Salsa > on2 styles comparison. Which is the most spread one? Where?

Discussion in 'Salsa' started by salsa-surfer, Sep 4, 2003.

  1. salsa-surfer

    salsa-surfer New Member

    People, as myself, wanting to learn dancing/breaking "on2" are confronted with the question:
    Which of the different "on2" styles, espacially regarding the different footwork, shall i learn?

    That's why I have some questions about "on2" styles:

    1. Are there only 2 "on2" styles: Palladium/power2 and Eddie Torres Style?

    2. Instructors/Dancers like Razzmtazz, Addie Rodriguez, Raul Avila or Ron&Bettina Rosario apparently does not dance/teach the style of Eddie Torres.
    Which style ist theirs? How do they call it?

    2. Which of the "on2" styles ist the most spread one in NY or other parts of the US or other parts of the world.

    3. How do people dancing different "on2" styles manage to dance with each other? Or do they not dance with each other at all because of their "faith"?

    Thanks a lot in advance!
  2. youngsta

    youngsta Active Member

    I'll tell you my experience. I can dance NY2 (Eddie Torres) and have rarely come across a NY dancer that couldn't follow it. All my friends in LA dance NY2 also, so if I was to say which one to start with that would be it.

    BUT...If possible and motivated I'd learn as many as I could. Right now I dance on1 and NY2. It just gives you access to more dance partners.

    You can't dance with each other with different styles. The lead decides what they'll be dancing and both will use that timing. Otherwise you have a trainwreck in the making.
  3. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    The NY instructors who don't teach Eddie Torres Style on2 teach Power2. The 2,3,4 6,7,8 count... It's still called on2 but specifically power2.

    Usually if you can dance Eddie Torres on2, you'll should have no problem switching a count and dancing power2, for the more expirienced dancers. I dance both on2 and power2... When dancing with older folks, most dance power2, I use their timing, otherwise I use Eddie Torres. I started dancing power2, then switched to Eddie's when I started going for classes, it is the cool thing to do around here.

    Eddie Torres on2 and Power2 dancers "usually" have no problems leading and following each other. However, depending on the dancers sometimes it feels as if one dancer, is either a beat ahead or a beat behind the other. I guess here in NY City there are so many dancers who dance Eddie's style and power2 that a lot of people have pretty much gotten used to each other. The reason why it seems as if there aren't "big" problems is because the major body movements are done on the 2. So all the goodies always wait until the 2 at which time both dancers are ready, and expecting the next move. I would have to say that from my expirience there aren't major bumers when both dancers dance on different on2 counts because after a few seconds dancers have usually adjusted to each other. Let me clarify that I'm speaking of those dancers who have a mastery of the dance and counts.

    I don't know of any other on2 styles besides Eddie's and power2.

    It seems like Eddie's style is limited to NY City. Yes, it has started to grow world wide but I'm willing to bet that in PR alone there are more power2 dancers than Eddie's on2 in NY City. Some ballroom dancers, as is my understanding, dance power2 as well. Power2, in my opinion, is more popular around the world, but in NY city it is Eddie Torre's style which rules.

    There are Dancers who very well will not dance with anyone who dances a different style than them... There are plenty to go around. That really is a problem with the person and not the styles. Some times some people are learing a count and don't want to be messed up by being introduced to another count....
  4. youngsta

    youngsta Active Member

    Not in my experience. It's huge in LA right now and growing steadily here in Denver where I'm at.
  5. salsarhythms

    salsarhythms New Member

    Yea Eddie's style is getting bigger...however, I think power2 is
    more popular on a bigger scale...
  6. salsa-surfer

    salsa-surfer New Member

    Thanks for your instructive answers!

    Now I'm a bit more comfortable about learning "on2".

    What do you think about the following ideas of Razzmtazz about the 2 styles:

    I think it a bit "provocative" and pretty ignorant.

    As though accentuating something would suppose pausing anything before.
    It's wrong, not only with dancing.
  7. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    Yes, indeed, it is growing.. However, huge is a relative word. One man's ocean is another man's river. Not only is Eddie's style growing in LA, Denver, but also Toronto, Miami, DC, and Japan.
  8. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    I haven't read the article but I'm too familiar with the arguments between palladium style, and Eddies style. It really is all a matter of opinion, it is what you like best. To RazzMTazz, the purity of the original on2 style was messed up by Eddie. A stance largely shared by salsa old timers. I used to share the same view until I realized that the best way to dance is what each individual finds best for them. Not what someone thinks is the best for me.

