The Universal language




As humans, when we’re happy, we dance. When we’re excited, we dance. When we want to celebrate, we dance. We love going to parties to dance. But have you ever thought where did that come from? Well, probably ever since the beginning of existence!

We know dance now as a form of art that is made by recreating selected sequences of movements representing values of aesthetic and symbolism, but this is not only what dance has been about in the old days.

Dance began as a form of ceremony, religious and healing rituals, celebrations and entertainment, it was also practiced as a form of community bonding.

It is difficult to identify the exact time that humans discovered dancing, but there has been found traces of wall paintings that shows dancing rituals that goes as far as 3300 BC in ancient civilizations like the Greek and Egyptian ones.

However, since dancing is, like languages, used to communicate and express, it also varies from one region to another and just like languages we can identify where each dance comes from, so let’s take a tour around the dancing globe and see some of the most traditional dances around the world.

Bollywood Dance

This dance combines both Indian dance and music with big Hollywood movie-style set. You can expect the dresses to not just be bright but colorful too.



Shaolin Monk Dance

With a tradition that’s more than 1,500 years old, these have combined their knowledge, discipline and their martial art in order to make this dance form their very own.



Cossack Dance

Also known as Gopak, it’s considered to be the official dance of Ukraine and is composed of visually and technically amazing acrobatic feats. These include jumps, spins and are usually the highlight of the performance.



Irish Stepdance

Casually known as river dance thanks to the popularity of an interval act in 1994 called River dance; this dance can be done solo or by a group and is characterized by stiffened upper bodies while performing quick and intricate footwork.

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Members of the Sheila Tully School of Irish Dance perform Saturday, March 17, 2007, during the 52nd Annual Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)


Lion Dance

This is a form of traditional dance in Chinese culture wherein the performers mimic how a lion moves while wearing a lion costume.




One of the primary dances in Portugal, it involves the dancers tapping their feet and quickly changing their positions.

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Polka Dance

The polka is a Central European dance and a genre of dance music familiar throughout Europe and the Americas.

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Salsa is a dance form with origins from the Cuban Son and Afro-Cuban dance. This partner dance is quite sensual in its form since it’s known for having flirtatious movements.

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This is danced to slow, melodic music and it requires the dancers to execute fluid and delicate movement.

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Belly Dance

This dance is also known as “Raqs Sharqi” and is traditionally a solo dance done by women. This Middle Eastern dance was taught within families and performed during celebrations.

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Known for its beauty and grace; Ballet is a dance which originated during the Italian Renaissance courts in the 15th century. Later on, it developed into a concert dance.

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Tango is an Argentinean dance known to be one of the most difficult to master. Nevertheless, it never fails to amaze each time is performed.

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Ranya Moustafa



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