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What is Kizomba?

The word ‘kizomba’, meaning party, describes both a style of music and a style of dance originating from Angola in the 1980s. As the music grew in popularity, dancers begun to adapt traditional semba steps to suit the slower kizomba beats.

Kizomba is now danced world-wide, growing in popularity thanks to its presence at salsa congresses and Afro-latin dance events.

In Angola, kizomba is traditionally danced with family: brothers with sisters; mothers with sons. It is a partner dance, characterised by close connection and smooth movements:

 

A brother and sister dancing kizomba in Angola in the 1980s. Photo credit to Tania Mendonca.
     A brother and sister dancing kizomba in Angola in the 1980s. Photo credit to Tania Mendonca.

 

Connection is at the heart of kizomba: with the music and between dance partners. It is a journey as much as a dance and each journey is unique.

It’s not a dance that requires particularly complex steps or tricks to be danced well, as it’s about interpreting the song together (musicality) as opposed to performing for others. For that reason, it’s a suitable activity for anyone, irrespective of age, size or agility. That’s not to say that, if both partners are comfortable, dips and tricks can’t be added,  it is not, however, an integral part of the dance, even for advanced dancers.

 

 

 

This is Kizomba aims to raise awareness of, and positively promote, kizomba. If you would like to share what kizomba means to you we’d love to hear from you. You can either write to us or chat to us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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