Salsa - My New York Adventure

#21
even though toan might think that its his subjective opinions, when i read it, i might think that it was quite objective actually. he might still disagree with me. thats what i think.
Olam, I simply stated my experience and conclusions drawn from it, I did not talk about my personal likes or dislikes in terms of flavour, styles nor venues. So I guess you can call it objective view of a subjective topic? I have never been good at identifying the line.

Richie, I definitely agree with a lot that you are saying about the culture and heritage, and if I ever move to NYC for a living stint I would definitely indulge more. However, on this particular journey it was more about the social dancing aspect, or more specifically the On2 dancing aspect. So I stuck to the socials (those are listed in the article). The majority of people that I know would go to NYC for the same reason, so for those that are looking to walk the same type of path, this article documents what I experienced as well as what to expect.
 
#23
Olam, I simply stated my experience and conclusions drawn from it, I did not talk about my personal likes or dislikes in terms of flavour, styles nor venues. So I guess you can call it objective view of a subjective topic? I have never been good at identifying the line.

Richie, I definitely agree with a lot that you are saying about the culture and heritage, and if I ever move to NYC for a living stint I would definitely indulge more. However, on this particular journey it was more about the social dancing aspect, or more specifically the On2 dancing aspect. So I stuck to the socials (those are listed in the article). The majority of people that I know would go to NYC for the same reason, so for those that are looking to walk the same type of path, this article documents what I experienced as well as what to expect.
Hi Toan,

I will definitely take time to read the article before going any further. Although you've given me an idea of what your insight revolved around. I have, somewhat, the same opinion as you do about the "On2" scene in NY. Although I would say that my take is probably a bit more 'critical' than yours... :)

Richie
 
#26
This article isn't there to tell people not to go, as I state that people should go and try for themselves, but I do believe that the mass hysteria around NYC is not called for. The majority of people that know who made the trip to NYC believing that this is Mecca have been bitterly disappointed.
No, some of us become obnoxious fan-boys who talk about it in cult-like fashion to anyone who will listen.:D And I do refer to it as 'Salsa Mecca' and practice On2 basics facing East 5 times a day.:cool:
 
#27
You need to improve your stamina :p
ahh come on, dont be mad at me just because i posted that article. why is it that hard to hear other peoples opinions?
remember, i supported you when you posted your reviews about london to that fb group and when admins removed that i complained.
 
#29
ahh come on, dont be mad at me just because i posted that article. why is it that hard to hear other peoples opinions?
remember, i supported you when you posted your reviews about london to that fb group and when admins removed that i complained.
I'm not mad, I just like dancing cha-cha. :)
 
#33
Maybe I should read the article as the answer might be there, but what scene does he consider to have a higher standard of "Salsa" culture? You're saying he feels London does?

Sabrosura, as you already know, I'm no fan of the "social" or the following venues (Cache, Taj & Iguana) because, for me, its like walking into a Congreso. Which I also am no fan of. Mind you, I have many friends in the UK and I'm aware of there being a scene there. But they are more of the music loving type and have professed the scene to be dominated by the dance zombies that are widely visible in most other scenes around the world. One thing NYC has in common with scenes in latin america (which scenes in europe, asia and even cities across the USA don't have) is a segment that is distinct from the strictly "dance" oriented culture. Whether one thinks its a good thing or not, the point is that we have options in NYC. I don't HAVE to like Taj, Cache, or frequent the socials to get my Salsa fix. There is so much more going on throughout the tri-state area. While I don't live in the UK, my pals who reside there would opt to travel and experience the culture here (in NYC) than they would in London, for their own reasons. Whatever it is specifically they're into, London does not offer it as much perhaps. I guess it would all depend on what one is into. If you don't really care about seeing a mural of Celia Cruz on a wall or hanging out at what's called a 'casita' while drinking beers [for free], while local folks are playing percussion [including elderly women playing clave sticks] accompanying the radio or CD or going to Central Park every Sunday to experience 'Rumba' and later hitting a social club in spanish harlem to experience a 'Bembe', then I don't think it would be air to make an assessment of what a mecca is and what isn't. Esepcially if all you do is frequent a specific segment of it. In NYC, you can rub elbows with the recording artists everyone dances to. There's a luncheonette where one can always find Frankie Vazquez in when he's in town. A restaurant where you'll always see Chocolate Armenteros holding court and sipping his wine. Live music every night of the week in any part of the city. Dancing every single night of the week in any and every part of the city. We have both commercial and public radio broadcasting "Salsa" through the airwaves. We have un-official holiday-like events that are celebrated which garner large audienes annually and without having to resort to mainstream promotion. We have streets named after "Salseros." And that's just the tip of the iceberg.

