Tel: (808) 256-7556 * 2615 South King Street B310* Honolulu, Hawaii 96826 *Email * Map * Mail Order
Day Class Schedule
Tuesday and Thursday
Intermediate & Beginners
Bachata, Salsa, Merengue and Cha Cha Cha classes
12 noon -1:00 p.m.
Day classes are small groups and you get lots of personal attention.
Classes may be cancelled if there are not enough students.
Please call us at 256-7556 and let us know you are coming.
Sugino Dance Studio
770 Kapiolani Blvd, Rm 406, Honolulu
Parking in the back of Building
Learn to dance Merengue!
From the Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Merengue is a type of lively, joyful music and dance that comes from Hispaniola. It is popular in the Dominican Republic, and Haiti. Haitian Merengue (A slower Merengue as known in Haiti) is very similr to Merengue (the more popular version known in the Dominican Republic), but is danced differently and sung slower.
Merengue means whipped egg whites and sugar in Spanish, similar to the English word meringue. It is unclear as to why the name became the name of the music of the Dominican Republic. But, perhaps, can trace its meaning from the movement on the dance floor that could remind one of an egg beater in action.
This style of music was created by Nico Lora in the 1920s; however, it was promoted by Rafael Trujillo, the president from the 1930s through the early 1960s, and eventually became the country's national music and dance style. It was during the Trujillo era that the popular merengue, "Compadre Pedro Juan", by Luis Alberti, became an international hit.
World famous Merengue singers include Miriam Cruz & Las Chicas Del Can, Los Hermanos Rosario, Juan Luis Guerra, Wilfrido Vargas, Sergio Vargas, Johnny Ventura, Kinito Mendez, Ravel, Josie Esteban y la Patrulla 15, Pochy y su Cocoband, Fernando Villalona, Cuco Valoy, The Freddie Kenton Orquestra, Elvis Crespo and Conjunto Quisqueya. Other artists popular in the Dominican Republic as of 2006 include Julian, Tono Rosario, Aquakate, and Amarfis. Milly Quezada is known as the Queen of Merengue.
The popularity of Merengue is growing fast in Puerto Rico, due to the high Dominican influence, and immigrants on the island, such Puerto Rican Merengueros include Elvis Crespo, Olga Tanon, Grupo, Mania, Limite 21.
Meter: 2/4, tempo: fast.
The traditional instrumentation for a conjunto típico (traditional band), the usual performing group of folk merengue, is a diatonic accordion, a two sided drum held on the lap called a tambora, and a güira. A güira (Gwee-ra) is a percussion instrument that sounds like a maraca but in fact is a sheet of metal perforated with a nail, shaped into a cylinder, and played with a stiff brush.
The guira is brushed steadily on the downbeat with a "and-a" thrown in at certain points, or played in more complex patterns that generally mark the time. "Caballito" rhythm, or a quarter and two eighths, is also common. The double headed drum is played on one side with a stick syncopation and on the other side with the palm of the hand.
The traditional (some say fundamental) signature rhythm figure of merengue is the quintillo, which is essentially a syncopated motif whose pattern is broken by five successive drum head hits at the transition between every second and third beat, alternating between the hand and the stick.
To purists, a merengue without quintillo is not truly a merengue, a viewpoint that has gradually fallen in disuse as other alternate figures are used more frequently (as the one traditionally called "jaleo", also known as "merengue bomba", wrongly identified as a mixture of merengue and Puerto Rican bomba music, and which actually also has its roots in traditional merengue).
Típico groups play a variety of rhythms, but most common are the merengue and the pambiche. In the 1930s-50s a bass instrument was also often used. Called marimba, it resembles the Cuban marimbula, and is a large box-shaped thumb piano with 3-6 metal keys.
In more urban settings, merengue is played with all manner of instrumentation, but the tambora and the guira are signatures. Today, orquesta, or big band, merengue is most popular. It uses a large horn section with paired saxophones, piano, timbales, hi-hat, backup singers, and conga in addition to tambora, guira, and bass.
In modern merengue típico a saxophone is an addition to the accordion, along with electric bass guitar. A proof of the great adaptability of the music can be found in the Dominican National Symphony's presentation in 2003 of a concert series entitled "Symphonic Merengue" in which the Symphonic Orchestra consisting of woodwinds, brass, strings, and the like played popular tunes.
These are the Top 10 Merengue videos on You Tube.
Please email us any nice Merengue videos we haved missed.