Salsa dancing is a dance style associated with the salsa style of music now popular worldwide. Salsa music has its origins sometime in the 1950s to 1970s, with the truly distinct salsa style coming out of New York in the 1970s. The music fuses a number of Cuban styles, particularly the son, but also draws from a number of other Latin American musical styles. The culture surrounding salsa also takes cues from the styles of mambo and rumba.
The typical instruments accompanying salsa dance includes the thumping of congas, blaring trumpets, cowbells, timbales, and claves. Salsa dances are commonly held in night clubs, ballrooms, restaurants, and outside, especially if part of an outdoor festival. Salsa dancing is an international dance that can be found in most metropolitan cities in the world. The name “salsa” correctly describes the flavor of this dance: hot! A very energetic Latin dance, danced correctly, there’s a lot of shaking, shimmying, and hip action going on.
Lots of fun, complete with spins, sharp movement, and crisp turns. Salsa dancing is done on eight-beat music, with dancers moving on three beats, pausing for one beat, dancing for three beats, and pausing for one beat. The movement style is left-right-left-pause, then right-left-right-pause. During the pause in most salsa dancing some sort of flourish is utilized, be it a stomp of the foot, casting out the hand or kicking the lower leg. Salsa dancing is mostly a stationary dance, with little movement around the dance floor. Instead, dancers rely on the subtle movement of their legs and upper bodies to convey the energy of the dance.
In addition to the partnered movements of salsa dancing, dancers may integrate solo breaks known as shines into their routines.These are a way for salsa dancers to take a breather from an exhausting routine, or to gather themselves if their rhythm is broken. Shines involve lots of ornate movements and demonstrations of the body, and are intended as a way for a dancer to show off their full talent. While shines are in theory improvisational, there are many standard shines which dancers learn and can fall back on. Today there are many various styles of salsa dancing because of geographical dispersion and cultural syncretism. The most well – known styles are Cali-style (from Colombia), Cuban-style (“Casino”), LA-style, New York-style, and Puerto Rican-style.