Salsa > 2005 Club Mayan Salsa Professional Competition

Discussion in 'Salsa' started by XtremeSalsa, Apr 24, 2005.


Who Will Win the $5K @ the Mayan?

  1. Christian Olviedo

  2. Liz Lira

    0 vote(s)
  3. Alex DaSilva

    0 vote(s)
  4. Rony Medrano

    0 vote(s)
  5. Rico Bravo

    0 vote(s)
  6. Abel Pena

    0 vote(s)
  1. XtremeSalsa

    XtremeSalsa New Member

    1st off, let me say that this years comeptition is the BEST that the Mayan has ever hosted. This year, the BEST of the BEST have decided to come out and compete for the $5,000 purse. Last night (4/23/05) was the Semi-final round, and believe me, it was the night that SEPERATED the BIG DOGS from the RUNTS. 13 couples were on the card last night and only 6 would Advance. Of the 13 couples, ALL of the BIG NAMES that you would ASSOCIATE with LA Style Salsa were present; Alex DaSilva, Cristian Oviedo, Rico Bravo, Liz Lira, Rony Medrano/Dinora, and Abel Pena. The thought of LA style salsa without any of these 7, means that you HAVE NO IDEA about SALSA.

    With the exception of 1 couple, all the routines were very entertaining and well suited for the round. The first 2 couples had a bit of trouble with the lack of grip on the stage. Before the competition I was dancing where the couples would perform and it did feel slicker than usual. This problem was the most noticble in Alex DaSilva's routine. He gave his partner, Ruby Karen, a strong snap/open break in which she lost her footing, almost causing her to fall. They were a little unerved, but made a very strong recovery. Their routine was packed with stunts, poses, and acrobatics. Other than Alex DaSilva and his partner, everyone seemed to manage with the floor quite well. Before DaSilva, were Rony Medrano and his partner of 10 year, Dinora.

    They had a very high energetic routine, which if memory serves me correct, they used most it from last year's competition. They began strong and finished strong. Dinora did her signature "God Spin", they were on the count, and their stunts were awesome. Liz Lira and her partner, Jose Valencia, followed DaSilva.

    What more can be said about her routine other than, it was Vintage Liz Her partner lacks LA Style, due to, what I think is a strong Ball Room background. They did not have many partnering combos, but what they did have a lot of, was Liz's contortion stretches and poses. Her intro, a "Dirty Dancing" theme was a little on corney side, but they quickly switched. Her signature "Tornado" spin was sharp as usual, but with a twist. As she turned, her partner would throw in a turn of his own, adding diffculty. In the end Liz's routine was very sharp and clean. Next came Christian Oviedo and his partner Melissa.

    They opened up with a Tango theme, which to me was very surprising due to the fact that it is very unlike Cristian. Nevertheless, it was done well. Also, Cristian like to throw in a stunt at the beginning of almost every routine of his. But last night, he decided to wait and throw it in later. Their transitions between songs were a little on the excessive side, but it worked for them. They had great energy and seem to have the most fun. About the only thing that I could say could be done better is his "Windmill". Although last night, that seemed to be the the most POPULAR move. Done the best by none other than DaSilva. Cristian and Melissa, I would say, had the the cleanest and sharpest routine of all. Up next was Rico Bravo.

    This routine was the MOST CREATIVE of all. It was a parody on Alex DaSilva and Johnny Vazquez (If you don't know, FIND OUT!), which, are the two people that inspired him the most. Like Cristian, Rico was full of energy and chemistry. Although his timing wasn't all there, as far as On 1 is concerned, they pulled of a very AMUSING and HUMOROUS routine. I can't wait to see what they come up with for FINALS. Lastly, came Abel Pena and his partner Xiomara.

    It took Abel a couple of years to find the right partner, but man,did he EVER? Xiomara, has great stage presence and compliments Abel Xtremely well. Timing was good, and so were their transitions between songs. I especially loved the use of the "Gasolina" drum-roll during their "Tornado". Although not as flashy and stunt filled like the others, it was more concentrated to the dance form, a lot of good combos. All in all a good performance.

    Well, there you have it. The 6 couples that qualified to FINALS. As I said before, ALL but 1, of the routines were very much PROFESSIONAL CALIBER. The couple that claims to be professional, was the very same couple that attempted to compete at The Granda, in the AMATURE Category, a few weeks before, and still managed to not make the Semi-final round there. Last night they picked the slowest song imaginable and well, frankly put the crowd to sleep.

    After being at both Qualifying and now Semis, I am XTREMELY eager to watch the FINALS. The 6 couples will most definately have to pull out all the STOPS if they want to be #1 and $5,000 richer. But if you ask me, here is MY PREDICTION:

    1. Alex DaSilva/Ruby Karen
    2. Rico Bravo/Diana
    3. Cristian Oviedo/Melissa or Liz Lira/Jose Valencia
  2. Sagitta

    Sagitta Well-Known Member

  3. tj

    tj New Member

    Hey, cool, thanks for the review!

    (I flew in to see last year's finals, but will probably miss this year.)
  4. aragonh

    aragonh New Member

    When is the finals??

    I may pass by to check it out.

    Also, are they showing the video of prelim/semi winners anywhere?

    Also, just a trivia info:

    Dont they do an out-of-state prelims also and the winners also perform in the finals?? has any out-of-state ever placed in the Maya Competition?