    In RazzMTazz further expanding his thoughts only leads him to weak arguments an egotistical display of his persona. There are a bunch of tastes that can be added to salsa. There is colombian salsa, cuban salsa, Rican salsa, Newyorikan salsa, romantic salsa, salsa duran, etc. So why can't there be multiple ways to dance salsa as well? No matter how perfect a style seems to someone, there is always room for critique, or a bombardment towards the short comings each dance style might have. His views not only apply to him but a great deal of people who believe their way is the way it ought to be, neglecting that because you like something it doesn't mean that I will like it. Hence, the huge war like attitude between on1 and on2 dancers. MY WAY IS THE ONLY WAY. hehehe

    Sounds like the inquisition all over again.
  9. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    For salsa, just like anything else in life, I run for the hills whenever I hear "the only way to...."

    There may, naturally, be ways "not to" – but there are also always multiple ways "to."
  10. joaoluissantos

    joaoluissantos New Member


    This post is a little bit old but I would like to pose some questions regarding the on2 and power 2 way of dancing.

    1-I was told that the puerto rican style is very much like the NY on2 style, both danced on2 Eddie Torres Style. So, What are the major differences between these styles?

    2-The Puerto Ricans in Puerto Rico dance the same way the Puerto Ricans in NY?

    3-I had a workshop on2 with a Puerto Rican that currently lives in Madrid, Spain, and when doing line dances he always step with the right foot forward on 1, left foot more forward on 2, backward on 3 with the right foot ... but besides that, I realized that he did the same thing when dancing socially in couple (the workshop was only about footwork). Is this charachteristic of puerto rican style? (I read in that when dancing in couple, usually the on2 NY dancer steps backward with the left foot on beat 1, more backward with the right foot in beat 2...)

    4-Why is the power 2 called palladium style? I thought in the 50's mambo was danced eddie torres way...Eddie Torres way is post-mambo craze and during the 50's the mambo was danced like the power 2?

    Well, I think that's all for now. Thanks,

  11. Salsero_AT

    Salsero_AT New Member

    I just read the Razzmtazz article and just right now i am quite angry. :evil:
    First of all i do not like the "i am the best and the others are stupid" style of it and secondly i just do not understand their justification that people who dance power2 dance better than people who dance on 1. As far as i have understood power2 is just on1 starting at the second beat. So what is the difference in terms of dancing ? You just start a beat later, so you do EXACTLY the same as you would do if you would dance on1 (i do not mean Eddie Torres on2). Or have i misunderstood power2 ?
    Ah, now i am better.. :)
  12. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    Hello João,
    1- If you are dancing salsa as per the mambo, back and forth basic step, then all styles look pretty much the same. But Rican style is danced on the 2,3,4 not as in Eddies 1,2,3... Eddie's style as compared to the rican style tends to look a bit stiffer. The reason is that in eddie's style we travel over the 4 beat on way to hitting the 1, hence, no time for much hip motion as opposed to being stopped on the 4 where you can 'wiggle it'.

    Rican style, per se, isn't a difference in the dance steps but body motion. Ricans as a community have a given 'cultural' movement that translates to their dancing. Nothing really to do with steps taken or combinations done. A rican tends to bend forward somewhat, they slide their feet on the ground instead of steping, they use a cumbia like step, a circular motion of the hands almost all the time, they do a foot kick on the 4 and 8, and their hip movement is greater than that of eddie's style. Now, that description is a 'cultural' movement, if go to PR and watch those who haven't taken salsa classes, they'll move to latin beats close to that, when they take classes then the movements change but it still is apparent if you know what to look for. Trained salsa dancers in PR dance the power2 not Eddie's on2. By cultural I mean an unconscious movement that is dominant in all people from a given culture, whether done on purpose or not.

    2- Yes and No, Old school ricans dance just like the ricans in PR. Old schoolers still have that PR flavor while Newyoricans have more of a blend of styles. Newyorican new school Dancers dance like New Yorkers, they'll stand out like a sore thumb if they are to dance in Puerto Rico. When I was there last year, everyone, wherever I went knew I didn't learn to dance in PR. I was dancing Eddie's style. New Yorkers move briskier, more preceise, lots of more combinations and lots of solos. PR trained dancers tend to do a lot less solo shines, and dance far sexiers than New Yorkers, they place a greater emphasis on sensual dancing as opposed to the high flying style Eddie is known for.

