Course description

This class introduces Salsa, Bachata, Merengue, Cha Cha Cha, Son and Comparsa. Salsa derives from the Cuban rhythm of Son. As a music and dance form, it has acquired regional variations and absorbed influences from different parts of Latin America and other continents. Bachata and Merengue are quintessential dances of the Dominican Republic. Comparsa is a form of carnival line dance. Cha Cha Cha originates in Cuba, finds expression in Rock n’ Roll and western pop music, and is traditionally danced “contratiempo.” In this course, we learn the basics of all of these dances. Instruction emphasizes the development of foundations in musical timing, rhythm, body movement, lead-follow connection and space use. Class begins with a stretch and body movement warm-up. We then teach dance step sequences across the floor, in rotating lines, as freestyle and in partner format. The skills learned in each dance are interrelated - as you improve in one you develop a sensibility for the others. By the end of this course you will be able to take Latin dance to a higher level and learn other partnered dances. No partner is necessary to register. Couple sign-up is encouraged. Partners rotate. This class is gender-free: each student is free to learn the lead or follow role.

Summer 2024: Ithaca campus