Ifat Glassman

My Salsa show

48 posts in this topic

Notice though how there is zero connection between the music and the dance in this one? My partner simply could not sense the rhythm at all. Eventually, after several hours of trying to dance to the rhythm, I started to train myself to dance while ignoring the music (pretty funny ha?). This was the only way I could let him lead me. Otherwise, I would constantly resist being moved or move him myself to try to get us into the rhythm. See?

I'm taking ballroom dancing now and I've found that is a common problem.

This is what happens when you go dancing just to get girls.

I think that's what happens when the guy has no sense of rhythm. I once took an aerobics class where we did our exercises to music. Quite a few men did the exercises perfectly but weren't even close to the beat. For the most part, they were simply unaware and unconcerned with it.

BTW, regarding that topic... Just something I thought of after my last post on the subject, is that I don't think that honesty means that someone has an obligation to declare his/her intentions. There is no lie involved in having a secrete goal, like going dancing to meet girls.

Good, because that's what motivates 99% of the men and the majority of women who engage in social dancing.

But if a man wants to be in 100% self-expression, living exactly as who he is, never hiding, always going for what he wants without shame or disguise, then putting himself through some boring, non-enjoyable routine just to secretly try to achieve X is not the right thing to do.

Pursuing X, when X might lead to S.E.X., is hardly a boring routine for most guys. :blink:

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Just something I thought of after my last post on the subject, is that I don't think that honesty means that someone has an obligation to declare his/her intentions. There is no lie involved in having a secrete goal, like going dancing to meet girls.
I don't think it's that much of a secret! :blink:
But if a man wants to be in 100% self-expression, living exactly as who he is, never hiding, always going for what he wants without shame or disguise, then putting himself through some boring, non-enjoyable routine just to secretly try to achieve X is not the right thing to do.
No, I think it depends. We often do things that are in our rational self-interest though they may not be directly enjoyable: taking medicine when sick, going to the dentist, sitting in rush hour traffic to get to work, etc. So if a guy has to put out effort to get to a point in his life to where he is more appealing to the fairer sex, then more power to him. If a woman was interested in some guy who really likes football, would it be wrong for her to learn about the game? If I want to meet women, shouldn't I go to where women are and get into things they enjoy?
A self-confident man does things that he enjoys, and acts as who he is. If he is after a girl, he does not try to hide it from her <-- Sexy.

A man without self confidence is willing to put himself through hours of non-enjoyable activity so that he can secretly try to get what he is afraid to pursue openly <-- Lame.

I agree, but those aren't the only cases. Some dance clubs are just meat markets where nobody is really that into the dancing, so there's no pretense when a guy walks up to a girl and what his intentions are. Other places are a mix, and others are very into the dancing itself.

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Notice though how there is zero connection between the music and the dance in this one? My partner simply could not sense the rhythm at all. Eventually, after several hours of trying to dance to the rhythm, I started to train myself to dance while ignoring the music (pretty funny ha?). This was the only way I could let him lead me. Otherwise, I would constantly resist being moved or move him myself to try to get us into the rhythm. See? This is what happens when you go dancing just to get girls.

I struggled a lot when I started with picking up the rhythm in salsa (other dance styles much less so). There's usually so much going on with the percussion that it's hard to pick out the beat, but I eventually got the hang of it.

I have a fantastic teacher who spent many lessons working on technique so that I can lead well. Dancing is hard for a guy starting out, because not only does he have to learn his steps, he also has to simultaneously keep the beat, decide which steps to do, know his partners steps, lead her into them, and navigate the floor. A guy can't lead well without being able to do all of these simultaneously, which is not easy. It's easier with a choreographed routine on an empty dancefloor, but then it's also a matter of memorization. And, at least in the US, there's a social stigma attached to men who dance; it's not macho here, though it certainly is in South America and other places. So for all that, I tend to be generous in judging beginning male dancers and don't go overboard in criticism. At least he's out there dancing!

I don't know details about the class, but I thought the routine was good, especially for beginners.

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This is what happens when you go dancing just to get girls.

I think that's what happens when the guy has no sense of rhythm. I once took an aerobics class where we did our exercises to music. Quite a few men did the exercises perfectly but weren't even close to the beat. For the most part, they were simply unaware and unconcerned with it.

