Zouk (from the Creole word meaning “party”) is a sensual partner dance that emerged from the music of the French Caribbean islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique in the mid-1980s. It exists in two popular forms, the simpler original Caribbean form, and the Brazilian zouk-lambada form (the style taught at UTDC and most dance studios), which incorporates many flowing steps, turns, hand combinations and dramatic hair movements. Unlike salsa, which is led by the arms and hands, zouk is led at the hips. In recent years, zouk has spread throughout South America, Africa, Europe, Australia, and Southeast Asia. It is particularly dominant in France and French-speaking African nations.
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