Meet Me Halfway

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Welcome to Episode 46 of the Salsa Kings LIVE podcast

This week, Andres wants you to meet each other halfway. Sometimes when you dance, the connection is instantaneous. Other times it is not. What makes for some dances to work and others to fall apart? It takes both parties to be able to read each other and how they dance. You need to take some time to figure out how to read each other. There are so many variables that can donate to a dance going well or poorly that without being able to get to know someone, you won’t be able to reliably dance and interact with each other.

Andres recommends starting out with a simpler dance, such as the two-step so that you can see how they dance in that manner. Dancers need to feel the waters so that they can be more sensitive to the needs of their dance partner. Many dancers speak of who they connect with or don’t, but the ideal should be to be able to dance with everyone. You should be able to read another dancer and be able to connect with them and adjust yourself appropriately.

Many dancers are preoccupied with the techniques and the files that they don’t take the time to read the dance and actually connect. Techniques are tools to be used, not the very reason for the dance. They are simply ‘executable files’ and if not executed at the right moment in the right context as your partner needs it, they won’t be executed properly.

The important idea behind dancing isn’t to get things ‘right’ or ‘wrong’. It is to respect the needs and abilities of your partner. Simply reducing everything to how things are being executed makes for a stiff dance and for a lack of communication on the part of the dancers. All in all, a poor dance. This is where the idea of chameleonizing comes in. The ability to adjust yourself to the needs of your partner in whatever situation, rather than becoming preoccupied with their technique is paramount to what dance is trying to achieve.

Dance is about communication, and if you aren’t bothering to pick up what someone is communicating then how can you be expected to dance properly with the person. Next time you are on the dance floor, make sure to try and meet them halfway.

“What’s the response here? How is this going to play out? And this kind of data that you’re able to collect from each other, which is, of course, a unique energy signature with every single dance that you do, you have to take the time to sync up with each other. To get to know each other from the get-go, to have a little better understanding to know how to lead or how to follow. To respect the other person as a dancer as opposed to ‘oh you’re doing it wrong’ or ‘oh you’re doing it right’. That’s very ignorant.”

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