"Unconcerned", that's a mighty funny word to use, and also accurate (in some cases). It's funny to me, because the music is the core of dancing (not so much in aerobics, but still a big part of enjoyment). What I noticed about dancing is that essentially, dancing is self-expression of the way the music relates to the dancer and the way they experience it*[explanation below]. And so when they don't have the first step of having a connection with the music, there is nothing to express really. No emotions to express. And that is what gives the tremendous enjoyment from dancing - self expression.

Now, if you have a good teacher, and you can move well, you can do nice dance movements even though you do not experience any emotion to express. It's what I call dancing without soul (or just practicing, depends on the context). So when someone is always dancing without any connection to the music, it stops being about self-expression, and they do not enjoy the movements. They might enjoy being close to their partner, they might enjoy the challenge of doing the movements correctly, but they do not feel the tremendous energy inside that makes you want to move your whole body to capture what you're feeling.

So as for my salsa partner (the guy with no sense of rhythm). Is it clear now why I said "this is what happens when you go dancing just to get girls"? It's because he cared about getting someone and did not care about dancing.

I see your point though, someone may want to dance (for the sake of dancing) but still struggle with a rhythm problem. Though, if he is genuinely interested in dancing, eventually he will "connect" with the rhythm because the music already gives him some enjoyment to begin with.

* [ To give some examples: If the music is sad and slow, the dancer feels those things and expresses them in the way he/she moves. If the music is about admiration and elevated self-esteem (like Roxette's "The Look"), the dance reflects how the dancer feels that this theme relates to him/her-self. ]

BTW, regarding that topic... Just something I thought of after my last post on the subject, is that I don't think that honesty means that someone has an obligation to declare his/her intentions. There is no lie involved in having a secrete goal, like going dancing to meet girls.

Good, because that's what motivates 99% of the men and the majority of women who engage in social dancing.

Yes. But from time to time you see sparks of real dancing, who feel intensely and move with enjoyment. So I just look for these to look at, and ignore the rest as insignificant. As for their honesty... I never really considered them as dishonest, just as lame, Unless it was an extreme case of someone just looking to grab my butt under the pretense of asking for a dance. So what the majority does... is not an act of evil that's for sure, but it's not 100% honest either. It's a time-off from the Roark kind of selfishness and honesty. I do not consider Peter Keating to be evil for choosing a career he does not enjoy to satisfy his second handish nature, but still, it is not honest in a way, and it is lame. Not sure how I would clasify his moral status. How would you?

Pursuing X, when X might lead to S.E.X., is hardly a boring routine for most guys. ;)

(Haha. Pretty funny) I meant dancing itself is boring for them. If they could choose, they would much rather spend their time with their partner/s in a different way.

BTW, cool thing that you're dancing ballroom. BTW #2: I think you missed my post with questions about you doing choreography (post #15 on page 1).

_______________________________

Just something I thought of after my last post on the subject, is that I don't

But if a man wants to be in 100% self-expression, living exactly as who he is, never hiding, always going for what he wants without shame or disguise, then putting himself through some boring, non-enjoyable routine just to secretly try to achieve X is not the right thing to do.

No, I think it depends. We often do things that are in our rational self-interest though they may not be directly enjoyable: taking medicine when sick, going to the dentist, sitting in rush hour traffic to get to work, etc.

Nice examples. :blink: And that's exactly how dancing is for these guys. Like a dentist appointment. (Lol. "OK, Bud, time to do what you got to do to get the ladies, hang in there for your long term interest ! "). It's wrong, because those other things you mentioned are necessary. But it's not necessary to dance to get women. Someone can just muster the courage to ask women he likes out in the open, and then he doesn't have to do something which is not enjoyable for him (like playing football or dancing).

If a woman was interested in some guy who really likes football, would it be wrong for her to learn about the game?

It depends what the reason is. If she was doing it so she doesn't have to admit to him that she liked him, then yes. If she's doing it because she thinks that playing/talking about football with him will be fun, then it's great. But if she cannot enjoy football at all, then it would certainly suck if she did it, and it would be pretty selfless, IMO.

Some dance clubs are just meat markets where nobody is really that into the dancing, so there's no pretense when a guy walks up to a girl and what his intentions are. Other places are a mix, and others are very into the dancing itself.

