Brazil is home to many beautiful, complex music and dance styles. One of the styles from Northeastern Brazil that is the most popular in that region, forró, is celebrated each year in June around the world in workshops where visitors can listen, watch forró being performed and then learn the complicated dance moves for themselves. The festivals are traditionally held in June when other celebrations in honor of Christian saints are often held in Brazil.
In a Forró Festival workshop in Stuttgart, Germany in June 2014, the Forró de Domingo Festival, dancing pair Juzinha and Valmir Pe Descalco show off the rhythms and moves of the forró to the shock and awe of the crowd gathered around them sitting on the dance floor and standing along the walls of the room.
To the sound of traditional Brazilian forró music, Juzinha and Valmir perform movements similar to the samba, salsa and some Caribbean dances. Sweeping mirrored and complementary foot, leg, arm and hand movements make up the majority of the dance with both dancers filling traditional male and female dance roles. Juzinha twirls and shimmies around Valmir and, at one point, Valmir also lifts Juzinha and then pulls her through his legs.
The movements are very reminiscent of 1940’s swing dancing but with a more rustic musical accompaniment that typically includes an accordion, triangle and zabumba as the main instruments. Although lyrics can accompany forró music and dance, the dancers in this video move to the sound of the instruments alone.