Try the Cha-Cha

Couples having dancing classYou have probably heard of the Cha-Cha. It has been around for quite some time and is a popular ballroom dance. The Cha-Cha is a Cuban classic.

The Origins

The Cha-Cha is a Cuban dance that dates back to the 1950s. The music to which it is danced has the same name. A composer named Enrique Jorrin introduced the music with a beat similar to the danzon-mambo, but created for dancers who struggled with the rhythms. The dance became known as the Cha-Cha-Cha, A.K.A. Cha-Cha, because dancers began improvising a step that created a “cha-cha-cha” sound. Soon, new compositions for the dance were created and the dance was a hit in Havana. It quickly spread through the 50s into Mexico and more of Latin America, and then to the U.S. and beyond.

The Dance

The Cha-Cha is commonly danced to Cuban music, though it can be danced to a variety of Latin-based tunes. It’s both an energetic and potentially sensual. The dance’s styles can differ, but the basic steps are counted as, “two, three, four and one.”

  • The lead steps to the side with his left foot on the first beat then he rocks back onto his right foot on the second beat.
  • On the third beat the leader replaces weight onto his left foot.
  • Next is the chasse to the side.  There are 2 beats, but 3 steps so there is a syncopation counted four and one. The lead takes a small side step with the right foot on ‘four’, then steps with the left foot bringing the feet together on ‘and’, and then he takes another small step to the right with the right foot on ‘one.’
  • Then, the step continues with a rock step forward with the left foot followed by a chasse to the left.
  • The partner does the same, but mirrored.

Want to learn? Come to Dance Passion Studio and we’ll teach you.