Yes, I thought of this as well when considering if they are honest or not. And it does depend on the environment like you said.

But even if there is no pretence involved, from my PoV, a selfish person naturally does what is enjoyable for him, and looks for like-minded people in those places.

BTW, This turned out to develop to an interesting discussion.

Dancing is hard for a guy starting out, because not only does he have to learn his steps, he also has to simultaneously keep the beat, decide which steps to do, know his partners steps, lead her into them, and navigate the floor. A guy can't lead well without being able to do all of these simultaneously, which is not easy. It's easier with a choreographed routine on an empty dancefloor, but then it's also a matter of memorization. And, at least in the US, there's a social stigma attached to men who dance; it's not macho here, though it certainly is in South America and other places. So for all that, I tend to be generous in judging beginning male dancers and don't go overboard in criticism. At least he's out there dancing!

It is difficult. But I was not judging his performance really. I was judging his approach to dancing (and his performance as a result). I would pick any time a partner who loves dancing but has a hard time with technique over someone who has great technique but no "soul" for dancing.

Small comment: with all the discussion that has developed since my comment to Piz, I realized it might be interpreted that I think Piz is insecure, etc' etc' the rest of the things that I said. So just wanted to straighten it out, that my comment was intended as a small joke (not a very funny one as it turns out), but certainly it was not personal.

And in any case, I don't think it's the end of the world if someone goes dancing to pick up chicks. I don't think he's evil Knievel. Just not very appealing to see in action.

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That was pretty good. I hope you keep it up because I would like to see you get better. It's unfortunate that you didn't dance with a partner; it's better that way. If you continue to dance alone, I suggest that you add more spice and wilderness to your routine; dance more to he ground, get down more, shake some more, use the floor to move around, do some flips :blink: , etc. The music you chose didn't really allow for that. It sounded like Tito Puentes, and he is more old school, as he is one of the originators of modern Salsa, so his stuff is softer, though still danceable. You would have to choose music that is more intense and fast. Try Hector Lavoe's Aguanile. Check out You Tube for some live performances. One of my favorites is Frankie Ruiz.

I dance a strange, wild version of salsa, which technically is not correct, but is still good in my opinion. It is fun to watch but not correct. I usually dance alone. I am going to teach myself how to be more correct. I have acquired some good learning tools for that purpose.

You have inspired me. Keep it up.

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This time it's a dance in a couple:
This one I like even more.

I liked them both, but agree that the couples one is most fun to watch. Nice dancing Ifat! It looks like fun, and you look terrific. I liked the middle salsa girl too, in the first video. She seemed to express the feel of it very well, and I loved the white shoes. Hope she wasn't the one whose limitations got in your way, but the way she moved looked good to me.

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I'm curious about you doing choreography. What kind of dance?

See my Choreography web page here where I describe my style thusly:

My style of choreography is neither "ballet" nor "modern" dance, but what I call "Dramatic Dance" -- dances which have drama and passion, appeal to fundamental emotions, and express and complement their music.

Since I wrote that, I have discovered that what I do is now done by others and has become quite popular. They call it "lyrical dance" (link).

Lyrical dance is a dance style that blends ballet and jazz dance and is generally smoother than ballet and a bit faster but not as fast as jazz. techniques with choreography that strives to interpret the story and emotions of the music. It is a passionate, expressive dance style in which the dancer attempts to convey strong emotions such as love, joy, despair and anger, through movement and facial expressions. Lyrical dance is so named for the meaning of the word lyrical: having a poetic, expressive quality; expressing deep personal emotions; highly rhapsodic or enthusiastic.

Lyrical dances are typically—though not always—performed to music with lyrics, with the lyrics serving as inspiration for movements and expressions.

How did you come to doing it? Since when?

I fell in love with dancing when I went to see "Oklahoma" at age seven and was blown away with Agnes DeMille's amazing way of telling a story with dance. I took dancing lessons from then until my twenties and performed, sometimes for free and sometimes professionally, in musicals in Philadelphia from age 9 until 22.

Is there anything you choreographed that I can see (like a video online or something)?

I wish! I've talked to friends in the movie business about it in the past, but now with YouTube, it would be much easier to actually pull it off. I would insist, however, on first-rate dancers and good production values.

