Are you bananas for Samba? Carmen Miranda was. Her business is bananas. She had hot moves in her Chicca Chicca Boom Chick Samba in “That Night in Rio.” Carmen Miranda influenced Latin dance trends through her movies and performances, making her mark on Latin dance as we know it today.
Who was Carmen Miranda?
Carmen Miranda was a Brazilian singer of Portuguese descent. Her first job was as a hatter, but her voice led her to singing native Brazilian songs on the radio and in theater. The “Brazilian Bombshell” was performing in the musical “Banana de Terra” in her signature Brazilian “Biana” look when she was asked to come to New York to perform in the musical “The Streets of Paris.” This launched her career in American theater and films. Carmen became highest paid female entertainer in the US during the 1940’s. She was the first ambassador of Latin culture to the United States.
Samba promoted by Carmen Miranda
Carmen Miranda is credited with launching the Samba craze in America in the 1940’s. Samba had come to America in the 1920’s musical “Street Carnival.” Films featuring Carmen Miranda like “Down Argentine Way” and “That night in Rio” pushed Samba into the limelight. She even recorded “The Wedding Samba” with the Andrew sisters during WWII.
Carmen teaches rumba
Samba was not the only Latin dance Carmen did. In the movie “A Date with Judy” Carmen taught the Rumba to Wallace Berry so he can have an anniversary dance with his wife. With a one, two, three hip, he was ready to sway the night away.
About Chicca Chicca Boom Chick
Exploding onto the big screen with Chicca Chicca Boom Chick, Carmen opened the film “That Night in Rio.” This was an over-the-top war time Fox musical featuring big cast, elaborate costumes, and exotic musical numbers. The opening number Chicca Chicca Boom Chick is the inspiration for my Carmen Miranda Chicca Chicca Boom Chick Samba Line Dance How To.
Chicca Chicca Boom Chick Samba Line Dance How To
Basic forward and back
4 measures hand on alternating elbows counts 1a2, 3a4,5a6,7a8.
- Step forward with your left foot (count 1).
- Move your right foot to your left foot (a).
- Left foot in place, weight shifts to it (count 2)
- Step backward with your right foot (count 3)
- Move your left foot to your right foot (a)
- Right foot in place, weight shifts to it (count 4)
- Repeat for counts 5a6,7a8.
- To simplify simply step tap for the counts 1,2,3,4.
Samba solo spot volta
Roll arms over head to left 1a,2a,3a,4 and right 5a,6a,7a,8;
- Start with the left foot, and on count “1” step forward, crossing heel in front of right foot, toes turned out, and turn left face.
- On the “a” step right foot side and back, continuing the turn.
- On “2” cross the left in front again, but it is the heel that moves; the lead toes stay on one spot. Continue: side cross (steps 2,3) for the counts a,3a,4.
- Repeat with the right foot.
- If the rotation is difficult, it can be done with no rotation up to 360 degrees. With 180 degree turn it can face the back and return to front.
Boto Fogos forward
With arm circle in and out, count 1a2, 3a4,5a6,7a8.
- Left foot forward (1).
- Right foot side turning LF 1/8, take partial weight, and push back toward the left foot count (a).
- Recover weight on the left foot count (2).
- Right foot forward (3).
- Left foot side turning LF 1/8, take partial weight, and push back toward the right foot count (a).
- Recover weight on the right foot count (2).
- Repeat for counts 5a6,7a8.
- To simplify, step forward on count 1, tap side for step 2, repeat for counts 3,4,5,6,7,8.
Three step spin to left
Bring arms in to spin and out to stop.
- Side left foot commence to turn left.
- Close right foot to left foot having turned ½ turn to left.
- Step side left foot completing ½ turn to left and end facing original alignment completing 360-degree rotation to the left.
- To simplify, dance a merengue or Cambio side together step for counts 1, 2.
Shimmy shoulders forward and back with arms out.
- Previous figure ends Left foot side count 2.
- Lift and drop right hip for counts 3, 4.
Samba cruzado walk
Turning ¼ to right take three walks forward rolling arms in front ending with a left foot tap.
- Right foot forward from a lifted left heal, count 1.
- Left foot forward from a lifted right heal, count 2.
- Right foot forward from a lifted left heal, count 3.
- Left closes to right foot with a tap, count 4.
Repeat from top
Until song,”Chicka, chicka, boom, boom” ends.
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