What is Bachata?
Bachata is from the Dominican Republic and is known for its fun & sexy style and easy to learn approach. Bachata music can be distinguished by its particluar guitar riff or sound which is prominant in all bachata songs. Today bachata is mixed with other styles such as Regeaton & RnB.
Bachata is a style of dance that accompanies the music of the same name. It has its origins in the Dominican Republic, but is danced widely in Latin America, parts of Europe and areas in the United States with substantial Hispanic populations.
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 or not she is comfortable 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. The “pop” is done in the opposite direction of the last step, while the next step is taken on the same direction of the pop. The dance direction interchanges at every 4th count.
The original Bachata Dance Style
Dominican Style: The original Bachata, the early slow style from around late fifties from where everything started, are from The Dominican Republic. Basic steps moving within a small square dancing in a closed position. This style is danced all over The Caribbean, now also faster in accordance to faster music, adding more footwork, turns and rhythmic free style moves and with alternate between close(romantic) and open position(more playful adding footwork, turns, rhytmic torso etc.). Danced with soft hip movements and a small pop on the 4th beat (1, 2, 3, hip). Can be danced with or without bounce. Although "Dominican-style" is used to describe the way bachata is danced in the Dominican Republic in comparison to "Traditional" or "Modern" bachata styles there are different ways of dancing bachata within the Dominican Republic but all based on the same dance technique - The styles vary a bit and may be influenced by region, a persons age, socio-economic conditions and the music one is listening to at the time. Dominican Bachata is created by the People over many years (from arround late fifties) for Social Dancing and are still evolving - The style is spreading rapidly in the western world today.