Calinda is a martial art, cultural dance and accompanying form of percussive music that arose in the early 18th century among Africans enslaved in Trinidad and Tobago. In the competition, fighters/dancers challenge each other with long sticks while community members chant and cheer them on. Though inspired by actual fighting techniques in the African Congo, today one will most likely encounter Calinda as a joyfully musical sporting event, full of acrobatic dancing and trance-like chants, during Trinidad & Tobago’s brilliant Carnival.
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