Did you know that Colombian tourism has grown more than 300% since 2006? Are you looking to take a trip to Colombia and want to know some of the popular Colombian dances, or maybe just want to impress your friends?
In this article, you’ll learn all about some of the most popular dances to be found in Colombia. Read on to discover these dances that you’ll be happy you learned to keep up with your family and friends.
Dancing has been the main part of Colombian culture for centuries. You can find bambuco in the Andean region and less likely at a club or bar. It has an influence on many different dance styles of today. Porro is more formal and is similar to a military march. Salsa and merengue are extremely popular even though they’re not native to Colombia.
Mapale you can find out in Cartagena. You can see colorful costumes, drummers, and dancers dancing in the streets. It represents the movement of the Mapale fish when it comes out of water. Read more below to learn even more about different popular styles of dancing in Colombia.
The most popular dance style you can find in Colombia is Cumbia. It’s considered a courtship dance, and was originally performed using only claves and drums. Eventually, percussion and flutes were included. You can find cambia of today mixed with hip-hop, electronic music, and dancehall reggae.
Cumbia dance is an extremely popular dance found in Colombia. This is a folkloric style that dates back to the colonial period in the Caribbean. The music uses flues, drums, and percussion instruments.
In cumbia dancing, women wear long and colorful skirts and circle around men in their traditional outfits. Men wear a regional sombrero and white clothes.
When you’re looking for different Colombian dances, don’t miss out on learning bambuco. This style of dance has inspired many genre of dances in the country. It’s less popular today but it’s important to learn for the cultural history of it.
It’s similar to a European waltz or polka. It’s a couple’s dance with only a quick moment of contact between the dancers.
While salsa is often associated with Puerto or Cuba, Colombians love the salsa as well. Colombians take pride in learning this dance and it’ll be hard to find a Colombian who doesn’t. You can also enjoy the beautiful salsa dancer outfits they wear while performing salsa. There are different forms of salsa dancing that changes the timing, body movement, and the way partners are holding each other.
The basic movement involves 3 steps in each 4 beat measure. When you make a step, it can be a kick or tap. Your upper body remains steady during the dance. Certain salsa dances have a good amount of hip movement.
While Merengue is enjoyed today throughout Latin America, it has roots in the Dominican Republic. You can enjoy percussions, the guira, and stringed instruments in their music. It’s very similar to salsa. Partners will hold each other in a closed position.
One person holds the other dancer’s waist with their right hand, and their left hand at the other person’s eye level. You bend your knees slightly to the left and right which in turn makes your hips move as well.
One person will hold the other who wraps their right hand around their waist, and their left hand at their eye level. You can switch to an open position and do separate turns without letting go. You have the option to walk sideways or circle each other.
5. Salsa Choke
The salsa choke is a newer style of music that has a history in Tumaco. It mixes traditional salsa with reggaeton and Afro-based rhythms. Choke means bump in Spanish. It combines traditional salsa moves with the bump and grind style of dancing. It’s also considered easier to follow than traditional salsa.
Some traditional salsa dancers don’t consider salsa choke a form of salsa, so there’s disagreement over what it’s considered. In addition to learning Colombian dance, why not try out some vegan BBQ along with some sweet dance videos?
Champeta is a newer dance that’s one of the most popular music genres. You can find it throughout clubs and bars throughout the country. It has a drumbeat that’s easy to dance to. It’s not slow like some dance styles, so be ready for a fast-paced dance to keep up with. It’s also a great workout.
Bullerengue is a Colombian style of dance that has roots in its African heritage. Traditionally, only women dressed in white would perform this dance since it’s about female fertility. The rhythm of bullerengue includes dancers and drums. The dancers often clap along with the rhythm and beats.
Porro comes from the region of Sucre. It’s very similar to military marching music and big bands. It’s a much faster dance than cumbia. You can find it at the Festival del Porro in San Pelayo, and the Festival del Porro in Medellin.
Learning About the Different Colombian Dances
While there are so many different forms of Colombian dances to learn from a military march to a slow dance, this list should give you an idea of which dance is right for you. Would you like to learn more about the culture and history of other places in Latin America and dance? Check out our other articles today.