Cumbia Dance Lessons

We complement our social Latin dance series with Cumbia classes! This style of dancing goes hand in hand with our Salsa dance lessons, and is very typical in Mexico and the southwest United States, including of course, Austin.

Above: Our instructors showing double follow turns into cuddles, hammerlocks, and bridge turns for the leads.


Alfonso Montes
Hola.. mi nombre es Alfonso. He venido tomando clases de Cumbia en Dance Internacional y la verdad me a ayudado mucho en mi técnica de baile, así como en mi confianza para bailar.. realmente estoy muy agradecido con los maestros de baile. Gracias Dance International!!! Hi .. my name is Alfonso. I’ve been taking Cumbia classes in Dance International and it has helped me a lot in my dance technique, as well as in my confidence to dance … I’m really very grateful to the dance masters. Thanks Dance International!!!
Alfonso Montes



Cumbia Origins

Because Latin America is so diverse, so are the cumbias! In our classes Helen teaches Back-Break and Tejano. Cumbia started in Colombia with artists like Carlos Vives, Bomba Estéreo, Andrés Cabas, and Humberto Pernet, and then moved to Mexico and produced hits like Mi gallo tuerto, Caprichito, and Nochebuena. It spread rapidly all over Latin America and finally caught on in America. Tejano singer, Selena Quintanilla, has world famous techno/Mexican cumbias.

Cumbia started in Colombia and was danced by slaves in the area to showoff for courtship (that’s why it’s sexy and playful) and express resistance from Spain (why it is so wild and original and why it was layered with European instruments). The earliest cumbias only used drums and claves.

En Español

Porque América Latina es tan diversa, ¡también son las cumbias! En nuestras clases Helen enseña la original y Tejana. Cumbia comenzó en Colombia con artistas como Carlos Vives, Bomba Estéreo, Andrés Cabas y Humberto Pernet, y luego se trasladó a México y produjo éxitos como Mi gallo tuerto, Caprichito y Nochebuena. La Cumbia se extendió rápidamente por toda América Latina y finalmente se apoderó de América. La cantante de Tejano, Selena Quintanilla, tiene cumbias de tecno mejocano famosas en el mundo.

Cumbia comenzó en Columbia y fue bailada por esclavos en la zona para mostrarse para el cortejo (es por eso que es sexy y juguetóna) y apara expresar la resistencia de España (por qué es tan salvaje y original y por qué tenía instrumentos europeos). Las primeras Cumbias solo usaban tambores y claves.


Where can I dance it?

You can either look for Cumbia heavy clubs like Cielo downtown, or go to any of the Latin social events in Austin. In general, anywhere were they play Salsa and Bachata will also play some Cumbia, and most dedicated dancers prefer the variety as well. You’ll recognize it by it’s galloping cowboy rhythm, exaggerated moves and high energy. Don’t sit out the dance and come learn with us!

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