When the Brazilian Samba was first introduced to the U.S. Dance Masters in 1929, it became an overnight sensation. Like many other Brazilian dances, the music is an amalgamation of African and Latin American rhythm that is adorned with expressive, melodic lines. In form, the Samba is a serenade; the repetition of its melody is continually interrupted by the strumming of a guitar or other stringed instruments. Originating in Bahia, Brazil, the dance first became popular in Rio de Janeiro, and later, its intoxicating rhythm was taken up by serious Latin American composers.
The Samba is festive and lighthearted, and performed today in all parts of the world. It brings to mind pictures of Rio’s Carnival. In its native land the Samba is usually danced to a moderately slow tempo which contrasts vividly with the spirited version favored in U.S. The Samba has withstood the test of time and still ranks high among social as well as competitive dancers.