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Five Popular Latin Dance Forms

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The rich cultural heritage of Latin America perfectly blends the indigenous elements as well as various elements of the white world. Latin music and dance are no exceptions. Popular Latin Dance forms have been the result of the synthesis of different dance styles. According to the context, Latin dance forms can be divided into two sections: the social dances and the ballroom dances. Some of the popular dance forms of Latin America include Cumbia, Rumba, Jive, Cha Cha, and so on.


Rumba
The word Rumba is derived from the name of a dance band called “Rumboso Orquestra.” Rumba is not only popular in Latin America, but this dance form has been adopted by the famous dancers of the world. This dance form is composed by the African slaves who were brought to Cuba. A percussion of pots, bottles, and spoons is played to accompany the dance. In this dance form, the movement of the body is more important than the movement of the feet. The cross rhythms are emphasized than the tune.


Jive
Jive was initially born in the South East of the U.S. This dance form was composed by the African slaves who were imported to this part of America. The name of this dance was derived from the word “Jev” meaning “to talk disparagingly.” Jive is quite similar to the war dance of the Seminole Indians. The music associated to Jive is known as ragtime. This dance is performed by a couple. Jive is a very energetic dance form. Jive became popular among the whites in the 1900s.


Paso Doble
Paso Doble is a famous Latin dance form that is mainly imported from Spain. Paso Doble owes its origin to the Spanish folk dance. This dance form is based on the bull fight to some extent. The words Paso Doble means “two steps.” This dance form has such a name as it is mainly performed to the march music and the dance steps can be counted as 1, 2. At times, it is also composed to the tune of Spanish Gypsy dance called “Espana Cani.”


Cha Cha
This popular dance form blends various characteristics of Cuban dances like “Montuno” and “Danzon.” In fact, Rumba is danced with extra beats at times. In “Cha Cha,” you can find all these features. The name of this dance could have been derived from “Guaracha,” a Cuban dance or the Spanish “Cha Cha,” which means nursemaid. While performing this dance a typical sound of the feet can be heard because of some particular steps. This is the reason that many people also call it “Cha Cha Cha.” It is danced at nearly 120 beats a minute.


Carimbo
The word Carimbo owes its origin to Africa. Carimbo mainly refers to a large drum made of tree-trunk and deer skin. Carimbo also indicates a popular dance form of Latin America. Carimbo is mainly a folk dance form that has originated from Para in the Brazilian Amazon. This dance form is practiced by the people of the Marajo Island. It is also famous among the inhabitants of the capital of Belem. The vocal music is accompanied by string instruments and percussion. Dancers perform this dance in a circle. At times, the women dancers throw handkerchief on the floor and their partners pick it up only by using their mouth.


These dance forms completes as well as complements Latin music.

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