    3- Nope that isn't Puerto Rican style, that sounds like the footwork for Ladies on Eddies style. Usually when teaching shines using Eddie's style we do footwork to the Ladies count.

    4- No Eddie's style wasn't danced at the Palladium, hence why it is called Eddie's on2 style and not palladium/power2 style. Eddie came up with that new form of stepping way after the palladium. Eddie Torres' style is known as post palladium style. During the 50's those who danced mambo on2 danced it to Son Montuno foot work. Mambo was first danced on1 until dancers realized that it could be done on2 as per son montuno style.

    Hope that helps João
  13. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    Nope, you pretty much got it. The problem really isn't what style is better but how much control a person's EGO needs to have to feel better about what they do.
  14. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member


    P.S. I'd be open to being persuaded that a given style fits a particular song better (although you'd still have to convince me of that), but beyond that it's just pure ego.
  15. salsa-surfer

    salsa-surfer New Member


    I've no doubt this is the case, and you can even have your personal opinion on which song fits better which style of dancing.

    You can even go still further and divide a song in parts and say that some part of a song fits better one style and another part a different style.
    It's all possible with music, there is no problem incorporating different rhythm styles or changing the tempo in one piece of music as it is possible to merge different styles of dancing on one piece of music in a smoothe way. Why should it not be...?

    Some days ago i downloaded a video-clip with the Brasilian Alex da Silva(the Winner of the Mayan World Salsa Competition2002) with his performance at the Brisbane Australian Salsa Expo last year. The guy who put it for download says:

    I don't know if Alex has similar ideas subcontiously or deliberately but the fact is he apparently does not bother much about sticking or at least stepping to a specific style. And, just take a look at the clip, they break the barriers and it surely does not make their dancing look worse. Even if some could feel uncomfortable looking at that sort of dancing as we sometimes feel uncomfortable listening to a piece of (persian/chinese) music as long as we get a bit more acquainted with it and it stops producing a sort of "dissonance" in our ears beacuse of a "strange" scale or rhythm.
  16. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    Just my thoughts. I have a friend that knows a 100 moves, when we go to places where noone knows that the one rule in salsa is to dance with, or to the music, he goes off with his partner throwing each other around and yes, the moves look Good, but do they follow any kind of patern that the music is throwing at them? No, hence he looks like he has no purpose but to show what he can do at the expense of destroying a song. They break barries too to songs that themselves have limits. How nice does a wild man look to a wild song? Good, if you don't know that every beat in the song is following a given something. I saw the clip first with out sound, and thought it was nice, then with sound, and ended up with My sister after 3 classes can make things look nice but when put together with the music the nices goes away because she thinks that the music follows no pattern. She is all over the place, anyone can be taught how to do a choreography, the next level comes when you can follow what the song itself follows. A beat!

    If not one instrument goes off beat then why should the dancer? To me that is 1- Not knowing the beat or 2- thinking you are above the music. I used to dance just like him when I didn't know that salsa followed a clave pattern. I just jumped around like a crazed man on drugs and called it free styling...

    Pre-meditated or not it looks like it is harder for them to follow a pattern than actually not follow one. I have seen countless performers do the same or above and yet do it within the music...
  17. salsaForfun

    salsaForfun New Member

    I couldn't get the file downloaded. Can u send it to me at
  18. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    Imma try sending it now, 2PM eastern time, but the file is over 4Meg, I don't know if my email system allows to send files bigger than 2Meg outside the firewall. Or that your email system allows for such in comming case. I guess we'll find out....
  19. borikensalsero

    borikensalsero Moderator

    Sorry, I couldn't send it, the file exceeds the fixed limit. :cry:
  20. joaoluissantos

    joaoluissantos New Member


    Thanks for your answer, borikensalsero. It was very elucidative. Just want to ask you a final question regarding the NY and Puerto Rican Style. You told that in Puerto Rico de majority of puerto ricans dance power 2 style, right? And in NY, it's the same or it's more eddie torres style?

    About Mr. Razz'M'Tazz article, I would like to know if anyone knows anything about the cuban guaracha, because he says:

    I don't agree with the statement that if you dance 1,2,3-5,6,7 you are not dancing salsa, but I would like to know if guaracha is danced on1 and if somehow it influenced dancing salsa on1.

    Another question, cuban salsa is danced on1. Why don't cubans dance on2, like son montuno is danced? Is it because the cuban salsa/timba accentuates more the 1? (The drum pattern is a little bit different from the tum-tum...pá!? or maybe another instrument...)

    João Santos

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