Salsa Dancing in Cuba
Where are the best places to dance the night away in Cuba?
Whether you want to dance salsa or just let your hair down and have a good old bop...
There are some great bars in Cuba, with fantastic live music and great atmosphere.
Feel the rhythm... get up and DANCE!
What is Cuban Salsa Dancing ?
Cuban salsa (both the dancing & music) first came out of Cuba in the 1970's. In Cuban salsa partners travel around each other and constantly keep contact with each other, (both with the hands and eye-contact). Hip movement is more pronounced (and sexy) in Cuban Salsa, and the torso & body isolation is more noticeable.
What makes Cuban Salsa different to other styles of salsa?
To me, Cuban Salsa feels like the partners are much more connected with each other. It's not about being watched and showing your style to other people, it's about showing your style to your PARTNER! Moving around them, touching them, smiling, laughing and enjoying the fun. Cuban Salsa doesn't have many fast spins, or individual shines & footwork like New York style, ). The footwork in Cuban Salsa is more grounded, and actually quite simple, (the complexity is more in the arm work).
Having learnt both styles, I now much prefer to dance Cuban Salsa to any other style, (but then being married to a Cuban, I would say that, wouldn't I!)
Is Everyone Dancing Salsa in Cuba?
Almost... There IS music EVERYWHERE, from all windows and open doors. From houses, bars, cars (and even some Bicycle-taxis are fitted with a sound system). And yes, everyone moves and dances to the daily rhythm of life in Cuba. Whenever there is a party (and there are lots of them), people are dancing.
But don't assume that every Cuban can dance salsa - they have to learn too!
And don't assume that every bar or live band will play salsa. The fashoin with the young Cubans is Reggaeton (see below).
So before you plan your evening out, check what type of music will be playing?
Casino Rueda Dancing in Cuba
(Rueda de Casino, Salsa Rueda)
Casino Rueda (meaning salsa wheel) is a group dance where a number of couples dance together in a circle.
It is often fast and lots of fun both the dance and to watch! Fantastic to watch a really good group dancing together.
A caller (usually one of the male dancers) will call out moves, which every couple in the circle should follow simultaneously. (Think of it as a complex 'hokey-kokey!)
Rueda is very popular in Cuba but you may need to know a few moves (and their names) to join in. Most of the English 'calls' that I know are similar, but some are completely new to me!
Reggaeton Dancing in Cuba
If you go to Casa de la Musica or to any club or bar in Cuba, you will definitely see some Reggaeton!
What is Reggaeton?
Reggaeton is a mix between latin hip-hop and a strong latin beat. It's very catchy and you'll hear it all over Cuba.
The lyrics are hot and sexy, with heavy language (that's not very subtle, and plays on a lot of Cuban Slang).
Dancing Reggaeton is hot & sexy too! What can I say? Throw your inhibbitions to the wall, get in there and enjoy the latin beat.
My favourite is Gente de Zona, which we were lucky to see playing live in Viñales last year.