Salsa Dancing DJ’s Take It Live Across The Pond


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Why not kickstart your weekend with a spot of Salsa dancing on Friday night? The highly-experienced salsa tutor / fashion designer Sheryl May will host her monthly salsa event at the Poverty Bay Club, with a 45 minute lesson to begin with. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never tried it before, anyone is welcome so why not give it a bash? Once the lesson concludes, there will be plenty of dancing to follow and the bar will remain open. Costs $5 on the door.

Croatian sisters Maya & Vanya (pictured above) are being touted as one of the hottest DJ acts in the country at the moment and are scheduled to hit the decks at Soho on Saturday night.  They have playing at every major party in NZ over the last year but apparently you have to "see them to believe them." Maya & Vanya are also booked to play at Rhythm & Vines this year, so this will be a good chance to check them out and see what they’re all about.

SofiaVergara

New York Salsa Event


Tanora Concert

Sunday – August 16, 2009

$12 gen. – 8pm

Led by singer-songwriter
Cecilia Engelhart,
pianist Bob Karty,
and percussionist Michael Spiro,
this sextet plays a compelling blend of Latin and Brazilian jazz from their recent CD "Día Real" and new originals.

La Pena Cultural Center
3105 Shattuck Avenue,
Berkeley, CA
94705

A delectable sextet featuring some of the region’s most gifted players, [Tanaóra] offers a melodically rich sound unlike any other band around.’

Andrew Gilbert, ‘Critic’s Pick’,

Trying Salsa As A Fitness Regimen


THE unfamiliar sound of sensuous music fills our small living room, where my partner is clutching the hip of a voluptuous woman in tight glittery black trousers and a plunging red sweater. He is sweating. She is smiling, but keeping a watchful eye on his feet. After all, it’s not every day a girl gets to dance with a 6ft 4 Aussie bloke put together like a series of uncontrol-lable paperclips, whose notorious clumsiness resulted in him being banished to a corner of the room to sit still in a chair during the birth of our child. This is the man who wouldn’t even dance at our wedding. Yet here he is, concentrating like his life depended on it, as he shuffles — slinks, for God’s sake — into a sexy slow-step samba. Welcome to the world of salsa. It’s a dance exercise trend that is sweeping the country and combines fitness, fun and even socialising. Most dancers are between 25-35 and single, but plenty of couples and older people are into it too. “A few couples meet at our classes — one couple are getting married and having the reception in a tapas bar, with salsa music of course,” says Hilary, our instructor. Hilary fell in love with salsa during a holiday to Italy 10 years ago, and became a qualified dance teacher. She now runs classes in Dublin five nights a week, with numbers ranging from 20, at her Salsa Fit sessions, to 100 at the traditional Thursday night gig held at the Garda Club. Although the starting level is slow, when you get skilled and confident enough to go to a club, you’re likely to be dancing for up to four hours. “Now that’s a good workout,” says Hilary, “and fun too.” She’s designed a special cardio-salsa class for those signing up to improve their fitness. The format is more like an aerobics session — we stand in line, with no partner required. But it still has the sensual body movements, great music and stimulating steps of salsa, and it’s a good cardiovascular workout. And you don’t need to have great Latin rhythm to take part. “The most common opening sentence I hear is: ‘I’ve got two left feet’,” says Hilary (35). But before I can lure my other half into a public class, he insists on a private lesson. Hilary instructs him to loosen his hands a little on my waist. They’re white at the knuckles where we’re linked in the centre between our feet, with thumbs raised. Our five-year-old hoots with laughter as Hilary instructs us in a “one, two, three, pause, five, six, seven, pause” mambo shuffle forward and back. “Do you want to join in?” she asks him. “Only if I can dance with you,” he simpers. Smart kid. As for the adult male, he’s starting to look like he’s enjoying himself. He perked up considerably after being told he gets to lead: “This is good domestic role reversal,” he mutters feelingly. By the end of the hour, we realise the dancing looks and feels better with smaller movements, instead of our start-out gambit of exaggerated clomping. To my astonishment, we are now going to group classes to try it out in public, where men often outnumber the women. “I wonder why that is,” I ask my bloke. “It’s got a lot going for it,” he says. “Good music, simple steps, and the chance to call the shots with your wife — and she can’t answer back.” We’ll see about that.

