Buzzing from last night . . .

Not sure if this belongs here but ....

I had a great time last night performing a bachata with a friend. We danced at a Christmas Party for about 70 or 80 retired ladies, all aged 65+ and many up in their 80s or more. It was fun and we sang Christmas carols with the ladies. There was also a singer who performed, and a saxophone player did 2 songs. Then my friend (who is my age) performed 2 line dances with a subset of the retired ladies. This subset of ladies all have various types of physical difficulties or have survived illness, and formed a line dance group with my friend as teacher.

Then after that, my friend and I went and danced last, doing a non-choreographed non-rehearsed social dance together. We did a bachata to the Katanah (sp?) cover of Wrecking Ball. I would have preferred something less commercial and more rustic / stripped down. But hey.

Anyway it went off without a hitch and the ladies really liked it and got exposed to something new. I was very happy the dance went so well.

So I hope this kinda qualifies for this thread!! :)
 
i was dancing with one of my favorite follows for about 8 songs consecutively non-stop.
That should be a record!!! :)

Didn't you get evil eye from other followers ? :p


iI was literally exhausting my entire repertoire. I needed to change things up. That's when I decided to stop dancing on a single axis. This is something i've experimented with in the past, but could never really execute properly, until last night. I took my partner in close, shortened my steps, and just kept rotating my line of dance. The results were fantastic. It felt incredibly smooth and flowy. The best example I can find that demonstrates this type of dancing is Milton Cobo, who looks like he is constantly moving his partner on a different axis by a few degrees. I would love to find more video examples of this type of flowy On2 dancing since Milton has very few videos of himself social dancing.
Not sure what you mean by rotating your line of dance do you mean changing the direction of slot, say if you were dancing north-south like this with the follower " | " then few bars latter you would go like this " / "or like this " \ " or" ---"?. I know how Milton dances. He usually dances in a slot. If you are referring to changing the direction of the slow, I will do it sometimes out of necessity (wild couple dancing around or new people entering the dance floor) or by design if I have enough floor space.
 
I think they should start designing classes around follows, right now it feels like all salsa classes are designed to be lead centric and the follows are just there as practice dummies.
When I watch most salsa classes on partnering, I always wonder what's there in for the follower.

Recently I took a partner class (not in Salsa) after a long time. It was billed as an advance class and most of the ladies were struggling with the lead. And 80% were anticipating.
 
@Offbeat ...

I dont know if you guys would consider this to be of value for followers, but our teacher usually tries (in partner group classes) to work things in like proper tension, frame, avoidance of anticipation, etc ... and she does it by always giving the leads multiple things to do to the follows such that they have to work on those concepts for the lead to work, and they cant anticipate since the leader could do one of two or three different things.

Maybe thats commonly done in partner classes, but it seems to help our follows. You know ... stuff where correctly matching tension is the difference to correctly following whether something is a loop/hairbrush or a turn or something else. Or maybe the lead will check you at a certain point or maybe not. Or maybe a certain lead will be a fake-out for something else. Etc. So she tries to build into what they do the need to really feel what the lead is. Sometimes we even do stuff like having both leads and follows take turns or doing things like close their eyes and use their frame to feel where someone is taking them.

Of course our group partner classes are more beginner and improver level. Our dance pool is small so we dont really have advanced folks.
 
@Offbeat ...

To be clear I know you guys know all this stuff but surely there can be benefit to followers in partner classes at more advanced levels? Or maybe its late and I mistakenly over-focused on one sentence ... The one about wondering whats in it for a follower. :)

/I must be tired :)
 
@Offbeat ...

To be clear I know you guys know all this stuff but surely there can be benefit to followers in partner classes at more advanced levels? Or maybe its late and I mistakenly over-focused on one sentence ... The one about wondering whats in it for a follower. :)

/I must be tired :)
My comment was in general salsa context from what I seen. In other dance forms like Tango and WCS, there a lot of attention is also paid to the follower. But in general salsa partnering, I don't see too much emphasis placed on follower. Hence my comment. The main purpose of the class is teaching a pattern, which is lead centric.
 
Not sure what you mean by rotating your line of dance do you mean changing the direction of slot, say if you were dancing north-south like this with the follower " | " then few bars latter you would go like this " / "or like this " \ " or" ---"
Yes that is exactly what I mean. Generally, he does dance in a slot, but in the videos i've seen him in, he changes the direction a lot. It gives off the illusion that he is dancing in a circular way. Of course, it helps that he is flowing like water.
 
My comment was in general salsa context from what I seen. In other dance forms like Tango and WCS, there a lot of attention is also paid to the follower. But in general salsa partnering, I don't see too much emphasis placed on follower. Hence my comment. The main purpose of the class is teaching a pattern, which is lead centric.
But I am not saying that classes should include some stuff that is for the ladies, and I am not saying that things should be 50/50.

I am saying that a majority of the stuff should be focused on the follow enjoying the lesson and wanting to come back.

