[Tango-L] Kizomba & Canyengue together at last....

Tom Stermitz stermitz at tango.org
Tue Feb 5 19:33:49 EST 2008

The rivers of culture often divide far back in time. They may meet  
again, but sometimes it is just morphological coincidence.

 From all these videos, Kizomba seems more closely related to salsa  
and african club dancing than it is to tango.

African club music got back to Lisbon following the collapse of the  
Portuguese colonial empire. I saw some awesome african music in Lisbon  
nightclubs in the mid-eighties. Not like any of the other afro-pop  
stuff, like King Sunny Ode.

Kwende Lima's accent is totally portuguese, rather than Brazilian.  
Very odd to my ears, as the Brazilian is so musical and the portuguese  
so chopped-up and like Spain spanish. This suggests to me that he is  
of Portuguese African heritage, meaning that he might know kizomba,  
but would never have known canyengue, unless he learned it via tango.

He clearly knows some tango. In that videos he does ochos, sandwiches  
and other specifically tango elements. Frankly, I think he is  
combining his knowledge of Kizomba and tango to make a show, something  

I mean, you've got people mixing west-coast swing (R&B music) with  
tango. Sure, both dances have african roots, but it is a bit  
reductionist to claim that the connecting thread is African. The  
direct connecting thread comes from a few dancers (or maybe a single  
dancer... guess who?) in the US in the 1990s who knew both dances.

On Feb 5, 2008, at 4:28 PM, m i l e s wrote:

> Hi,
> ...
> In my neophyte tango mind, there can be no doubt that the two dances
> are connected by a very clear thread.
> Tango's roots are buried forever in the stream of time, trade routes,
> and royal decrees.
> What we have today is what we have.  And we're working with that.
> However, to me, the roots of both Canyengue and Kizomba in Tango are
> clear as day.  And that's what I'm goin with.
> Miles.

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