango is danced in an embrace that can vary from very open,
in which the leader and follower connect at arms length, to very closed,
in which the connection is chest-to-chest, or anywhere in between. Tango dance
is essentially walking with a partner and the music. Dancing appropriately to the emotion and speed of a tango is extremely important to dancing tango. A good dancer is one who transmits a feeling of the music to the partner, leading them effectively throughout the dance. Also, dancers generally keep their feet close to the floor as they walk, the ankles and knees brushing as one leg passes the other.
Argentine tango dancing relies heavily on improvisation; although certain patterns of movement have been codified by instructors over the years as a device to instruct dancers, there is no "basic step." One of the few constants across all Argentine tango dance styles is that the follower will usually be led to
alternate feet. Another is that the follower rarely has his or her weight on
both feet at the same time. In many modern variations of Argentine Tango,
particularly in Europe, teachers of Tango may establish a "basic step" in
order to help students to learn and pick up the "feel" of the dance.
Swing Dance & Lindy Hop
West Coast Swing was developed in the 1940s, as a stylistic variation on the Los Angeles style of the Lindy Hop. It is a slotted dance and is done to a wide variety of music including: blues, rock and roll, country western, pop, hip hop, smooth, cool jazz, R& B, and funk music. It is popular throughout the United States and Canada.
Lindy Hop evolved in the early 1930s. It is a dance of African American origin characterized by a high degree of physical vigor. It is characterized by an 8-count circular basic or "swing out" and has an emphasis on improvisation and the ability to easily adapt to include other steps in 8-count and 6-count rhythms.
East Coast Swing is a simpler 6-count variation that spawned from the six-count variations of the Lindy Hop. It evolved with swing-band music of the 1940s. It is also known as Six-count Swing, Triple-Step Swing, or Single-Time Swing. East Coast Swing has very simple structure and footwork along with basic moves and styling. It is popular for its simple nature and is often danced to slow, medium, or fast tempo jazz, blues, or rock and roll.