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Paper Topic:

How To Dance Merengue

The Soldier 's Dance

Introduction : A General Overview

Merengue is a fast , martial music , owing its (popular ) origins to a war hero who had a wounded leg and thus could only make small sliding steps It has become popular in the Dominican Republic and Haiti and is the national dance of the former . Its most basic step is to move your left leg to the side and let your other leg follow . There are , however basic positions and rules to follow

Initial Position

Face your partner , raise both left arms at

shoulder level , clasping at the hands . For the man , the right hand should be at your partner 's hips , and for the woman , the right arm should be on your partner 's shoulder

The Basic Movement

There are three rules to remember when dancing the Merengue . First , one must always be keeping in beat . The dance has a 4 /4 rhythm , and the dancer must step at each beat . That means , there must be constant footwork . For every turn or every variation , the foot must always move 1-2 , 1-2 , moving left , sliding from right . Second is , the hips must sway from side to side . This must coincide with the 1-2 footwork To accomplish this , one must be dynamically shifting weights when taking a step and sliding . Since Merengue requires only small steps this is relatively easy . Third is , to keep the upper body level . Do not tilt your upper body from side to side , vertically . Move it from side to side , but only laterally

To coordinate this , first practice alternating bending and stretching the knee with each step . When the knee bends , the hip drops likewise as the knee stretches , the hip rises . Start with the 1-2 step shifting weight while alternately bending and stretching the knee , and consequently , alternately dropping and raising the hips . At all times the upper torso must be level . So although the weights shift , and the hips move from side to side and drop and raise , the balance must be maintained in the upper body torso

Once you have understood and have had some practice with it , you will be ready to dance the Merengue . However , the best way to master the dance is to practice it constantly , studying the various variations and working it out slowly with a partner . It 's actually very easy , and how the variations are formed is up to the dancer

Bibliography

Baker , J (2007 , July 1 . Learn to Dance Merengue [Video ] . Video Posted to HYPERLINK "http /youtube .com /watch ?v on4V1KN_Iuw http /youtube .com /watch ?v on4V1KN_Iuw

Heikkila , L (n .d ) Merengue . Merengue : History of Dance

Retrieved April 5 , 2008 from

http /www .centralhome .com /ballroomcountry /merengue .htm...

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