What is Merengue?

Merengue is a type of lively, joyful music and dance that comes from the Dominican Republic.

Origins are still disputed and traced to the second half of 18th century.
Merengue, in its easiest form looks as follows. With monotonous thumping 1-2-3-4 bass drum beat, all steps are on one beat and have a characteristic limping appearance.

Partners hold each other in closed position and do walks sideways or circle each other, in small steps. They can further switch to a double handhold position and do separate turns never letting go each other's hands. During these turns they may twist and tie their handhold into intricate pretzels. Other choreography is possible.

Although the tempo of the music may be frantic, the upper body is kept majestic and turns are slow, typically four beats/steps per complete turn.