Bolero-A Popular Social and Wedding Dance
The dance of love. That is just one of the names of the bolero, a slow and passionate Latin dance. This is a romantic Latin dance danced to ballads and love songs.
The earliest Bolero was from Spain in 1780, and was in triple meter using castanets and guitars. It had a life of its own in the ballet. The American bolero of today originated out of love songs from Cuba and Mexico. The Latin bolero dance music originated in Cuba in 1883 with the music of Jose Pepe Sanchez. This bolero music had many versions, including the Bolero-son, the Bolero-mambo, and the Bolero-cha.
The bolero was first introduced to America by the French composer Luis Ravel with his symphonic piece, “Bolero” in the 1920’s. Cuban bolero was embraced in Europe and re-named the Rumba in the 1930’s. In America the Bolero was an adaptation of the beguine (Artie Shaw’s rendition of, “Begin the Beguine” 1938) and the Spanish Fandango, with the objectionable parts removed. Bolero continued its popularity in Mexico in the 1940’s. A group called Trio Las Panchos comprised of two Mexicans and one Cuban popularized Bolero south of the border. Bolero music was not limited to the Spanish stations. Other Latin singers like Celia Cruz also sang these simple and romantic Boleros. The bolero music re-gained popularity in the 1990’s when Luis Miguel recorded classic boleros in his album Romance.
Hollywood and popular recording artists were influenced by these romantic ballads. Great Hollywood Bolero songs include the theme song from “Titanic.” Popular singers who have sang bolero rhythms and their songs are:
Frank Sinatra From Here to Eternity
Bette Midler Do You Wanna Dance
Madonna Live to Tell
Celine Dion My Heart Will Go On
Diana Krall The Look of Love
Andrea Bocelli Besame Mucho
Bolero music has crossed all borders.
The Bolero is a slow Latin dance danced to ballads in 4/4 time music at a rate of 96-104 beats per minute. The music is usually comprised of guitars and simple percussion like the conga and the bongos, it lyrics are usually romantic poetry of love and romance. The bolero is danced with a basic rhythm of Slow-ly, quick, quick. The pattern is lateral with forward and back rocks. It is danced with both Cuban motion and rise and fall like waltz.
- The dance of love
- a slow and passionate Latin dance
- danced to ballads
- 4/4 time music
- 96-104 beats per minute.
- basic rhythm of Slow-ly, quick, quick
- Cuban motion and rise and fall like waltz.
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