Welcome to Episode 94 of the Salsa Kings LIVE podcast
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This week, Andres is going to talk about being innocent and the night when he realized one of the biggest changes in his dance, making it one of the most impactful days of his life. Andres talks about the role of teachers in dance and how they not only teach you the moves and steps of the dance, but also their help in giving you those epiphanies and realizations, such as the one that Andres had.
By ‘Innocent’ Andres means going into a dance with an open mind and to see your partner as innocent, to not color your dance with them. This may sound simple and easy, but many things can color your thoughts and expectations of your dance partner, such as if they remind you of another person or even just previous dances you’ve had with other people. The goal should be to view them as something of a blank slate, rather than knowing what you can expect of them.
Andres mentions his previous episode ‘Break Up With Salsa’ to speak of the importance of connection to your dance partner rather than the genre of the music or the specific moves of the dance. The point of a new dance partner is to have new experiences. Certainly teachers will tell you to see patterns and expect certain things, but these expectations should not be imposed on your dance partner. They need the freedom to be themselves to express their dance just as much as you do. Whether leading or following, the important thing is to allow each of you to be who you are. No one likes to be limited in their art, no matter what their positions are.
What you want to do in a dance like this is to allow the other space. Not in a physical sense necessarily, but in a mental and emotional capacity, where they feel like they have the ability to be who they are without worrying about expectations being unduly put on them.
To go into a dance with innocence is to make the dance more unique and personal. Rather than thinking ‘this is what the dance needs to be’ you should be allowing your partner to feel at ease, which will make the dance feel more natural and more like two people creating something new rather than following a script.
“It’s so important for those of you in the lead position to be in the follow position and those of you in the follow position to be in the lead position so that you can begin to gain perspective.”
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