Salsa > Salsa Study in Latin America?

Discussion in 'Salsa' started by HailMary, Jan 20, 2006.

  1. dancin/dj

    dancin/dj Member

    hi mary, i curious how long have u read this board? you stated u want too learn salsa dancing by going to latin america(not to study the how"s and when"s salsa music came to be etc..) anyway(fact, certain parts of latin america are communist and ruthless with there leaders, something a lot of people are not saying) look dont misread what im writing but to travel to learn more about salsa dancing, when u live in california seems strange, a lot of famous latinos live there and are from latin american countries, another fact is this some of the best salsa dancers live in america.please, of course there are great dancers all over the world i know that, mexico is not known for its salsa dancing,puerto rico is more into reggaton than salsa, so if u want to travel to latin america too see new things and learn the culture that"s one thing,but it"s the US that brought salsa to the world more than you know, and that from many types of latinos and non latinos from america.why did i mention ruthless leaders in some countries in latin america? know where your going young lady,again something people are not telling you.
  2. alemana

    alemana New Member

    we have a pretty ruthless leader here in the US ;)

    but seriously, the reason that political context hasn't come up in this thread is that it's discouraged... many of us of course have opinions on these matters, but i personally try to keep them out of my posts about dancing cuz they mosty function in an inflammatory way, whether i intended that or not.
  3. dcnewbee

    dcnewbee New Member

    salsa 54 in CR

    i went to costa rica in december 05 and danced at salsa 54 on a friday. the ticos (costa ricans) cannot dance at all (not a dancing culture) it was painful to watch them dance to reggaeton and salsa. they're salsa is cumbia. which in my opinion is no fun. none of the ladies wanted to follow my lead, instead they wanted me to lead them in the cumbia steps and turns. also ticos are big in reggaeton. it was so weird all the music i heard in costa rica, i had already heard on my local latin station.

    what this thread leads me to believe is that the US has the overall best style and best general salsa dancers in the world, am i wrong? its seems salsa orginated in PR and Cuba but was refinded and perfected in the usa.
  4. Rosa

    Rosa New Member

    I'm no expert and I've never been to either the US or Latin America, but I think from what I've heard and read and been told by my teachers, that Salsa, whilst it has its basis in certain Cuban and South American rhythms (most notably Son), was actually synthesised and put together in the US? (I think probably NY.)

    Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.

    Rosa :)
  5. HailMary

    HailMary New Member

    Oh no! I just wrote a long reply and accidentally deleted it. Argg.

    Okay, here's the summary of what I wrote:

    Ellis, thanks for the link to Cuba, but I want to avoid anything illegal, at this point.

    Alemana has it right about why I want to go to Latin America. It's mostly about finances (private lessons are about 1/4th the price) but I also want to practice my Spanish and do a bit of traveling.

    Thanks for the link about Buenos Aires, salsera alemana. The city sounds great. So, from what you all are saying, Buenos Aires sounds like the place to go. If they have some good tango, they must have some good salsa, as well. One person, on a previous page, gave me a link to a tango site in Argentina that also does salsa. Private lessons were going for about 20$ an hour. That's a bit above my budget, at this point, but I think I can find some one-on-one instruction for 10-15 an hour by looking in an Argentinian newspaper.

    I'm a guy, by the way. My apoligies, the name is a bit ambigious.
  6. alvaro

    alvaro New Member

    If you also want to do some travel, its a big point to Argentina: dancing-wise Colombia is a very good choice (maybe even better, depending on what you are looking for), but Argentina has great dancing and is also near Brasil, Uruguay, Paraguay and Chile. Traveling around Colombia, on the other hand, could be somewhat more dangerous.

    check out: (spanish)

    There you'll find a nice list of teachers. My own teacher knows a lot of people in BA, so let me know and i can definitely get you some good information. I attended a workshop with Hernan Rey, and i think he is a great teacher ... but he might be in europe now.
  7. Interesting! So reggeaton has also caught up with Central America. Oh my...

    Certainly there are a lot of great dancers here in the US. "Best" style, though, is a matter of taste. I personally prefer PR style like it is danced in Puerto Rico. PR style was not "refined and perfected" in the US, it is different to NY style, more elegance and less "wiggling". It is being refined in Puerto Rico. For me, Puerto Rico still has the best salsa dancers in the world, however, that is my personal taste. There are so many good dancers out there now that it is hard to tell who is really - from a neutral point of view -the very best.
    I have seen great dancers in Cuba, too!

    Yes, PR has a lot of (too much) reggeaton but don't forget, reggeaton comes from Puerto Rico (I also hate reggeaton). However, you can still find great salsa in Puerto Rico.
    On January 14 there was a great dance for Roberto Roena's birthday at Pier 10 in San Juan. This is a very nice big ballroom.
    "Este es el Primer Bailable del 2006 con los que han puesto a bailar por más de 40 Años al pueblo de Puerto Rico: Papo Lucca y La Sonora Ponceña, Bobby Valentín y su Orquesta, El Apollo Sound, Johnny Pacheco y su Tumbao" Añejo." (copied from the newsletter).

    Last Friday (Jan. 20) there was a great concert in Haty Rey (metro area of San Juan):
    Tributo a Tite Curet Alonso 'Salsa, Bolero y Mas' - Ene 20, 2006
    "Tributo a Tite" el Vie, 20 de Ene en el Coliseo Roberto Clemente, Hato Rey. Con la participación de Cheo Feliciano, La India, Victor Manuelle, Vico C, Andy Montañez y Moncho Rivera.

    Tite Curet was a famous Puerto Rican composer.

    And on and on it goes...

