Our Definition of Samba

Samba is a spot dance, meaning you can learn how to dance Samba by learning the basic one-and-two steps first and then building upon those steps. Arthur Murray teaches Samba danced in 2/4 time. In the basic moves, leaders step forward with their left foot on step “one,” while followers step back with their right foot. On the “and-two” both dancers close their feet and collect them underneath their body, switching weight with every count. Then the leader steps back on the right foot, and followers step forward on the left foot. The rhythm reflects “boom-da-doom, boom-da-doom” and your feet imitate the same pulse.

The most important and unique aspect of Samba is the bounce. When you step, you emphasize a bounce with an upswing motion. Another important feature of Samba to learn is the motion of stepping over a log between partners. Your legs will soften and straighten, soften and straighten. To embrace and execute the true appeal of the Samba, dancers learn how to incorporate happy, often flirtatious and energetic interpretation. Many steps require pelvic tilts. This action takes practice to accomplish at first, but dancers at Arthur Murray find ease with their expert teacher’s instruction.

All of the teachers at Arthur Murray complete a very demanding training program before they can teach any dance. Depending on your style of learning and dancing needs, professional and knowledgeable teachers are hand-selected and lessons are tailored to best suit you.

The Roots of Samba

The word “samba” stems from semba, which refers to an “invitation to dance” and was a common name for dance parties among slaves in the countryside of Rio de Janeiro. Over time, Samba gained influence and evolved into Samba-cancao, or a slower, more romantic version. Samba de morro, a more percussive and funkier style of Samba, is the most widely danced style today. The primary inspiration for the Samba de morro were the “escolas de samba,” or samba schools, who play and dance for the annual Rio Carnival, the largest carnival festival in the world. Rio Carnival is filled with elaborate costumes, floats, singing and dancing, bringing in half a million tourists each year to share in the celebration.

How We Teach Samba

Beginner dancers start with the basics and slowly build on the moves and increase the tempo, while intermediate to highly skilled dancers learn to integrate intricate moves at a fast pace. In this way, learning Samba at Arthur Murray is for dancers of all levels.

Women typically dance Samba in platform heels and costumes adorned with sequins and feathers. We encourage dancers to have fun, but elaborate outfits are not required in the studio.

Dancers love Arthur Murray because we encourage them to be socially and physically active. Dancing can introduce you to potential friends that you might not have met otherwise. To sign up for your first class, you do not have to be a great dancer and you do not have to have a partner. Our dancers love coming to Arthur Murray because of our talented, supportive and fun teachers, for the new friends they make, and for the fact that dancing keeps dancers mentally and physically fit.

Arthur Murray Scottsdale is currently open and accepting new students for lessons during COVID-19.