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Nearly 1 million Africans from West and Central Africa were captured by Cuba's Spanish
colonists and brought to Cuba during the 16th through 19th centuries.
We would like to introduce to you the beauty of dances seeped in historical significance
As Cuba's plantations expanded in the late 18th and 19th centuries, so did the slave
trade. Most enslaved Africans in Cuba were Yoruba from Nigeria.
Most of the dances are from the Afro-Cuban religion of Santeria These dances originate
from Yoruba traditions imported by enslaved Africans into Cuba . These slaves were
controlled by the spanish and were forced to speak Spanish and convert to Christianity.
In order to preserve their native religious traditions, the slaves gave their African
dieties the names of Christian saints and thus continued to worship them. This
religion is known as Santeria, and under disguise, many religious rituals, dances
and musical traditions from Africa were preserved. Santeria is still practised in
Afro Cubano dance brings life to these Orishsas (saints) - Eleggua, Oggun, Oshun,
Chango, Yemaya, Arara, Obatala, and many others.