Many samba schools were out rehearsing their samba routines over the weekend, according to a Jan. 21, Associated Press report, in preparation for Brazil’s big Carnival event which begins on Saturday, Feb. 9, and continues for four days.
The samba began as music for Brazil's working class and was popularized in the slums of Rio de Janeiro.
In 1917, the samba, a dance characterized by bouncy steps and flailing arms, became a part of the Rio Carnival.
The samba is lively dance inspired by the lundu, an African dance that resembles the Spanish fandango. The samba, known for its knee and hip movements as well as its rhythmic walking, is a combination of other dances with South American beats.
The costumes worn by dancers are often colorfully embellished bikinis and extravagantly feathered headpieces.
The dance is associated with Brazil's Rio Carnival and its many escolas de samba, or samba schools.
The conga, mesemba and carioca are just a few of the many types of samba, but they are all at the same tempo..
The samba tempo is 50 measures a minute, or 100 beats a minute. Dancing is done with three steps for every two beats of music, which is triple time. Madonna's "La Isla Bonita" contains samba dance music.
Be sure to check out all my examiner columns:
Subscribe to get email updates when new articles are published!