Salsa > Other Dances: do you CARE?

Discussion in 'Salsa' started by africana, Aug 21, 2006.

  1. africana

    africana New Member

    Off shoot of some comments from ballroom/salsa dancers: Re insularity of salser@s

    We've had threads about learning other dances, but now I'm curious to know if salser@s invest as much effort or passion into other dances as they do salsa?

    In words, do you learn those other dances for themselves, or for how they help you with salsa? Which approach is "better"?
    Also do you learn them because you enjoy them? Or because of some other goal like teaching or performing?
    (by the way the best teachers I know are cross-trained)

    For me I started ALL the other dances that I've learned because of salsa: it was the gateway to dance
  2. alemana

    alemana New Member

    it definitely was my gateway as well, but with the added caveat that i'd had moments throughout my life of thinking i "should" be dancing and/or that deep down i "was a dancer" and ought to study or take lessons.

    as a child and young adult i did not have the means to do so. only until i was comfortably employed did the possibility become reality, and it was salsa by combination of accident and temperament, i think.

    accident: i was living in a city where i finally had exposure to latin music and culture, and found myself inextricably drawn to all aspects, especially but not exclusively the music

    accident: had a couple of latin friends in the music biz who took me to a bunch of shows where i lamented i couldn't dance

    accident: was a serious martial artist struggling with chronic knee problems and needing another all-encompassing hobby with plenty of opportunity for in-fighting, jealousy, stylistic disagreement and ego (lol at myself, ha hah)

    temperament: was making a switch from a lifetime of intellectual labor (grad school) to a freer existence where body movement was essential to my daily happiness

    temperament: personality 'click' with my circle of latin friends and their lifestyles

    temperament: a gemini is often pretty good at whatever she tries, but lacks the patience to plod along until she graduates from "pretty good" to "excellent." salsa rewarded me pretty quickly :)
  3. alemana

    alemana New Member

    but yeah, i care about other dances because i'm addicted to moving to music, and because i believe with utter conviction that all the dancing i do is "good for" all my other dancing.

    i mean, i would dance other stuff even if i didn't believe it would specifically help my salsa because I LIKE TO FREAKIN DANCE. but when there's some specific issue i want to work on and other style will help - hell ya.
  4. quixotedlm

    quixotedlm New Member

    i like other dances for themselves, not because they help me with salsa. It is actually the other way around - salsa helps me with other dances. I tried WCS for some time, but all the WCS socials are conflicting with salsa socials, so I'm giving up. I was split between ECS and AT - finally settling on AT since it feels challenging and there is a local milonga on Sundays - which is the only day I'm not going salsa-dancing :D
  5. africana

    africana New Member

    moment of truth

    I just realized something: I get annoyed at people who "dabble" in salsa (including teachers of other dances) without taking the time to really learn about it - especially the music - and appreciate its difficulty in EXACTLY the same way that other dancers get annoyed at people who "dabble" in their dance forms just for fun, without stressing out about learning it fully.

    The thing about salsa is that it's very conducive to 'dabblers' (thanks for the new word josh LOL)

    I think it's possible to dabble while appreciating how much work and skill something takes, don't you? it's possible to respect the art/artist without being interested in creating or replicating it i think

    But that's probably not so common without exposure (which can be got without study)
  6. africana

    africana New Member

    WCS actually looks neat, very groovy/sexy, but i couldn't stand the music used gah. have had several WCS dancers try to lure me heh
  7. aimerrouge

    aimerrouge New Member

    As of person of Caribbean ancestry, I've listened and danced to everything from every island nation all my life. I can hold my own with with every dance associated with those various genres of music.

    As I started frequenting Salsa clubs, I noticed that there was a structure to the dance for turning the lady, spinning the lady, wrapping the lady, unwrapping the lady, etc. There came a point in time when I wanted to be able to do those things, that's when I started taking salsa classes.

    I don't believe that anyone is required to know how to do those things in order to salsa well or anything else well. I just wanted to be able to execute those moves.

    Salsa has never been a gateway, just another stop on my journey.
  8. africana

    africana New Member

    I like that statement :)

    Salsa got me interested in several other dances, some of which now I love for themselves (like Afro-dances, brazilian samba, and some jazz) but it's still remains my one passion, I cannot love anything else the way I love it :)

    almost sounds like a cult lol!!
  9. genEus

    genEus New Member

    I don't CARE. There is only one other dance that I could potentially be as passionate about as salsa. That is Argentine Tango, and more specific - Tango Nuevo.

    My number one reason for dancing is the music. That is, I would listen to salsa music even if I didn't dance (and I'm not a Latino!). But I definitely won't dance to something if I don't enjoy the music. If I were to dabble in other dances, I would probably do something which would teach me more dance technique, more body isolation, more control over my own spinning, and so on, but all of that would be for the sole purpose of becoming a better salsero.
  10. quixotedlm

    quixotedlm New Member

    By that yardstick, I should only ever dance cha-cha's or samba, or probably just samba. I like those music the best. Salsa is the best trade-off (for me) between "like music", "can dance" and "good scene in my city".
  11. alemana

    alemana New Member

    yeah, i have a hard timewith dances where i don't LUV LUV LUV the music. like, a really hard time.
  12. alemana

    alemana New Member

    but... loving the dance may help me come to love the music... hmm....
  13. africana

    africana New Member

    genEus completely agree - the music is without comparison for me, can't help it. That's why I can't keep interest in other dances for long
  14. genEus

    genEus New Member

    I am coming home after team practice tonight and opening a bottle of champagne!! africana spelled genEus right :shock: :rolleyes:;)
  15. africana

    africana New Member

    yup you about had a cow last time time I mispelled it --- don't have to tell me twice ahaha!

    (not like it's ur real name geez)
  16. genEus

    genEus New Member

    it's my alter ego and he's sensitive.
  17. africana

    africana New Member

    heeh I know
  18. KiwiMambo

    KiwiMambo New Member

    I'm a former Martial Artist. Okinawan Goju Ryu Karate for 14 years and then Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for 5 years. It's natural after you reach a certain level of proficiency in one art form to bring in something else that complements what you already know. I've been dancing Salsa for 3 years and am now exploring more deeply the music and dancing to the rhythm. I just started doing African Dance twice per week (3 hours total). I also do Frankie's body isolation workout 3 times per week. All so I can get good at Salsa. I'm a little obsessive about getting good at something :).

    The problem with all this is the average social dancer is not that obsessive about getting good. So social dancing actually gets less enjoyable. My friends always tell me to not be so competitive and just have fun. I can't help myself though :)
  19. naturallove

    naturallove New Member

    You know, I used to take African and bellydance regularly---but when push comes to shove, it's salsa for me! I agree with the others-it's the music, the feeling I get when I've had that guuuud dancin'-no other dance can match it for me.
  20. Shooshoo

    Shooshoo New Member

    I dance both salsa and latin ballroom socially.
    I started latin ballroom before salsa, took much more lessons in ballroom than salsa. Salsa I learnt more from dancing/practicing with different people. Ballroom more from lessons.

    So I actually invested alot more in ballroom than salsa, but I end up dancing salsa more than ballroom and I think my level in salsa is better than ballroom. But still it's a bit difficult to judge cause the salsa scene here is much stronger than the ballroom and in ballroom I dance with the same people, doing the same moves and the same instructor. So I can't really compare to anything.

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