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Female Pachanga Dancer for Streetswing dance history origins

                 The Pachanga music history or origin was a hybrid rhythm conceived of elements of both the Merengue and the Conga (Merenconga), which began its song hits in Colombia, Cuba in 1955 and arriving with some success in the U.S. around 1959. Originally confused as the Charanga it would later be identified as the 'La Pachanga.' Eduardo Davidson is given credit for creating the dance but others have claimed it to be a combination of the Pacheco style and Charanga, (Flutist Johnny Pacheco being Co-founder of the Fania Records Company and the group the Fania All-stars.) However his site states 1963 and as only introducing it.

   The Pachanga in its beginnings was fast and syncopated and only had seven variations but when mixed with the Cha-Cha (Pachanga-Cha)

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acquired hundreds more. The Pachanga and Charanga Dance are said to be primarily the same. Pachanga means 'Cuban dance' or 'Lively Party'. The most popular music for this dance is still the Charanga. The Pachanga dance replaced the Cha-Cha dance in its short lived popularity in the early 1960's and like the Bossa Nova never really caught on.

In this clip Dance Legend Eddie Torres teaches the Pachanga and a few variations.


Birth Place

Creation Date


Dance Type

Colombia, Cuba 1955 Eduardo Davidson Latin


Posters, Lobby Cards etc.

CD Compilations

Music Titles

n/a Charanga Pachanga [CD]
A Bailar Pachanga [MP3]
      La Pachanga [CD] Bronx Pachanga (Charlie Palmieri)
      Mister Pachanga: Leyendas/Legends [CD] Charanga
      Pa la Pachanga [CD] El Chivo

Sheet Music

Pachanga at the Caravana Club [CD] El Mundo Esta Al Reyes
      Pachanga Cha Cha Cha Anyone [CD] El Pachaguero
      Pachanga Mix [CD] Gozando La Pachanga
        La Pachanga (Son)
            Mas Pachanga (Ray Barretto)
            Pachanga [MP3]
            Pachanga Beat
            Pachanga N' Changa (Joe Quijano)
            Son de Pachanga (Johnny Pacheco)
            Tu No Estas En Nada
            Viva La Pachanga

Night Clubs



Caravana Club (Bronx, NY) 1962 - Apollo Theatre (NY) n/a
El Morrocco        
High Seas Club (Havana)        
Palladium (NY)        
Stork Club (NY)        
Waldorf Hotel (NY)            

Films / Movies


Ballets / Stage

1981 - La Pachanga n/a n/a
Dirty Dancing (mention only)        


            11/1960 - Dance Magazine

Other Related Dances of the time...

Cha Cha Guaracha Mambo Rumba
Charanga La Bimbi Merenconga Salsa
Conga Latin Merengue Son
Danzón Le Frisson Pachanga Cha  

Dancers, Choreographers etc.


Ann Margaret Killer Joe Piro n/a
Eduardo Davidson    

Books, Magazine Articles on the dance...

Title Author Date Published Publisher
Ballroom Dance Magazine n/a 7/1961 n/a
Pachanga International Magazine n/a n/a n/a
$ Betty White Learn to Dance Set: Pachanga Betty White 1998 Conversa-Phone Inst
$ Jazz Dance: Story of American Vernacular Dance Stearns 1995 DeCapo Press

Musicians/ Bands etc




Anatobal's Latin All Stars. Peter Hurd Print - La Pachanga n/a n/a
Audrey Arno          
Charlie Palmieri          
Joe Loco          
J0e Quijano          
Johnny Pacheco          
Joe Sherman & His Pachanga Kings            
Mon Rivera & Orchestra            
Ray Barretto            
Rolando Orchestra            
Tito Puente            
Warren Covington            

Misc. Research Words that may be related ... to help your searches

Aragon and Johnny Charanga Marencumbae  
caballo Clave Salsa    
March 26, 2013