This promotional video shows what I did last week. If you search Djamboola on YouTube, you will find many videos. So far this dance fitness has only been in Montreal, as the creator is based there. He toured Europe last month, so as to promote Djamboola, as it is quite loved already and African music, especially Afrobeats, is booming in Europe. Djamboola is somewhat like Zumba, however has a much stronger African influence, reducing South American styles to a minimum influence. This is what attracted me to attend the Journées de la Culture event.
Soon after I arrived at the studio, I made friends with a regular Djamboola-er (as I will call it). She told me her experience and even informed me of another instructor, who concentrates on traditional Ghanaian dance — sadly I can not afford that class at this time, but maybe in the future. By the time the session began, I had talked to a few others and worked up my excitement while stretching to some great beats. Richard (the instructor) led us in a warm-up that was a good hint as to what was to come. It did not take long for my body temperature to feel as though I were back in Ghana, despite the local temperature being only twenty Celsius. Any time we stopped, we had enough time to realize we were dancing again. We danced, we yelled, I even had to stop myself a few times to re-coordinate myself, as it did not take long to get tired. I must have gone through three jars of water during the session, causing me to run to the bathroom as soon as the session ended. While I was already aware of this, I was reminded during the Cuban part that I definitely find it easier to follow African movements than South American. While I believe the only people who cannot learn anything are those who tell themselves they cannot, it has always taken me longer to learn South American dances than African (or Caribbean).
Having arrived mere hours earlier from his tour of Europe, Richard invited us to stay afterwards, allowing us to meet others. It was fun to meet him properly, while also meeting other leaders, other regulars and other newbies. By making friends that night, I definitely gave myself more reason to return, something I will definitely do. Sadly I am busy for the next two weeks, however I am going to MAKE the time after that! If you are in the area, or if Djamboola pops up in your area, I definitely recommend you check it out!