The music brings us together or pulls us apart

By Monique Salez

My dad/Pops just returned from his yearly pilgrimage to the south of France where he was born and raised. He visits family and friends but the main event is driving the winding south central foothills of the Pyrenees to attend dances – over 45 in two months. Pops is 74 and adores partner dancing for the human connection, the exercise and creative expression. Pops believes this dance culture will eventually fade away due in part to the surge of disco that moved the young people into city venues where they danced independently.

In Victoria where we have a diversity of partner dance from Swing to Ballroom to Latin it is music that is bringing a new vitality to partner dancing in Victoria. With its roots in Angola, Kizomba, both the dance and music, is a slow, sensual groove with a steady and at times intense rhythm. Sometimes described as African tango for the fusion of footwork and lower leg actions reminiscent of Argentinian tango coupled with hips and torso expressing hyper isolative movements and unapologetic sensual expression, Kizomba is often characterized by onlookers whistling and hooting their encouragement. With over four years in Victoria, Kizomba is surging and Bernard Henin of Salsa Moderna has been one of the local teachers who has been travelling the world to learn this style to add to his latin repetoire. Henin observes that “the music is more appealing and relatable to the younger generation” and believes this is why he is seeing an increasing number of men learning the moves. So those looking ahead to a dance filled New Year’s check out Kizomba classes at latinvictoria.ca or Dec. 28th join the Kizomba Social at The Martin Bachelor Gallery at 7:15 p.m. As for Pops, he won’t be adding Kizomba to his repertoire anytime soon and anyways he has already booked his ticket back to France for New Years to a live band with over 400 dancing guests.

Just Posted

Rebirth of downtown cultural festival coming to Victoria in July

Folktoria aims to pick up where Folkfest left off

Pass a pint: Great Canadian Beer Festival tickets on sale now

Over 200 brews and ciders will be featured at this year’s craft celebration

Art Gallery of Greater Victoria expansion gets $6M boost from province

Project many years in the making, but planned for current Rockland site

B2B season has rare Island line-up of shows in Qualicum Beach

Month-and-a-half of performances kicks off with Baskerville comedy July 3

Captured in time: Cool Aid unveils photos from its 50 years of history

The photos will be on display and for sale at their Downtown Community Centre

VIDEO: Jazz vocalist Susannah Adams continues her Island tour Sunday at Crofton pub

Fresh off a triumphant show at Hermann’s Jazz Club, Adams set to light up Osborne Bay Pub

Gabriola glass blowers Dirk Huysman, Mary Ann Richards launch first solo show

Plan a road trip: Island’s Hive Emporium hosting exhibition through June 24

Victoria’s Raino Dance turns 35 years young

Company has expanded its dance offerings, but its inclusive mission remains the same

5 fun things to do this weekend in Greater Victoria

Car Free YYJ, family fishing, Sooke bluegrass, walk for cancer and a mascot’s birthday

Most Read