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Cuchi-cuchi coo!


Charo hopes her 'Cuchi' dance will be next craze

June 5, 1997
Web posted at: 6:24 p.m. EDT (2224 GMT)

From Correspondent Bill Tush

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Charo is one of only a handful of celebrities who can get away with going through life with just one name. She started out as a staple of the talk-show circuit with her trademark "Coochie-coochie." Then she became a regular guest on the TV show "The Love Boat." Now, she's looking to create the next big dance craze.

In case you hadn't noticed, the pop and fire of the long-running hit "Macarena" has fizzled and burned out; it's now relegated to dance music for only the squarest of parties. So it has become this Latin spitfire's personal mission to make you update your dance repertory and get moving to "The Cuchi Cuchi Dance."

Coochie-Coochie music video

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(638K/12 sec. Small frame QuickTime movie)
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(4.6M/12 sec. Large frame QuickTime movie)

"It's taking off already out in the school, the children love it, teen-agers and children, oh yeah they love it," Charo said. She attributes its success so far to its outrageous moves.


Since Charo holds the record for the most guest appearances on "The Love Boat," we thought it only appropriate to meet up with her at a New York cruise line, where passersby got free Cuchi lessons.

One of her students wanted to know where all this Cuchi stuff started, anyway. The answer, according to Charo: As a child she copied an ugly pooch that used to belong to her grandparents.

"His name was 'Cuchillo,' which is knife (in Spanish), and that ugly dog, when he bite you he cuts you, that's why his nickname was Cuchillo, they call him Cuchi for short," she said. Cuchi apparently liked to wiggle, and she copied him.

"It was the only pet for me to play with because my cousin was older," she said. "So the dog wiggle and I wiggle." And the name stuck.

When Charo isn't out recruiting Cuchi dancers in New York, she can be found in Honolulu, Hawaii, in her long-running stage show. "I have a beautiful show, five days a week from Tuesday to Saturday, which we entertain the whole world, Japanese, Chinese, Canadians, Australians," she said.

And if Charo can get all of those people from all over the world to do her little dance, even if she has to do it one person at a time, that would be a real Cuchi-Cuchi coup.


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