I realize none of this signifies anything for a lot of people who dance Salsa because that's all they care about.
Exactly.

Really, I think the article is saying that NY is not as good at being like London as London is.
 
#34
Now putting a video of a dancer having a dance without a connection and mocking doesn't prove anything, Leon Rose is not a personal friend, but I think he is one of the finest out there, he may not be to your taste, but there is a reason that he continues to travel around the world to teach and perform.
LR is a pro - surely it's entirely reasonable to look at vids of him dancing. His style of dancing must be a large part of what has made him a success, and (afaik) he achieved his success in London; therefore, his style of dance reflects the tastes of the London/UK scene. Even on the vid posted, there are plenty of comments about how great he is. Like it or not, what he does on that vid is considered wonderful by many.

I've never seen him dance before (that I recall), so if you believe that vid to be atypical, you can always post a more representative example of his social dancing.

Out of interest, why do you consider him 'one of the finest out there'?
 
#35
Hi Toan,

I will definitely take time to read the article before going any further. Although you've given me an idea of what your insight revolved around. I have, somewhat, the same opinion as you do about the "On2" scene in NY. Although I would say that my take is probably a bit more 'critical' than yours... :)

Richie
Hi Richie,
I have heard loads from various experienced dancers about the gradual decline over the past decade or so, I guess all golden era's must come to an end, but I would love to know what your thoughts are.
 
#36
Exactly.

Really, I think the article is saying that NY is not as good at being like London as London is.

Yuca,

I couldn't have said it better myself, I see the comparison of NYC and London as the comparison's of apples and oranges. The same goes for any scene out there as there will be pros and cons, and will fit different people as they see fit.

Sabrosura is a previous article referred to (and forgive this analogy) NYC as Filet Mignon and compared London to a $5 steak. I do not think that is the case and I think it is very unhelpful to propagate this message. I think that I stated the reasons why quite well :)
 
#37
Out of interest, why do you consider him 'one of the finest out there'?
Yuca,

Comparing people based on YouTube clips is never a good way to get a full representation of someone. I have wished for years that my best dancing is caught on camera, but it never has :'(

For me Leon is probably one of the most innovating partner work dancers out there, he has a very interesting move set and some very nice dynamics while dancing. I have heard questions about his lead, but after 4 years of asking him, he would still not lead me.

I also think he latest string of performances are very interesting...
 
#39
Yuca,

I couldn't have said it better myself, I see the comparison of NYC and London as the comparison's of apples and oranges. The same goes for any scene out there as there will be pros and cons, and will fit different people as they see fit.

Sabrosura is a previous article referred to (and forgive this analogy) NYC as Filet Mignon and compared London to a $5 steak. I do not think that is the case and I think it is very unhelpful to propagate this message. I think that I stated the reasons why quite well :)
Here's how you concluded the article on your blog:

'So after visiting the motherland for On2, I have come to the conclusion that home is where the heart is. I have friends, a community and my favourite Salsa dancers in London, so I will love to dance in London more than any other city in the world. What NYC offers is a gathering place for great dancers from around the US and the globe as well as a new set of exceptional dancers that I have not danced with.

I will always say that you should experience as much of life as they can and to try new things is to broaden your horizons. However, for those out there that believes and propagate the message that NYC is the ultimate dance spot, but at this moment in time, I would have to personally disagree.'

Tbh, what you have written is a bit ambiguous. In the first para above, you state you prefer to dance in London because you are familiar with the scene there. Fair enough, but in the 2nd para you state NY is 'not the ultimate dance spot'. You may well be right, but I don't think you have really explained why it is not the ultimate dance spot - surely that is a separate matter to your preference for being where you have familiarity with the scene?
 
#40
Sabrosura is a previous article referred to (and forgive this analogy) NYC as Filet Mignon and compared London to a $5 steak. I do not think that is the case and I think it is very unhelpful to propagate this message. I think that I stated the reasons why quite well :)
I don't recall seeing that article. I prefer seafood to meat. :)
 

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