Salsa Libre is a modern, equitable, playful style of Latin
partner dance: Salsa, Merengue, Bachata. The woman is not "just a follower."
She is a co-creator. Among the upper echelons of Salsa dancers around
the world, many of these ideas have been in practice for quite a while.
And so, ithacadance.com (beginning with Kurt & Heather), over
the space of two years, bundled them together into an intelligible style.
And we are still continually adding to the Salsa Libre repertoire.
World class dancers / instructors Edie The Salsa Freak, Henry Herrera,
Jazzy Ruiz, Al Expinoza are our patron saints.
Instead of un-changing lead-follow roles, we
are DANCERS first. We are creative extensions of the music. The "leader"
recognizes and celebrates the creativity, expression and artistry of the
"follower." He offers her space to create and play to the rhythm
and phrasing of the music. When she is done, she returns to a clear basic
step pattern, right on with the musical phrase. She may take the space offered
and use it, or extend it, or not, as she feels. The "leader" also
takes space to create, express and play, instead of being stuck in chronic
"leader" mode. This is DANCE. Compared to older strict lead-follow
models, Salsa Libre is a freer, joyous extension
of the music. We can interact as partners in so many ways, exploring
theater, rhythm, etc together.
Specific turn techniques and modern
methods of hand connection allow more freedom, and yet retain a clearly
felt connection. The leader mustt be considerably more attentive to the
follower than in strict lead-follow dancing, since she has many more options,
a pleasurable experience for both partners.
You can still throw in your standard
complex turns, spins and combinations: the leading has to be clear and
determined! And with
Salsa Libre, there are unlimited variations possible on every
move. There are many gestures that embody the Salsa Libre
dance values, and limitless ways to interpret them. Salsa Libre
appeals to creative, playful, expressive, experienced dancers, although
we recognize that they are in a minority. Most men just want to lead
a million moves, and most women just want to follow them, with a little
styling thrown in - we are going way beyond that.
Historically, it would appear that top
dog woman dancers in the world of West Coast Swing led the charge
in creating more freedom in partner dancing. At ithacadance.com,
we fully embrace this idea in all of our swing dance styles, and even to
some extent in our much more traditional and in-the-box ballroom styles.
Salsa Dance, Ithaca
Early Bird Salsa Dance Club
August 22 Sat, 2015, 7-9pm
SACRED ROOT Kava Lounge & Tea Bar, 139 W. State St
Cornell Sun Bldg, side entrance on Geneva Street
all welcome - FREE