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Here's something that might inspire you. This is from a huge dancing talent show in Canada that is currently taking place. Check out Romina at the 1:30 mark.

Romina Solo Salsa Routine

Oh yeah, she was good. I also liked the one before Romina.

I liked the middle salsa girl too, in the first video. She seemed to express the feel of it very well, and I loved the white shoes. Hope she wasn't the one whose limitations got in your way, but the way she moved looked good to me.

No, she wasn't. She's the one with talent and enjoys dancing.

I'm curious about you doing choreography. What kind of dance?

See my Choreography web page here where I describe my style thusly:

My style of choreography is neither "ballet" nor "modern" dance, but what I call "Dramatic Dance" -- dances which have drama and passion, appeal to fundamental emotions, and express and complement their music.

Cool. What do you know, it's exactly like what I described dancing to be.

I fell in love with dancing when I went to see "Oklahoma" at age seven and was blown away with Agnes DeMille's amazing way of telling a story with dance. I took dancing lessons from then until my twenties and performed, sometimes for free and sometimes professionally, in musicals in Philadelphia from age 9 until 22.

Awesome.

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That was pretty good. I hope you keep it up because I would like to see you get better. It's unfortunate that you didn't dance with a partner; it's better that way. If you continue to dance alone, I suggest that you add more spice and wilderness to your routine; dance more to he ground, get down more, shake some more, use the floor to move around, do some flips :blink: , etc.

Frankly, I appreciate advices on technique, but I do not like advices on what movements I should do. Kinda annoys me. But I can see you have good intention, so it's alright.

The music you chose didn't really allow for that. It sounded like Tito Puentes, and he is more old school, as he is one of the originators of modern Salsa, so his stuff is softer, though still danceable. You would have to choose music that is more intense and fast. Try Hector Lavoe's Aguanile. Check out You Tube for some live performances. One of my favorites is Frankie Ruiz.

Thanks for the recommendations. I'll check it out, they sound good. I like fast rhythms.

I dance a strange, wild version of salsa, which technically is not correct, but is still good in my opinion. It is fun to watch but not correct. I usually dance alone. I am going to teach myself how to be more correct. I have acquired some good learning tools for that purpose.

Sounds cool. I like dances which are not "by the book". Most of what I dance is not salsa, it's freestyle to rock n' roll, dance music, Gipsy Kings (Samba) or some other stuff that I like and don't know how to classify. I just dance at home.

Dancing alone is more fun for me, too. Actually I think the best option is to dance with a partner but half together and half alone one in front of the other. Never tried it enough to be sure though, but I'm planning to.

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I appreciate your annoyance. You must understand that I am latin and have grown up watching salsa all my life. I have seen some really awesome stuff. And so, what you did in your video, which was still very competent, is not what you typically see at dance clubs or on So You Think You Can Dance. That's a fact. So I just want to see you dance in the way I described because that type of dancing Salsa is what thrills me personally. You are quite beautiful and you deserve to be able to show that in what the way salsa as I describe it will show. You have so much potential from what the video shows, and so you might as well conquer the way it is conventionally danced. It's not that hard. Actually, I do believe there is a lot of originality still left to be discovered in salsa, so I don't necessarily agree with the correctness of a typical salsa dance instructor. I suggest you watch the movie, El Cantante, starring Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez, in which you will see the type of street salsa dancing that is common in Latin America and the US, and also the type of music I am talking about. I must warn you that Hector Lavoe, was a heroine addict, and so a good portion of the movie is hard to watch in that respect, but the musical and dancing elements are true to a culture that really exists and is, simply, extremely fun.

Keep it up,

Jose.

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Okay, I just saw the couple video, and I'm sorry for my recommendations--you know what I'm talking about already. Wow. That's good. I'm sorry to all of you who thought I had seen the couple video; I did not.

Congratulations.

However--I apologize in advance--Salsa does require shaking your torso, and your bottom half. I hope you will accept this fact and find it comfortable. You were good, very good--but there is another aspect of it ... it's when you are completely in the moment, you are the music, and you're body is ready to explode, but you are taming it, hence the shaking; you love life, hence the trembling; your body becomes the music, and there is no other way to experience the music except by trying to embody all the complexity and "chaos" of the Salsa music. I don't know--that's how I experience it.

