Dancing for the looks

A counter example how not to do it, would be Terry . (This video just happened to be next in the auto list - they approximately have the same clicks.) That guy is just vain - and hot.
That video contains one of the greatest displays of musicality caught on video and I watch it precisely for that reason. Vain or not, we can say that about many dancers, including Oliver. I have blasted Terry in the past for his antics, but I still enjoy watching his videos and apparently many people enjoy dancing with him (and many don't). Nothing new when you put in the volume that he does.
And precisely that is, why it is a good counter example. Because it stands for such a different approach to (partner) dancing.
Terry is dancing with the music to some girl, Oliver is dancing with Alien to some music. It does not say a word about their skill and how much a partner who is into that kind of behavior likes it, it just describes a mentality. One I am - in Terry's case - simply disgusted by.

And those videos were examples for Smej who is surely missing a certain amount of cockiness.
MrR, you know the girl in the video is Terry's girlfriend right? I agree that he dances more to the music than with his partner, but I speculate that he allows himself to go crazy with the solo dancing during the heavy percussion part precisely because it's his gf (who seems rather amused by the whole thing).

Not a huge Terry fan either, but like Chris I've probably watched that video more than any other salsa video for the same reasons. Even if it's totally disconnected from his partner, I still find myself grinning at the quadruple solo spin that matches the crescendo at

Edit: at 5:37, apparently the editor doesn't do youtube time tags.
No matter who she is in reality. In THAT video she is an exchangeable doll. If you want a discussion about vainness and the social role and psychology of girlfriends and groupies in the professional dancer (and all other star) communities, please make another thread.

This one was about Smej wanting to know how we go along to dance with girls that seem to have the capability and mentality to take a more active role in a dance, that is build more about positions (my interpretation) - which he assumed to be about the looks.
And I took Oliver and Alien as an example of how it can be approached. Terry was just a counter indicator that happened to cross my path, so don't waste this threat for that please.


Son Montuno
I'm not a fan of Terry, which I pointed out several times. But this video is definitively among a few of his videos that I like. It has nice flow and energy in connection with music, very little abrupt changes of partner's direction and the follower looks quite comfortable in that kind of dancing. Almost all of his dances I watched on the congress this winter were nowhere near this, he was shifting them to various directions 2 times per second on average and they were mostly totally lost ... Hard to say was it because of the lack of followers' skills or his approach to dance changed since this video was recorded back in 2013 ... but well, if someone wants to dance with a superstar, she/he has to be prepared for his/her way of dancing, so is it only his fault if it doesn't work ? I think not

Didn't get the sentence about exchangeable doll though
As an addendum to this, i recently had dances where I felt people wanting fo connect to the music in solo work moreso than in partnerwork. My personal philosophy is to allow those who can express themselves freedom to shine in solo work, but not for the whole song.

This is still primarily a partner dance and closed position should not be relegated as subordinate to individual solo work. Striking a balance between freedom to express your own unique style while still remaining connected to your partner is key.
I personally stopped leading follows to hit ques in the music.

Instead - I lead them in a way that leaves room to...dancing. So they have the freedom to express themselves whenever and however they feel like.

We are still connected, and there is still constant communication, though - I can even follow her, if she is doing anything interesting.
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