Atlanta will Soon Love It’s Salsa Dancing


Getting into dancing is ten times more fun with Latin Salsa dance classes Atlanta. More and more people are taking up ballroom dance lessons Atlanta because of so many reasons that will truly entice you into joining as well. Latin Salsa dance classes Atlanta come with very infectious music! The beat in Latin Salsa dance classes Atlanta is just too catchy that it really makes you want to dance. Even the shy ones find themselves tapping their feet to the music of Latin Salsa dance classes Atlanta – and after a minute or two, they are gamely on their feet trying out the moves themselves! Second, Latin Salsa dance classes Atlanta is very personal thing. It makes a lot of people feel good about themselves and serves as a motivation to get through the tasks of the day and find themselves back in the studio in the afternoon. Basically, ballroom dance lessons Atlanta is a commitment – and those who stick to it find themselves feeling better about themselves. Third, the many health benefits of ballroom dancing lessons Atlanta are just too good, Many researchers show that this type of dancing can reduce levels of stress and increase one’s energy. Ballroom dancing lessons Atlanta can also improve your overall muscle tone and body coordination. As you can see, dancing is a fun and unique way to burn those calories without getting bored! Fourth, ballroom dancing lessons Atlanta can be a good way to meet new people. Even if all of you come from highly different walks of life, your love for the music and the movement is what brings you together. In fact, one can probably say that dance is the language of peace – and there is definitely a lot of evidence of this in your studio. Fifth, ballroom dancing lessons Atlanta are a good reason to get creative and dress up a little bit. You wouldn’t want to attend your sessions dressed in baggy jeans, right? Because this is culture, you cannot help but dress up the part – so you can truly feel it and feel that you are part of the entire thing. Let us face it – we can be competitive even if it is already a friendly match. In ballroom dancing, competition just ups the excitement value of the dance so you are witnessing better moves and techniques. Ballroom forces one to be a bit competitive to show other people that you have as much right to be on the floor as them – thanks to your wicked moves and dips. At the end of the day, ballroom dancing is a really great thing to get hooked on. You have a lot of fun and in the process of dancing you learn that culture can be experienced in a different ways using your body as the vehicle for interpretation. Who knows – you could be dancing your way to success and inspiring other people in the same way that you were inspired to dance!

Cuban Salsa In A Step By Step Process


Dance has been an important part of rituals, celebrations and entertainment since before the birth of human civilization. In the beginning, before we had written language to record things, the purpose of dance was often to tell stories and to pass them down to future generations. The story of dancing in Cuba In Cuba, as in ancient times, dance tells its own story. The passion and energy of Cuban dance reveals the strength and conviction of the Cuban people, determined to enjoy life despite ‘la lucha’ (the struggle) of living in a strictly regulated country where the average monthly wage comes in at around 400 pesos – less than £10. The richness of Cuban music and dancing also tells the story of Cuba’s melting pot of cultures. From the high-stepping flamenco brought by the Spanish settlers in the 15th century to the frenzied tribal dances of the West African slaves, dancing is in the blood of the Cuban people. From the teenage girl in denim shorts to the cigar-seller on the street corner, Cubans are given to break into spontaneous dance steps. Furthermore, the people dancing on the streets of Havana are likely to be just as good as the professionals, because in Cuba dancing is simply a way of life. The variety of Cuban dances Cuba boasts a huge range of dances including classical ballet, contemporary, flamenco and folk dancing. But it is the partnered routines that appeared in Havana dancehalls between the 1920s and the 1950s – Salsa, rumba, mambo and cha-cha-cha – that can be seen in every Cuban bar, club and street. Of these, Salsa is the most popular dance internationally. Since the name ‘Salsa’ (it’s Spanish for ’sauce’) was coined, Salsa dancing has exploded in popularity in Latin America and across the world. Salsa dancing classes are now hugely popular but to really get into the swing of it a Salsa holiday in Cuba itself is a must. Tips for Cuban Salsa dancing If you do take yourself on a Cuban holiday, you’ll have the unique experience of watching Cubans Salsa dancing. It sometimes appears that by some genetic aberration they have been born with super flexible joints, defying physics to carry out all the complex manoeuvres they have integrated into the dancing. Their remarkable twisting body movements and natural sense of rhythm will dazzle you. If you have the right technique, Cuban Salsa is easier to learn than many other forms of dance. The basic footwork is a fairly simple walking motion, pausing every fourth beat, and there are some six basic steps you can follow to make sure you’re on the right tracks. 1 Relax To dance Cuban Salsa well it is important not to rush, but to relax into the steps. Movements should be precise and deliberate in addition to being flowing and smooth. 2 Walk with purpose Salsa dancing involves a continual circular motion. Couples walk around each other with an imaginary axis between them. This makes turns look smooth and effortless. Walking gives time to untangle your arms after each turn. 3 Have confidence in your lead The leader (usually the man) should have constant tension in his arms, while his hands guide his Salsa dancing partner around the floor. There is no need to clamp onto each other’s hands, only to use the right amount of tension to provide a leading signal. 4 Be flexible when following In order to follow well, ladies should try to match the tension of their partner. The exception to this is when arms need to be relaxed and flexible to complete arm-twisting Salsa moves without injury! 5 Keep balanced when you spin The key to all the spectacular spins in Salsa is not to lose your balance. One way to do it is by spotting while you spin – focusing on one spot at each turn – an age-old dance technique. 6 Use your body In Salsa dancing, ladies should make use of their body and be sensual, playful and creative. This can involve some creative arm movements, going with what feels right and basically showing off a bit. Enjoy!

