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Bachata (dance): Wikis


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Bachata is a style of dance that accompanies the music of the same name. It has its origins in the Dominican Republic.

The dance is a four-step beat achieved with a walking Cuban hip motion, and a unique “pop”. The dance is performed both in open position and in closed position depending on the setting and mood of the partners. Similar to Merengue, dips are not original to the dance and turns are done infrequently. The male leads the female with subtle communication using pushing and pulling on the hands to guide the direction in which to move or to hint on upcoming turns. The female may also provide communication using her left hand to indicate whether she is comfortable or not dancing in a closed position.

The style developed in Europe and US (Traditional, Modern, Bachatango) is a basic dance sequence of a full 8 count in a side-to-side motion. The Dominican style basic dance sequence is a full 8 count moving within a square. Counts 1 through 3 and 5 through 7, when taken, generate a natural hip motion. Counts 4 and 8, consists of a “pop” movement. The "pop" depending on a person’s style is executed lifting or tapping a foot or using stylish footwork while popping the hip to the side opposite of the natural Cuban hip motion. Bachata music has a slight accent in rhythm at every fourth count, indicating when the “pop” should happen. Note: The “pop” will always be done in the opposite direction of the last step, while the next step will be taken on the same direction of the pop.


Basic step

The dance direction will interchange at every 4th count.

Bachata Styles

  • Dominican Style Bachata: The original bachata, from The Dominican Republic is the way it is danced in The Caribbean. This style can be danced with or without bounce, typical with lots of footwork and free style moves and with alternate between close and open position. Short turn patterns.
  • Traditional Style Bachata: A style developed in US and Europe based on the earlie Dominican Bachata and the most common style of bachata danced all over the world (2009). The main characteristic of this style is the use of a small hip movement on the 4th count of the beat (1,2,3 and hip) and the close connection with your partner (a very romantic style of dance).
  • Modern Style Bachata: (or Bachata Moderna) Bachata Moderna is based on the concept of the crosses, where on each count you lead to a cross (cross on1, cross on2, cross on3), but on the 4th count you keep the hip movement of the Traditional Style Bachata. Bachata Moderna includes different variations as "Bachatango" and "Urban Bachata". The history of Bachata Moderna is described in this article *More than just bachata
  • Bachata Tango or Bachatango (a sub-style of Modern Style Bachata): The basic steps are the same 8 count as Bachata only that it produces a side to side motion, while occasionally moving back and forth. The “pop” count will be used to add elaborated sensuality and varied Latin dance styles. Although this dance has been used to dance to Bachata, it has evolved to be used to dance to Tango as well. It should be noted that 'Bachatango' is a foreign introduction and is unheard of in the Dominican Republic - Bachata's country of origin.


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