Hope you folks are enjoying the weekend. The cold and snow may be fierce but it won't slow us down!

Friday, there was a fantastic show led by Brandon Wint at Pressed Cafe.  Amongst the talented performers, was my friend Falana from Toronto performing Latin soul/blues/R&B. Her music is so diverse it's hard to place her in any particularly genre/category; other than the one of amazing.  After the showcase, I  joined Azucar at their outing to Rahim's where DJ Alan played a get out of your chair and dance timba set.

Saturday evening the dancing continued at Capital Kizomba's monthly social at Discoteka.  The dancers came out despite the storm, showing yet again support and interest in this beautiful dance from Angola. I know that I'm becoming an addict. Great job Lynnette and Warren for organizing, and to DJ Darnell for keeping us dancing all night! For more Kizomba, come to the Bailando Ottawa Launch Party on March 14!



Also excited to announce more Ottawa dance events for the weekend of March 14/15!

We have the very talented Walter Rivera coming in from Montreal to attend the Bailando Ottawa Launch party and he will be staying to teach two workshops on Sunday afternoon.  Walter recently dazzled us at Rahim's February 9th party with his funky cha-cha-cha performance (check out the videos at the end of the blog post). This is a joint collaboration with Azucar Latin Dance Company, a big thanks to Jeff and Ana for supporting the event!

So what will Walter be teaching? With his decades of experience as a dancer/teacher/choreographer, he could teach us ALOT of different genres, but we've decided to focus on guanguanco and pachanga.

You might be wondering what that is. In my opinion they are both great add-ons for dancers to improve their musicality, body isolations and add ‘sabor’/flavour to your solo salsa/cha-cha-cha dancing.  It's a way of 'shining' without memorizing footwork patterns/shines. 

Guanguanco focuses on body isolations and movements that are distinctly afro-cuban. Guanguanco is a genre of music and dance within afro-cuban rumba. It has specific music that traditionally seems like it has no connection to salsa (see the video of los munequeitos below and wait for my movie in the spring). That said, guanguanco can be beautifully incorporated into your salsa during solo dancing. See Water's videos for a an application of this.

Pachanga was developed from Cuban dancers in NY during the late 1950s.  It is danced on2 and was made famous by Eddie Torres.  Here is a good description and some videos. Note, we are talking about NY style, not Cali =)



1) By email transfer to yung.caroline@gmail.com.  Please send also a separate email with: your full-name, the workshop(s) you are taking, and the password. $20 for one class/$35 for both

2) In person. On Friday, March 13 I'll be at Rahim's and can accept payment via cash or credit-card. 

3) Advance registration is also possible at Azúcar! Latin Dance Company with Jeff or Ana.

Only 20 spots available per class, so register early to confirm your spot! 


Make sure to check out the videos below of Walter performing at the Marseille Salsa Congress and the video of Los Munequitos (a traditional rumba group that has been around for decades).

Walter's performances at at the Marseille Salsa Congress in 2011

Los Muñequitos de Matanzas =)

This is not likely how the guanguanco you dance will play out on the salsa dance floor, but to respect rumba, it's important to show the tradition of where It came from.