Salsa > Do you think beginners know what a good lead is?

Discussion in 'Salsa' started by Backstreet, Sep 25, 2005.

  1. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    saludas your responses are often both personally and generally judgmental and insulting...and it is not a personal attack for me to make that observation...I can only answer for my responses to you not pebble's..but I can honestly say that I don't appreciate your constant degrading remarks about pro am about beginners and abouts how pros treat them... it is maddening and fairly opens you up to the hostility that you are sensing....it is not personal...I don't know you and wouldn't begin to judge why you take the perspective that you do ...if only you would be civil enough to return that favor whenever a pro am subject comes up....
     
  2. clave

    clave New Member

    You're either being intentionally difficult or you honestly have never followed and so don't know what you're writing about. Bad leads feel: weak; hesitant; limp; confusing; disinterested; forced; or various combinations thereof. Trying to follow in class after two years of learning to lead was a real eye-opener for me, and I feel that it improved my leading quite a bit. If I as a follow have to think about what he wants me to do it's a bad lead. A good, strong lead doesn't leave you any options (unless he wants to give you options), you can just relax into it.

    Your writings indicate that you're mostly exposed to the ballroom world, which makes me wonder if you've ever seen a limber 16 years old girl who starts studying LA salsa five nights a week? Dude, you have no idea! Fake tan my tired a... :?
     
  3. Matrix

    Matrix New Member

    Beginners have absolutely NO IDEA of what a "good lead" is...

    Just today I was having a talk with a salsera friend and we were talking about how you evolve as a dancer and what was good once, is not good anymore 3-6 months later (at least in L.A., where dancers climb up to higher dancing levels waaaay faster than in any other city, as far as Salsa is concerned). She mentioned how she came from Dallas (she's originally from there) and she used to like this one guy's lead a lot. He was "her favorite," as she expressed it in her own words. But after dancing in L.A. for about 1 1/2 years, when she went back, she realized how aweful he really was... he was offbeat all the time, was very rough, would pull at her, yank her arms, etc, etc, etc. BEGINNERS SIMPLY DO NOT KNOW ANY BETTER!! It is that simple.
     
  4. saludas

    saludas New Member

    Maybe, but I still think that doing salsa for a short time compares to any other technique after a short time - compared to others in the scene, she/he might be the best, but compared to dancers overall, I'm afraid that it really does take a longer time than you think to really dance well. Really.
     
  5. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I really found claves' post to be a bit hostile...even though I myself have taken issue with you...and I do agree with you on this one...we can all find an arena in which we are the best....you just have to ask yourself ...am I in a fish bowl or an ocean here?
     
  6. Sagitta

    Sagitta Well-Known Member

    I agree with the fish bowl vs ocean comment. :)
     
  7. Big10

    Big10 Member

    Like several other people have already said in this thread, beginning followers can give you accurate feedback only on what has felt like a "good lead" for them. Beginners won't be able to distinguish who would be a "good lead" for a higher level follower.

    Without getting too bogged down in the abstract concept of what is truly a "good lead" (including the ability to adjust to different level followers), I think that all we can say for certain is that good leader will feel good to a beginner, but that a bad leader probably will feel bad to a beginner.
     
  8. clave

    clave New Member

    No offense meant. 'twas a tongue-in-cheek comment about the inexplicable need the ballrom crowd seems to have for fake tanning. The particular young lady I had in mind when writing the above swims in the ocean as far the salsa universe goes, she performed at the LA congress this year, and I believe last month was the first anniversary of her first salsa lesson ever. Obviously, this person was far from a couch potato before embarking on this adventure. My point being, talents and motivations differ greatly; sorting people into the "below 2-3 years" and "above 2-3 years" categories makes you sound, well, envious of those extraordinary individuals who simply "get it".
     
