TORONTO AFRO-CUBAN LESSONS
Add organic flavour and real soul to your Salsa dancing by incorporating Afro-Cuban movement in your dance, the way they do it in Cuba!
These classes are being offered on an ongoing basis format, which allows you to join at any time.
OUR AFRO-CUBAN CLASSES
Return to the Roots of Salsa - with authentic and inspiring Afro-Cuban movement. Learn fascinating and organic body movement and musicality as the incredible beat patterns touch your soul. Combining these movements with your salsa, will add power to your dancing and set it on fire!
This course covers some of the vast Afro-Cuban vocabulary, such as:
- Yoruba (Orishas) dances: Elegguá, Yemayá, Oyá, Changó, Oggún, Ochosi, Ochun, Obatalá, Babalúu Ayé
- Arará dances: Afrekete, Mase, Jebbioso, Afra
- Congo dances: Palo, Makuta, Yuka
- Afro-Cuban Haitian dances: Gagá
No Partner Needed
The rich variety of music and dance in Cuba has its roots in Cuban history. African slaves brought in to work on the sugar plantations outnumbered Europeans. Although Cuba’s African population was undeniably oppressed, they managed to preserve many rituals and customs, and their rhythms and instrumentation were eventually absorbed into existing mainstream Spanish music culture.
YORUBA / ORISHAS TRADITIONS
A big branch of Afro-Cuban culture is based on the Santeria religion, or Regla de Ocha. Derived from the Ifá religion (Orisha worship) of the Yoruba people from West Africa, in what is now northwestern Nigeria and Benin, Santeria in Cuba presents a series of synchronies with catholicism, where each one of the African deities (Orishas) are also known by the name of a catholic saint. These synchronies were needed in the past to disguise the African rituals and that way be allowed.
The Yoruba branch of Afro-Cuban is also represented by a set of music and dance, of a sacred character, connected to religious cerimonies. Played by a set of sacred drums called the Batá drums, the music is also considered a representation of an Orisha, and is used as a vehicle to invoke the spirits of the different deities. Characterized by complex rhythms played by 3 dual drums, this polyrhythmic structure is a central base of modern Cuban music. The dances are also complex in the sense that the dancer needs to know which steps go with each one of the specific rhythms and chants.