What is Bachata?
Here’s how bachata is danced:
Bachata is a style of Latin dance, originally from the Dominican Republic and it derived from the traditional guitar music Pan-American since the 1960s.
Bachata appeared around 1960 and is part of an important subset of romantic guitar music of the Dominican Republic. This genre has gone through several phases until José Manuel Calderón recorded what are known as the first bachata songs, Borracho de Amor and Que será de mi (Condena) in 1961.
Long before Calderón, bachata was heard in the ill-famed places from the Dominican Republic, considered vulgar and with a rustic musicality. Guitar music like bolero and son were the base of this genre of music. At that time it was not known as bachata music, but more as bolero Campesino. The word bachata normally states an intimate party/unofficial gathering where only guitar music was played.
It was a long time until bachata was accepted and danced, and this happened in 1990 when the Bachata Rosa album was recorded and published by Juan Luis Guerra, a well known and respected meringue singer. The Bachata rhythm is 4/4 with pronounced hip movements and choreographies denoting romance.
Here are some typical costs for bachata dance lessons:
• For group dance lessons expect to pay about $15 per person and $25 per couple per 1-hour class.
• For workshop dance lessons expect to pay about $25 per person and $40 per couple per 2.5 hours class.
• For Bootcamp dance lessons expect to pay about $55 per person and $95 per couple per 4 hours class.
• A private dance lesson costs about $85 per hour class, both for one person or one couple.
Some dance schools may have in their „date night lessons” package and it costs about $95 per couple, including the wine and the assortments.
If you are a student and you buy passes or packages, you can get a discount.
Couples can also get a discount, either as a male/female or female/female couple.
The dance style is very particular and has various influences from other dances, such as Tango, Kizomba, Zouk, and Contemporary Dance.
First, a little theory. They dance in two times of four-steps, while the fourth step is marked by a more pronounced hip movement. We said a more pronounced movement because the dance has a constant hip movement. The basic step is to the sides (4-steps to the right, 4 to the left) and the remaining steps (step 1, step 2, etc.) are divided differently or to other directions, but anyway it follows the same rules.
Bachata is considered the most sensual dance. Why? Because the partners stay very close (normally this is not mandatory, but still it’s a passionate dance) and in the basic position, the girl’s knees hold relatively strong, the boy’s knee. In this way, her feet fit on her partner’s right leg and it will be easier for him to lead her.
Perhaps everything seems natural, spontaneous, but in order to be so, there must be a tension between partners because the girl has to know how to receive the boy’s signals. We are not talking about sexual tension, but the physical one, meaning that they should have a certain body tense. It all consists of communication through various handshakes, small “stitchings”.
As there is no dance without music, bachata, as dance, accompanies the music with the same name. The songs usually have as subject an unfulfilled love or rather an unrequited one, and from the bands that play bachata, Aventura is probably the most popular. But that is another topic.
Should the average working Joe and Jane take this type of class?
If you’re looking for that dance that will turn all the attention on you two at any party, then bachata is the way to go. Money shouldn’t be a problem, considering that you only have to pay as low as $15 per hour, but if that’s too much for you, you could always try to learn it from free online video tutorials.