The Chacha History
Cha Cha evolved from a version of Mambo called Triple Mambo or “chatch” step. When a slower version of Mambo music was played, it allowed time for triple steps to be inserted between the forward and backward breaks. These triple steps were 3 quick changes of weight preceded by 2 slow steps. By the early 1950’s, this figure had developed into a new dance all its own.
Cha Cha is one of the most popular of the social Latin-American dances. Lively and flirtatious, the Cha Cha is full of passion and energy. The Cha Cha is a vibrant, flamboyant and playful dance. The light and bubbly feel of the Cha Cha gives it a unique sense of fun for dancers throughout the world. The Cha Cha requires small steps and lots of hip motion (Cuban motion), as it is danced in 4/4 time. The fourth beat is split into two, giving it the characteristic 2,3,4 & 1 rhythm. Therefore, five steps are danced to four beats as in the “One, two, cha cha cha” rhythm.
The basic components of the Cha Cha are triple steps and rock steps. Quick, small steps must be maintained throughout the dance. The distinctive movements of the hips result from the constant bending and straightening of the knees. Dancers must synchronize each movement as they dance parallel to one another.
The Cha Cha is a non-progressive, lively, fun dance, which uses a ‘ball flat” foot action and keeps the body over the feet. The legs and hips are used to produce a strong rhythmical movement that compliments the music. This dance has closed position as well as single handhold and double handhold movements. Often at an advanced level, the couple may be in apart or solo position. Because of this dance’s easy adaptation to modern music, the Cha Cha is probably the most popular of the Latin Dances.
Time signature – 4/4
Tempo – 30 measures per minute
Timing – 1234&
Beat value is 1-1-1-1/2-1/2