Students Get Involved In Salsa Dancing Contest


About 150 youngsters from Indio, La Quinta and Palm Desert will take to the floor in the Desert Sands Unified School District’s first ballroom-dancing competition later this month. Advertisement On May 16, students will tango, fox-trot, salsa, East Coast swing, or cha-cha their ways through the competition, said Bob Horn, who is co-organizing the event. Each dance will have its own competition with participants engaging in two dance-offs. Judges will select three couples to remain on the floor to compete for first-, second- and third-place medallions, Horn said. All competitors will receive a participation ribbon. The schools with the entrants who win first place in the competitions will also receive a trophy that will be displayed for a year, Horn said. Horn and his wife, Nancy, who are professional dancers, held free dance lessons for after-school-program teachers at schools in the district. Those teachers then taught children in their programs.

Quick And Dirty Guide From a Salsa Beginner


After decompressing from a busy week, I was up for something spontaneous. Something to feel immersed, alive and in a different city. Just so happened my friend Mel called out-of-the-blue to tell me I had some lookalike on the tele. I could hear her husband Rod laughing in the background as I searched for “Jonas Brothers” on the Disney Channel. I did find the actress. And it was creepy. As we were talking, it dawned on me that I was speaking to two of the best dancers I know. They are the only two among my circles of friends who have actually taken lessons (swing, salsa, etc.) Within 15 minutes of the conversation, we talked each other into a convoluted plan that would take us to Chicago’s Nacional 27: salsa dancing. We walked in, got a table by the bar and ordered one of my personal favorites, caipirinhas. The booming music, chatter and element made me feel I was somewhere in Latin America – Sao Paolo? Mexico City? Bogota perhaps? I perused the menu and noticed the amazing dishes as I walked by to check out the dancefloor. Dishes that included smoked chicken empanadas, shrimp adobado with pineapple-vanilla salsa, boniato and plantain croquetas, barbecued lamb tacos, and variations of bamboo skewers, ceviches and paellas. Oh. My. Word. After an amusing, yet in-depth chat with James the Navy pilot-turned-physician at the bar, we picked up a few more cocktails and headed to the “club.” My goal was to hold my own. The dancefloor was already packed. I sat and watched Mel and Rod show me their dance prowess. It brought a smile to my face in reminiscing of our days at UW-Madison when people would clear the floor to watch Rod dance. And here we are almost 20 years and how many kids later, starting our evening at 11pm just to dance Latin-American style. They told me of the basic dances, salsa, cha cha, merenge and mambo. Though subtle, each had a definite style of its own. I’m thinking the difference is in the hips. Those who have the coordination can sell it; those who don’t …not so much. The simultaneous smooth stepping and walking with sultry hips and shoulders to an upbeat tempo — that takes focus. It was exhilarating for me to feel the music press against my body while simply people watching…from neophytes and laughter to polished serious dancers. Then Rod turned to me and took me out on the floor. Oy. Growing up in the disco era with four sisters who lived for dancing pretty much equated me with self-proclaimed coordination. Any confidence in that thought quickly diminished. Rod taught me his and Mel’s favorite: bachata. It involves moving to the side and ending with a hip thrust on the fourth beat. For some reason, I just couldn’t get it. What was my problem? I looked more like a Ms. Jazz Hands version of John Travolta’s 10th “Saturday Night Fever” sequel, “Stayin Alive”. My sisters would hang their heads. Mindless and freeform for him; focus and confusion for me. How embarrassing when we are surrounded by pros. The neat thing was everyone was in their own zone. After Rod made a few suggestions, I got it! Then he smoothly led with turns and spinning me behind his back, all the while, keeping the same counting and side-stepping with such finesse. Mel made a good observation. At a place like this, if someone comes up and asks you to dance, he genuinely just wants to dance. No expectations or motive necessarily. Just a polite “thank you” afterwards and heads on his merry way. With a ginger-passion sangria, strangers dancing with strangers surrounding us, it felt like I was on holiday. Nacional 27 offers salsa lessons every first and third Tuesday of the month. Guess I was a week off, though I notice it is holding its first annual Cinco de Mayo fiesta. A 2-fer.