Kizomba in Portugal (my personal perception of a 1 time experience)
This was my first dancing trip to Lisbon to discover how kizomba in Portugal is. I have been to this beautiful country before, but I didn’t dance kizomba at that time, and, you know, you see it with different eyes then and put your accents on a different place.
I´ve been always told that I wouldn´t dance well here, because it´s almost all traditional, and, you know, I´m an Urban dancer. I imagined it wouldn´t be that great, but still wouldn’t miss a chance to dance if I ever come here. So, on Friday morning, few hours before taking my flight, I put all my duties aside and jumped into the Facebook jungle to search for any kizomba party taking place in is on this weekend. Obviously I found some. Later, on Saturday morning, at the Kaizen dance workshop with Kwenda Lima, I re-confirmed information and took some advise on which was the best place to go.
And the winner was the View Rooftop bar party! Sounded at least beautiful! And it was!! Although absolutely not what I had thought. It was happening in the evening time, finishing at 11 pm, which is the earliest kizomba party I´ve ever attended. To compare with, in Luxembourg evening parties finish at 1 am. But here in Portugal, it gets darker earlier. At 9 it’s already dark at summer time.
I was quite relaxed by the party time. After having cried out all my dirty stuff teas at Kwenda´s studio, having bathed in the Atlantic frozen ocean, and having drunk a couple of sangrias at +42 C (lucky with the weather, what can I say! Lol)), I was already in my ZEN mode…
I loved it. This is the kizomba I really like- Ghetto zouk. Songs that have some meaning, some story, some feeling… Of course, there was traditional as well, but not only. And the mix was nice. I was actually signing all the time, because I knew and loved all of them. Pretty old playlist, but let´s say “popular hits”. My portugués partners were signing with me jajaj. They thought I spoke portugués too lol.
So much criticizing “Europe” (by Europe I mean mainly France and Benelux) for the sexualization of kizomba.. Hmmm.. I believed it was very decent in Portugal.
The first dancer I take is a well-built and well-smelling black man. He pulls me in with a terrible force and I can feel his “thing” horizontally lying on my belly!!! I´m not shocked, but still… I remark. We move in a very sensual way (just the way I like) – two waving bodies in unison, making soft curves. In 5 minutes I´m asked in portugués “Where is your hotel?” (I don´t speak it, but I understand!). I say “No”. Next question “Where is your apartment?”. I say “No” again, and he´s curious where I stay then!?? I say “NO SEX!!!!” This I guess in all languages sound the same))) The guy is sincerely surprised by my answer. And me, I am finally convinced that the sexualization doesn’t depend on the country, on the type of music or anything else. It’s all across the world atlas, music genres, ages, etc…
“B-Leza” – one of the top places for dancing kizomba in Portugal. I was recommended it. And besides there was a party on Saturday evening everyone was going to. The guys from the View Roof party too. Besides it was 10 minutes walk from my hotel. All matches. I was looking forward to discover it, to get more experiences, emotions and as much information as possible for my blog.
When I entered I got really confused.The atmosphere was different from the parties I’m used to. I don’t even know how to describe it with words. But it was not the matter of not knowing anyone. Sometimes I went to parties in Spain, for example, where I knew nobody neither. But here it was a different feeling. Uncomfortable. All men were watching me… I felt myself like a peace of meat. I started to look around and realized that there were almost no white ladies. Very few, and they all were under 45-50 years old. That made me feel weird. Moreover, they were not classy. Neither men nor women.
The place and the atmosphere reminded me the 80-x, something like my first social dance parties in a small park of the village where my grand-mother lived, and I wouldn’t lie if I say that I even got a bit scared.
There was was no air-conditioner… +43 С.
I tried to dance as much as possible, but the music was rather strange. I don’t even know what kind of genre some of the sets were… I’ve never heard anything similar in my life, and I didn’t know how to dance to it. Nevertheless, at times of the traditional and a bit of Ghetto zouk I couldn’t dance well. I didn’t like any. And it’s not because I’m a bad traditional dancer, no. It’s because the partners were rather bad.
I can recognize that I almost have no skills in Traditional, but I know when guys dance it well. That was not the case. I think most of them never had one workshop in their life. I was disappointed… in the overall situation.
Until I saw one guy dancing. He was that urban french style. I was watching him dance and thinking “What are you doing here?”. Definitely, he didn’t learn to dance kizomba in Portugal. He was from Paris, as I discovered 15 minutes later dancing with him.
He saved my night.
Maybe it’s because i’m not used to dance kizomba in Portugal, maybe it depends on each party, or a day, or a Deejay. I don’t know, but the general impression is that it’s a bit “old-fashioned”, and a kind of… boring. I still prefer dancing in France and Benelux.