    Yes, I know, I make myself suffer with those newsletters ... Oh well...
  8. MacMoto

    MacMoto Active Member

    I can see your point about cost, but also beware of false economy... you learn more from one private lesson with a first-class teacher than four private lessons with a clueless teacher. Also, I think a combination of private and group lessons is the best way to learn, especially if you are a relative beginner.

    How good is your Spanish? Would you be able to follow salsa lessons conducted entirely in Spanish, or would you be relying on the teacher speaking English?

    I'm not saying don't go to Latin America... travelling is great, and I'm all for broadening your horizons. I'm only saying that, if you are ruling out Cuba and PR (and NY and LA), you are pretty much ruling out the best countries for learning salsa, so make sure whichever country you decide to go has other attractions that interest you.

    Not necessarily... after all, Argentina is the home of tango (it's not called Argentine Tango for nothing, you know;) ) so I would expect salsa to be very much a minority dance in that country. On the other hand, tango is a beautiful dance, and the lead/follow skills you learn through tango can be applied to salsa very effectively. If you decide to go to Buenos Aires, do give tango a try.
  9. dancin/dj

    dancin/dj Member

    Your correct Rosa in the sense that its right here in the US that salsa, had and has, its major, almost quantum leap,come on people give it up. Ny and Miami and La that"s truth-as someone has already said some of the best teachers are right here in the US and the growth is mainly from here from all the hard work of latinos and non latinos men and women who did a lot of had work to bring it to such a level,Cuba has never changed(being the first too do mambo/and rueda etc.... so wonderfull are many of the people and the freedom they have in there dancing-minus hmmmmmmmm communism ,ok i let it go, but remember people are still coming into miami when they can by boat(if they dont die or get caught). yes salsa dancing mainly came from Ny then LA slammed it to a new level and miami keeps its own groove-its all good as they say,but for me as rick derringer the rock musican said anything you want we got it here right in the USA.please dont misunderstand that statement im (only using it in the context of salsa dancing)
  10. HailMary

    HailMary New Member

    Great links, alvaro. These are very helpful. This definitely puts me on the right track.

    And thanks everyone for all the good input, thus far.
  11. pamkiki

    pamkiki New Member

    Salsa classes

    Hey I am taking salsa classes in Guatemala, I am from Guatemala! I dont have the address with me.. but if you want I can give it to you! the place name is Salsa Latin Studio, and there is also classes in a discoteque call "la clave!"

  12. pamkiki

    pamkiki New Member

    Salsa Latin Studio... is the name of the best Academy in Guatemala
  13. HailMary

    HailMary New Member

    Hey. Thanks for the info! Does this academy have a website or any way I can contact them? And tell me more about the classes, if you get a chance - are you studying individually, with a group, what's the quality of the teachers, what does it cost, etc.

  14. IsaacAltman

    IsaacAltman Member

    Barranquilla or Cali Colombia is good.
  15. hedczech

    hedczech New Member

    I'm no authority on salsa, but i have taken classes in Seattle, and also in Xela, Guatemala. I know of about five instructors there who teach privately or out of studios in Xela. Salsa is also fairly popular in Antigua. Last fall they had a tiny salsa congress there, with people from other parts of guatemala and from the capital. (i'm sure there's plenty of salsa in the capital, but i wouldn't want to spend much time there).

    Guatemala is cheap. I once paid $50 for a private lesson in seattle. I paid $40 for 5 hours in Xela. Was my instructor a professional dancer? No, but she was very good, and intelligent, and as a beginner i didn't need a premium level of instruction. She didn't speak english, and so it may have taken longer for me to learn since my grasp of the language wasn't that strong. I learned quite a number of moves and patters and shines. I later met another dance instructor who taught me and some other gringos choreography for a presentation to promote his school. We later did two more presentations with him, and he had some really beautiful choreography. He didn't ask for a cent.

    I have not been to Cuba, but i hear it is quite expensive, more expensive than mexico or costa rica... perhaps as expensive as the states. Puerto Rico is also expensive from what Lonely Planet says, and not very backpacker friendly. Of course Cuba and PR and NYC are the fountain of Salsa, but can anyone afford to study seriously there without dropping thousands of dollars? Perhaps it might not be a bad idea to get your chops down in Guatemala or Columbia etc.., and then you can pay more when you know what you're doing and want to refine..

    I have been in guatemala for half a year and have not encountered problems, short of a stolen camera and cell phone. The volcano (Pacaya) where you get robbed and raped... i hiked up it yesterday. The lava was incredible. Crime -does- happen here and you need to be smart how you travel, but thousands of people travel thru central america without incident.

    my two cents
  16. tj

    tj New Member

    Welcome to DF, hedczech!

    This thread's a year old, is it the conversation about Guatemala that drew you to it? Thanks for sharing the info, as lots of us do all sorts of salsa travel!
  17. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    s. amer.

    Was not posting this far back, but the 2 obvious choices ( and by far the best ) Colombia and Venezuela-- outside of p.r.--yeah

    Cuba is very over rated. Yes it does offer more history, more street style , but is in somewhat of a time warp, as far as current trends.

    This is a very good place to go for the experienced dancer, who wants to implement more authenticity into his/her, reportoire . I think the beginner might get a little conflicted with their style . Remember, they still " talk " mambo .
  18. hedczech

    hedczech New Member

    > This thread's a year old, is it the conversation about Guatemala that drew
    > you to it?

    aiy.. well i hope the girl found somewhere to learn salsa. I found this thread via google because i'm also traveling through central america looking for places to practice salsa. Unfortuantely I find a lot of clubs are more interested in reggaeton... sometimes a bit of merengue or cumbia. I might make it up to the DF but right now i'm making my way south from cancun.
  19. tj

    tj New Member

    Wow, sounds like quite the adventure!

    Well, hopefully more people will chime in!

Share This Page