    Thanx for the info.
  5. TICA

    TICA New Member

    these are the dates

  6. aragonh

    aragonh New Member

    Nope cant make it. Will be in Chicago that weekend.

    Hopefully they post up a video somewhere to see the results. I didnt like last year winners. It was not the people but the routine. I think it was more acrobatic than salsa.
  7. XtremeSalsa

    XtremeSalsa New Member

    Videos should be up shortly after the finals. Or you can go to the club like at 8pm for the lesson and they usually have the videos of the previous rounds playing on the screens.
  8. Mama Salsera

    Mama Salsera New Member

    That semi finals round was CRAZY! I have to say that Rico & Diana's routine was my favorite, although I think everyone did very well with the exception of that couple Xtreme Salsa was talking about (What were they thinking!?). I think that Alex Da Silva & Ruby Karen will end up with the grand prize. By the way where are all the L.A. Salseros at? Do you guys not have an opinion on the Mayan Competition? It's only the biggest thing in salsa (aside from the LA Salsa Congress) that's going on out here... WAKE UP FOLKS! WHERE YA AT? :D

    By the way Steve, GREAT REVIEW! But then again, what don't u do right? :applause:

    Mama Salsera Cynthia :kitty:
  9. squirrel

    squirrel New Member

    I am not in LA and I am not into the Mayan either...

    Meaning I do not understand why people think routines have to look like acrobatics...

    For Christ's sake, it's dancing, not gymnastics...! It's connecting to the music and the partner not flying and jumping... I prefer the Jack and Jill competitions by far! No choreography, and let's see if you can really lead/follow!

    Sorry, no offence for the flying and jumping fans or practicants... just my 2 cents...
  10. tsb

    tsb Well-Known Member

    my friend kat finished 7th & was actually kinda happy to be done - although a case could be made that she & her partner should have scored higher than alex desilva since his partner slipped amongst the obvious mistakes they made. of course the fact that he teaches at the mayan had nothing to do with it... :roll:
  11. tsb

    tsb Well-Known Member

    i agree, but the reality is that the average audience is more impressed by gymnastics moves & can't appreciate the nuances of connection, etc.
  12. squirrel

    squirrel New Member

    And shouldn't the audience be taught?

    And who started it, btw??? The audience required acrobatics? I doubt it! Dancers introduced acrobatics! The audience responded... they used acrobatics even more! Now IMO they mostly jump and fly... why should that be mistaken for dancing?

    I have many dancers here, in my country, who learn (badly) the moves from the Mayan and use these moves in crowded clubs! And whose fault is it? They think this is the norm there, not the exception!
  13. tsb

    tsb Well-Known Member

    simply put, when you do choreography, people expect to be entertained -not educated; while i categorize myself a social dancer, i have been associated with some performance groups that get paid to provide entertainment. unfortunately, the most 'spectacular' moves that wow crowds don't involve much dancing.

    it's not confined to salsa, btw - you see lots of drops, dips & aerials in swing routines as well. the thing is that you don't see as many 'street' swing dancers - they tend to learn from instructors or other mediums that impart the idea that some moves are dangerous and should not be used in social situations whereas there are a larger percentage of street dancers in salsa who may learn primarily in clubs, etc. who don't get exposed to this idea from any sort of "authority".
  14. squirrel

    squirrel New Member

    Don't get me wrong! I respect the hard work those people had to go through to learn and do properly all those complicated things! The same as I respect gymnasts...

    But dance is much more than a couple doing a neck-drop... :(

    And unfortunately this is the idea propagated... that dancing is indeed just dips, tricks and aerials... :(

    I am desperately trying to tell people dancing is different... this is what I teach my students...
  15. tsb

    tsb Well-Known Member

    i think you missed my point, but i'm going to go to bed.
  16. squirrel

    squirrel New Member

    No I haven't actually... I know the public wants spectacular moves... the more difficult the better...

    I was just trying to say I am not into it!
  17. Lucretia

    Lucretia New Member

    Last years the best "dancers" where found in the Amateur section of the Mayan Contest. There you found happiness, joy, connection...true dance...and not so much acrobatics.

    (Let's hope the videocuts come up soon. I'm so curious....)

  18. hopelessly_addicted

    hopelessly_addicted New Member

    The reason why there's so much acrobatic in competition, could it be because it's so obvious to see? Whereas the feelings/joy you share with your partner when dancing, it's not so obvious to the by-standers... so to stand out, the competitors tend to do outrageous acrobatic moves. I wonder what ways there are to show the true "flava" of salsa to the audience...?
  19. Lucretia

    Lucretia New Member

    But who is judging the the judge decide who is best by looking at the audience?

    No I don't think so. I guess there is a preference for acrobatics also in the mind of the judge. I guess they think that dance can "anybody" learn to do. But acrobatics is so hard that few can do it well keeping the beat.

    I would like the managers of Maya an other dancecompetion to have a discussion of where they are "pushing" the dance by rewarding a special style. Especially Maya competition since all movies are found on-line.

    They will become trendsetters and they will also show anyone what you not should do if you want to be unique.

  20. Lucretia

    Lucretia New Member

    Perhaps this is what happened in the early ages of figure skating (the type where you are two ...don't know the name of it).

    Some people did so much acrobatics that they had to open up a special class for acrobatics and one for dance. In the "icedance" class you are not allowed to lift the lady over the head or throw her away.

    (If anyone can help me with the proper term in English - please welcome)


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