Thursday, November 15, 2012

Roda time!

In the past weeks there have been many things to celebrate and in the zouk community we love to party -especially we love birthdays! One reason for that is because we get a special birthday dance, roda (Portuguese for 'circle'). In this case it's not quite like the salsa rueda (also Spanish for 'circle') you may first think, where there is an even amount of guys and girls in a circle dancing a set of various moves which one person shouts out. On birthdays we do a roda where people gather in a circle around the person who is celebrating. So if it's a girl that's celebrating then the guys or the leaders circle around the girl; and vice versa. The objective is for the birthday girl or guy to have the most fun while the others in the circle try to "steal" that girl/guy one after another for one song.

This is a known tradition in other latin dance communities as well but it seems to be particularly strong in zouk! I've taken part in many zouk rodas around the world and in Brazil, especially in the big parties like they have for example in São Paulo it gets quite crazy when there are six or even more rodas going on at once - there people make sure they show up to the parties on their birthdays! Everybody dreams about having their birthday during a congress just for the roda, to get surrounded by all the amazing dancers from around the world!

I wanted to take this chance to post some videos of the rodas we've had in the past month here in Helsinki!

Here is one for my birthday. We took over the main floor of the weekly salsa party, "Salsa at the Cellar", at the Helsinki Salsa Academy. So in a sense it was also a little zouk demo too :) The salsa people in the audience (especially the girls, as you can imagine) were quite amazed and delighted to say the least - and I was quite the happy girl too!