  9. africana

    africana New Member

    I think this is my favorite response so far! sums it up well

    it also allows for the fact that most dancers have "good" and "bad" qualities (perhaps "desirable" and "less desirable" qualities sounds better), and there's always room for getting "better" (or "worse" ;) )
     
  10. saludas

    saludas New Member

    This works for me EXCEPT that bad leads always contain much more force and rough, 'unfinished' movement. Beginners seem to interpret this a good ("He's such a strong lead, I can follow him so easily") and beginners certainly miss the sophisitcation of a good lead. Therefore, with reservations...

    How many of you have heard a newbie social dancer point to a bad social dancer and say "He's really good" or "I follow him so easily"? That's because social dancers tend to feel that what they feel all the time is the 'right' lead, and when they dance with their friends all the time, they all feel 'right'. When you come in and try to do, for instance, a spin without 'stirring the girl' or do timing other than what the beginner knows or understands, then YOU become the 'bad leader'....
     
  11. lynn

    lynn New Member

    as strange as it sounds - that actually makes perfect sense to me. I've always thought that "strong" lead - usually implies force here meant good leading (esp in the context without body contact) - this is simply because i couldn't pick up the subtlety of body leading (or simply b/c i wasn't able to react fast enough thus i didn't think they were "good"). But lately i've felt these kind of leads are way too rough and too forceful - which should be quite apparent as i've suffered several injuries b/c of these "good" leads that i once considered, perhaps it's just my preference for leads have changed (for the better, i hope) or perhaps i'm beginning to able to distinguish what those undesirable characteristics are....
     
  12. saludas

    saludas New Member

    This means you're getting better!
     
  13. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I wasn't offended :wink: as for fake tanning...I hate the stuff and dont want to get my gowns yucky...I tan the dangerous way...and I do it for non ballroom reasons...though I do see that when someone is really light they can look very pasty and sick under bright lights...beyond that, I don't really get it either...I tan b/c it feels good on my back, cheers me up in the winter and since make up breaks me out I like to tan so I don't have to wear much...plus I tan darkly and easily even though I'm blonde so it looks good...no lectures please...I work for hospice I know the deal
     
  14. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    funny b/c that is similar to what happened to me at the party...i asked this instructor to dance b/c I remebered what a good tango we did when I was first strating out ...then I realized this weekend that it was really quite average...no sharp movements, no tick , no curving, no cbm etc...and I just thought OMG I've passed him up...though he could have thought he needed to dance down...glad I didn't pick him for an instructor...thank goodness my boss knew everyone there and told me who to dance with
     
  15. lynn

    lynn New Member

    :shock: :shock:

    The same thing happened to me!! There's one instructor that i thought was just wonderful several months ago danced with me last week and i thought of him as - well, a good lead, but honestly, not spetacular either - it could very well be that he's dancing down for me but needless to say i was a little disappointed.....
     
  16. clave

    clave New Member

    Hey you two, don't get all snooty now! :lol:
    Yes, you are getting better, but these guys are still good leads, even if they'll never be great leads. Look at it this way: if you took a random sample of a hundred people off the street and this guy was among them, how many others do you think would be better dancers? Yup, ZERO!
    Be nice to those you left in the dust.
     
  17. lynn

    lynn New Member

    yikes, i hope that didn't come across as insulting :oops: - he was a good lead, there was no question about it. It just didn't feel so "magical" this time around - maybe just b/c he treated me as a "student" and simply danced down so i'm aware of what he's doing.
     
  18. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    ya know I knew the minute I typed it that it would only be a heart beat before some guy would pipe in and take us to the wood shed :wink: truly I don't mean it to be snooty and he is still a pleasure to dance with just not as much a pleasure as when I knew nothing...that's all...and I know that the only reason I know it now is hard work and daily practice and a good coach ...and truly I am there (studio)more than he is nowadays....its not his main gig...he is a great guy with wonderful charisma and tons of fun...I just got good enough to learn something that's all...don't get me wrong he's still mighty fine
     
  19. Kindra

    Kindra New Member

    Agree 100%. And of course...as beginners evolve, so does their preference for a certain lead. (which has probably already been said)
     
  20. Leah

    Leah New Member

    nice pic kindra! (and i miss heather too :' ( you chopped her off, LOL)
     

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