This dance couple is amazing. Here we have Boni and Neverly Paris dancing a really interesting mix of zouk, kizomba, and kompa (or compas or konpa), and how well does it work?! And there is a pretty good reason why all of these dance styles have overlapping influences, which allows them to fuse together as perfectly as they do in this video.

YouTube video

The dance style that came first was kompa. This was developed in Haiti in the 1950s and is a meringue style dance, danced in a two-step square. Most movements are made with the hips and it has some salsa flares. It was created to be danced with kompa music, and it spread in popularity around the Caribbean.

When kompa music, and kompa dancing, reached the French Antilles, it developed into zouk. This was popularized by the French Antilles band Kassav in the 1980s. The original zouk was fast and energetic but towards the end of the decade, a slower and more romantic style emerged. Zouk dance isn’t exactly the same as konpa dance. It is a fusion between kompa and other dance styles, such as samba and lambada, to create a whole new dance style. The typical movements are side-to-side as well as rippling forward and back in a wave-like motion. You often also see some amazing hair flipping.

Kizomba originated in Angola. The music is influenced by konpa and Angolan semba. As with kompa and zouk, the kizomba dance style emerged as a way to dance to the music of the same name. It has its roots in the semba dancing popular in the region but adapted to fit the new style of music. Kizomba dancing is characterised by elegant footwork, smooth body movements, and perfect synchronisation as a couple. You can see all of these influences in the video of Boni and Neverly and it is amazing to see all of these distinct, but related, dance styles put together so perfectly!

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