Have You Ever Heard Of A Dance Form Called Azonto?

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Ghanaian dancing Azonto

An Azonto performer

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Originating from Ghana in West Africa is a dance (and music genre) known as Azonto. It is extremely popular especially in coastal towns in the country such as Chorkor, La Teshie, Nungua, and Tema. Now, the question to be asked is, what does this African dance style entail? To answer this question here is then presenting to you an analysis explaining a few facts about this dance that you need to know.


Females performing Azonto moves.

a. What is Azonto Dance? 

‘Kpanlogo’ is a traditional Ghanaian dance from which ‘Azonto’ has been created. Furthermore, this dance involves the use of hands and leg (particularly the knees) movements. Apparently, this style of dancing was created to serve as a mode of communication in the society. However, it is now used to help people exchange coded messages among themselves. It was in the year 2013 that this form of dancing became popular not only within Ghana but also other African nations via music videos. In fact, popular African footballers such as Ghanaian Asamoah Gyan and Togolese legend Emmanuel Adebayor have performed this rhythmic dance to celebrate a goal.

b. What does Azonto mean? 

‘Abontoa’ (which means ugly girl) is the word from which Azonto has been derived. This word when translated literally refers to ‘a badly behaved girl’.

c. How to dance Azonto step by step?

‘An expressive freestyle dance’ is how Azonto can best be described as. The unique feature of this dance being the complete absence of set rules. However, there are few basic moves that must be learnt so as to perform this dance style. They are as follows:

  1. Feet:  The performer must place his/her right foot in front of the left, and then twist the leg on the ball of the right foot.
  2. Hands:  The performer must cross his/her right wrist over the left, and point the index fingers. Now, as the twisting of the leg is completed the performer needs to move his/her right arm forwards and backwards.
  3. Cracking: This move also known as ‘Popping’ requires the performer after completing the twist of the leg to raise his/her right arm with clenched fists and then pop the hip.

In addition, imitating daily chores actions such as ironing of clothes, washing, driving, boxing, praying, swimming etc are also a part of the basic moves of this dance style.

d. How to dance Azonto YouTube Video: 

If after reading all the critical information about ‘Azonto’ mentioned above, you want to watch how it is performed. Here is then presenting a YouTube Video illustrating the way it is done:

And so, in a nutshell Azonto is a fun filled dance originating from Ghana which involves rhythmic movement of the hands, feet, and hip.

Image Credits: Flickr and Wikimedia Commons

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