Location: Tucson, Arizona
Just wondered if anyone here does the Bachata. As far as I know no one here does and I have not heard of it in any of the local studios and no classes are offered for this dance.
Is that a Brazillian Samba thing? If so, then they teach it at the studio where I usually take lessons and practice.
I do a fair amount of Bachata. There's usually at least one Bachata set played in the clubs, sometimes more. I even saw it taught once at a studio, but that's the only time I've ever seen anyone actually teach it. The guys I've danced with seem to have little variations, based on where they come from - as in more or less flat-footed, closer-hold or looser-hold, with a little kind of hitch on the 4, more top less bottom and vice-versa, or a forward and backward twisting step that reminds me a little of Montana Two-Step. There seem to be a lot of Latin guys who get here knowing Bachata, but I see the very same guys struggle in Salsa classes. A few guys will do simple turns, but that's rare. I only know a couple of guys who do all the above and will actually make up stuff as we go along.
I flatly refuse to dance Bachata with the guys who think it's a bun-grabbing grind thing (for some reason, always Mexican guys - dunno why.) There seem to be two minds about Bachata amongst the salseros around here. The majority use Bachata breaks for a rest and a drink. The rest dance straight through, but will often change partners just for the Bachata sets. A few guys have told me they have particular partners they like for Bachata.
I actually like the dance as it's simple, and I use it to cool down after dancing Salsa. I've thought from time to time that it should be possible to do a whole lot more with Bachata than I've seen done so far. I'd have to log some floor time to figure all that stuff out, but it's 4/4 and just about anything that works in the other dances should only need a minor adjustment. Maybe I'll mess around with it a little this coming weekend and see what we come up with.
I've seen the club version of this done - it was a little like merenge except there was a hip lift thingy at the end i.e., da da da right lift-hippy-shake da da da left lift-hippy-shake ...etc.. I think someone told me there are variations of the hip thing as well.
Location: Tucson, Arizona
It originated in the Dominican Republic and the description is not like samba. I understand that it's three steps to the left and turn your hip to the right and then vise versa. Something like that.
Location: Germantown, MD
Bachata has american rumba timing. Most of the music sounds cheap (especially the strings) and they all sound the same. Juan Luis Guerra has a few good ones, but he is the exception. The dance is pretty simple and unexciting.
Location: Southeast United states
The Samba thing you may be thinking of is the Bossa Nova, a very slow Samba, it is also a very slow boring movie with Amy Irving in it. Not a dance movie whatsoever.
The best way I have heard Bachata described is in an article describing latin club dances as..."side, together, side, grind".
So, that "hip-lift thing" at the end is actually supposed to be a bit more involved than a "lift" of the hip. Non-Latin or beginner dancers will tend to do a big lift of their hip after the side-together-side. BUT, that takes away from the rhythmical/tropical feeling of the dance.
As one of the other writers put it, it was born out of the Dominican Republic...now, if you have ever seen a Dominican guy dance Bachata, you'll know EXACTLY what I mean! Phew!
Yep, the Bachata is Dominican ... I was at a Latin club and saw/learned it. A lot of Bachata is played on Latin radio ... but at a recent ballroom dance no one knew how to dance it when the music was played!
Location: San Diego
So, out of curiosity, why was it being played? Did the DJ not know their music? (Sort of like comp DJs who play salsas for American Rhythm Mambo... )
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