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A night of salsa with Colombia’s Swing Latino

Muthi Achadiat Kautsar
Muthi Achadiat Kautsar

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Sun, July 29, 2018  /  09:07 am
A night of salsa with Colombia’s Swing Latino

Swing Latino dancers get into the swing of things at Graha Bakti Budaya, Ckini, Central Jakarta, on Tuesday. (JP/Wienda Parwitasari)

A Colombian cultural tour has made Jakarta one of its destinations. The tour, part of the Promotion Plan of Colombia Abroad, is part of the cultural diplomacy initiated by Colombia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Its aim is to present Colombia to the world -- a country that excels in cultural expressions, art, music, dance, literature and gastronomy, among others.

The cultural tour in conjunction with the Embassy of Colombia in Jakarta held a Swing Latino Colombian salsa show at Graha Bhakti Budaya (GBB) in Cikini, Central Jakarta, on Tuesday.

It featured Swing Latino, a salsa dance school and academy hailing from Cali, Colombia. The school is represented by three couples.

Swing Latino is more than just a touring company, it is also designed to empower underprivileged kids in Colombia.

The dance squad truly embodies the popular quote dance like nobody’s watching, showcasing flamboyance and high energy as they shift weight effortlessly, hips swinging in calculated moves.

Female dancers were lifted and flung several meters in the air by their male partners, many times held upside down, while their facial expressions remained nonchalant. Truly a moment’s worth of Instagram stories. And the event organizer was pretty relaxed about the audience taping the show using smartphones, while encouraging them to clap and cheer.

At some point, the dancers would lip-sync the songs they were dancing to, fully enjoying their moment on stage.

Most of the audience could only dream of mastering such dance techniques or consider enrolling themselves in salsa classes after the show. However, the Colombians hosting the show and the dance squad were very approachable.

A group of salsa dance students had their turn to perform while Swing Latino took a short break, as if sending a message that salsa is for everyone.

Meanwhile, in between sequences, the host of the show came out to greet the audience, commented on the performance and reminded the audience that they were not to leave the seats except to dance along.

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As Swing Latino returned to perform their final dance sequences, they ended their performance by walking off the stage and asked the audience to dance. Everyone in the auditorium joined in and enjoyed the evening together.