Category Archives: Guest posts

10 Ways to Honor the Kizomba Culture

By Rui Djassi Moracén

One cannot expect somebody who’s never been to Angola – or knows nothing about its troubled past – to fully grasp how the simple act of dancing, singing and socializing has always served as collective catharsis for its people. As Achille Mbembe, highly respected Cameroonian philosopher and political theorist puts it:

“Music has the capacity to marry soul and matter. Indeed, in Africa, music has always been a celebration of the ineradicability of life, in a long life-denying history. It is the genre that has historically expressed, in the most haunting way, our raging desire not only for existence, but more importantly for joy in existence – what we should call the practice of joy before death”.

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Courage & Compassion in Kizomba

By Keya Bhagirath

Just before I started dancing, I enrolled in a program called Engaged Compassion. Engaged compassion is a practice of awareness through the lens of radical acceptance of self. It creates an intention of non-judgement that allows for safe introspection. This program required that I spend time weekly looking inward; one could call this a self check-in. Some methods of introspection included retreats, guided meditation, journaling, creative art projects and group discussion, all engineered to give me a glimpse of my inner world. I went through a transformative experience that showed me that I was not living a life that satisfied my soul. I craved a life that was expressive, spontaneous, free, beautiful; a life that felt more authentic to who I was discovering myself to be.

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Kizomba Newbie

My Kizomba-versay is July 24, 2016. That’s the day that I met the dance that would change my life in ways I would have never imagined! Kizomba is not just a dance for me: it is my dance, true love and soulmate. It speaks to my being; it is a living metaphor for my life. It is the place in my life where all the things that I love converge. It has been one of the sweetest surprises of my life thus far.

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Greg’s Story: the DC Bachata Congress 2016

A note from Rachel Cassandra: I attended the DC Bachata Congress this year as a representative of, and I asked many people what stood out to them about the festival, or why it was significant for them. Greg e-mailed me this gorgeous response. I knew I couldn’t fit more than a tiny fraction of it into my write-up for LDC, so I asked him if I could publish it in its entirety here. He agreed! What follows are his own words.

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