I'm saying sround 70% follow and 30% lead, not just throwing a few follow techniques in with a lead centric pattern.
 
@Offbeat ...

To be clear I know you guys know all this stuff but surely there can be benefit to followers in partner classes at more advanced levels? Or maybe its late and I mistakenly over-focused on one sentence ... The one about wondering whats in it for a follower. :)

/I must be tired :)
In my (3+ years) experience, most intermediate/advanced salsa partnerwork classes are focused on the leads and of very little use to follows. This is especially the case at congresses, where partnerwork classes are a complete waste of time for follows as the instructors are trying to teach a "fancy" pattern in an hour so the focus is 100% on the leads. I am completely puzzled as to why any follows attend these congress partnerwork classes.

I've taken partnerwork classes with a variety of teachers and so far have found only one whose classes actually teach follows following technique and who points out more subtle following issues/mistakes that intermediate/advanced follows can benefit from. Everything I have learned about following (that I did not learn on my own) has been from him. I have been so disappointed in most other parterwork classes that I have long stopped looking. At least it makes it easy to choose between congress class options. :p
 
Last edited:
In my (3+ years) experience, most intermediate/advanced salsa partnerwork classes are focused on the leads and of very little use to follows. This is especially the case at congresses, where partnerwork classes are a complete waste of time for follows as the instructors are trying to teach a "fancy" pattern in an hour so the focus is 100% on the leads. I am completely puzzled as to why any follows attend these congress partnerwork classes.

I've taken partnerwork classes with a variety of teachers and so far have found only one whose classes actually teach follows following technique and who points out more subtle following issues/mistakes that intermediate/advanced follows can benefit from. Everything I have learned about following (that I did not learn on my own) has been from him. I have been so disappointed in most other parterwork classes that I have long stopped looking. At least it makes it easy to choose between congress class options. :p
And when the girls stop going to the classes, I stop going to the classes.

I hope they all go out of business and have to go get a job at Walmart.
 
When I watch most salsa classes on partnering, I always wonder what's there in for the follower.

Recently I took a partner class (not in Salsa) after a long time. It was billed as an advance class and most of the ladies were struggling with the lead. And 80% were anticipating.
That's one of the reasons I teach with a partner. Beneficial to all. I rotate through the leads and the follows rotate through my partner... Lots of details get addressed and corrected.
 
Happy New Year everyone!

I welcomed 2015 at a salsa party in my hometown in Romania, they say what you do during the first few hours of the new year will be what you'll do a lot of in the new year so... :D

This was also my first salsa night in Europe. A local salsa school rented out a restaurant with a great dance floor for their students and their friends to spend new year's eve (what a great idea!). So even though it wasn't a 'pure' salsa party as there were plenty of nondancers who were there to accompany their partner, friends, etc, there were enough dancers to fill the dance floor all night (plus we danced lots of Romanian folk music too :)).

I had a GREAT time. :) I was really curious what the dancing would be like in Romania/my town and I was a little anxious that I'd be disappointed in my first ever Romanian salsa night, both in terms of the music and the dancing (you guys know I'm pretty picky :p). Not only was the music awesome :), but pretty much all my dances were great and even though it seems that shines and 'playing' are quite uncommon here, I found a guy who immediately started responding to my play with lots of playful moves of his own (we danced 10+ times as a result :)) and most of the other guys seemed to enjoy the heavy doses of 'New York funk' I threw their way :). (Except one who couldn't handle my footwork descarga to a heavy people percussion solo and actually joked at me to stop so he could do partnerwork, definitely a first :p.

Oh and while, as I expected, pretty much everyone dances on1, I did find a couple guys who danced on2, and one of them had really nice on2 rhythm and timing, I felt like I was back in NY when I danced with him. :)

Really excited to have 'broken the ice' in the Romanian salsa scene with such a nice night :)
 
...Not only was the music awesome :), but pretty much all my dances were great and even though it seems that shines and 'playing' are quite uncommon here, I found a guy who immediately started responding to my play with lots of playful moves of his own (we danced 10+ times as a result :)) and most of the other guys seemed to enjoy the heavy doses of 'New York funk' I threw their way...
I don't know if I have ever danced 10+ times with any one person ever, more or less all in one night... I mean, in the entire time I have been dancing, I have probably not danced with any one person that was not my teacher more that 8 times ever... 8 times over some 6 month time frame that I have been actually social dancing...

My mind has been blown...
 
Salsa is so hard on sleep. :) it's interesting how other people think that Riga is hottest salsa city in world, while I'm going to Warsaw or Vilnius or Kaunas. You get used to good things. But this week since I moved back to town has been pretty hot.
 
I had one of those perfect dances last night. The kind that only comes around a couple of times per year. It's often with someone I've never seen before. That was the case last night. I saw her dancing and decided I would ask her. Part of what was unique about the moment was that I didn't feel the least bit intimidated by asking someone who was that good. Not being intimidated is a new plateau for me.
 

Dance Ads