Difference between Samba and Salsa

Samba vs. Salsa

What is Difference between Samba and Salsa? Dancing has been one of the characteristics that make a particular culture unique. It is very common to find a number of dances that show particularly the culture of a specific country in the way in which the dance is performed, the music that accompanies it and even the costumes that are used. Many of these traditional dances have become favorites of many people who are learning and competing in ballroom contests. Among these dances is samba and salsa.


Difference between Samba and Salsa

Samba is the national dance of Brazil, but its origins go back to traditional dances from Africa and Europe. The name samba comes from the Portuguese word sambar which means to dance with rhythm. It is believed that the samba was developed in the capital of Rio de Janeiro, although it is also seen in different cities of the country. During the late nineteenth century, African slaves who emigrated from Bahia began to incorporate their traditional dances with steps of polka, maxixe and other traditional dances already popular in Brazil, which gave rise to the samba. Nowadays, the samba is much related to the carnival, which is the most popular festival in Brazil.

On the other hand, salsa is a traditional dance originated in the Caribbean and is currently extremely popular throughout the world, particularly in the United States, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. Like the samba, the salsa was born from a mixture of African and European dances. The main difference lies in the way in which both dances are carried out.

One difference is that salsa is a dance that involves couples while samba can be danced in pairs or alone.

Another difference is the way to run. Samba dancers, particularly those who dance during carnival, sometimes dance improvisation ally. On the other hand, salsa has a number of basic steps that must be carried out by the couple throughout the dance to be able to give the characteristics of the dance so that it is noticed that it is salsa.

Finally, a particular type of music is used. The samba has a more open variety of music. Because salsa is more structured than samba, there are certain types of music that can be played and used when dancing salsa. In fact, there are also certain types of music that are considered inappropriate for salsa dancing.

In Summary:

  • Salsa and samba are dances, a product of a mixture of African and European dances.
  • The samba originated in Brazil and can be danced alone or by a group of individuals. The samba originated in the Caribbean and involves dancing between pairs or groups.
  • The samba is very liberal when it comes to the music that is played. Salsa, on the other hand, is very strict with the choice of music.
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