Sorry, if I've annoyed you further. :blink:

Jose

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Okay, I just saw the couple video, and I'm sorry for my recommendations--you know what I'm talking about already. Wow. That's good. I'm sorry to all of you who thought I had seen the couple video; I did not.

Congratulations.

However--I apologize in advance--Salsa does require shaking your torso, and your bottom half. I hope you will accept this fact and find it comfortable. You were good, very good--but there is another aspect of it ... it's when you are completely in the moment, you are the music, and you're body is ready to explode, but you are taming it, hence the shaking; you love life, hence the trembling; your body becomes the music, and there is no other way to experience the music except by trying to embody all the complexity and "chaos" of the Salsa music. I don't know--that's how I experience it.

Sorry, if I've annoyed you further. :blink:

Jose

No, look, I agree with what you said about shaking, and even about the dances that I put here being tamed. But I think it's wrong to give advice to someone what style and what movements they should do, because I think dancing should be about self expression, and not about trying to look in a certain way. Personally, I find it annoying when someone tries to prescribe what they like to what I should do.

I sometimes have similar thoughts to yours when I watch someone else dance, like "they should do more of X, they should be less Y" but as long as it's a matter of style, I don't tell it to them, or at least not as an advice as something they should change.

I don't mind you saying I have room for improvement (which was implied). I don't find it insulting, so there is no need for further compliments that I danced well, nor need for any apology.

I used to have a dance teacher who always said the truth to his students (sometimes in a pretty nasty way). As a funny example: he once told someone that her pirouette looks like a chicken taking a dump. But putting this little comment aside...

He brought out 110% from his students, he drove us to our limit. He was harsh, and he made good dancers.

I loved his lessons. I much preferred this tough approach than a padded, pink room where all you get is sugar-talk.

So criticism is welcome (as long as it's about technique, not about style).

So let's just end it by saying that I understand your way of thinking, I am not at all insulted and I appreciate your music recommendations.

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Let me finish this off by saying the following:

This movie, El Cantante, and its music album, is an historical document. Marc Anthony is known for his Spanish ballads. However, he is primarily prolific in his Salsa music. However, his Salsa music is Salsa interpretations often of famous Spanish language ballads. A poignant example is his Salsa song, Hasta Que Te Conoci, which was first made famous by the great Spanish (Mexican) ballad singer, Juan Gabriel, who was also an intimate collaborator of the great Mexican ballad (female) singer, Rocio Durcal. The ballad version of this song is phenomenal; Anthony’s Salsa version is something special—because you can dance to it! However, typically, Marc Anthony’s Salsa songs are softer, not that intense, not that explosive. But his voice is one of the greatest polular music voices I have ever heard in my life! However, the early Marc Anthony is obviously extremely talented, and in hindsight, in my opinion, a musical genius because of his originality in style and his “erudition” in Latin music as such.

And so with the album, El Cantante, Marc Anthony proves himself to the world as really a master in the Salsa genre, because he executes the style of Salsa of Hector Lavoe (a hero of his and of many Salsa musicians) to the tee, except that it is strangely still ‘Marc Anthony’.

So this is Juan Gabriel’s version of Hasta Que Te Conoci (the original):

Juan Gabriel - Hasta Que Te Conoci (Since I've Know You)

And here is Marc Anthony’s Salsa version (please wait for the Salsa part, because in my musically humble opinion it is a beautiful transition):

Marc Anthony - Hasta Que Te Conoci

So, now I ask you please to find and listen to Hector Lavoe’s Aguanile. And then I want you, if you will, to find and listen to Marc Anthony’s version of Aguanile. I think this will be an important Salsa experience for all of you. Besides that, you will build up to the experience of either Aguanile version, and experience a song that is quite unique in the Salsa realm, (well, there is obvious African influences—but it is still primarily Latin!)

So enjoy, please …

Jose Gainza.

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Thanks for sharing these, Ifat, they're lovely dances. I am not really familiar with dance so I'm not the best reviewer, but I enjoyed how controlled and deliberate your movements were. This was especially clear in the dance with the other girls, who didn't execute the motions as precisely.

Also, in the the dance with the guy you did an awful lot of spinning. Doesn't that make you terribly dizzy?

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Thanks for sharing these, Ifat, they're lovely dances. I am not really familiar with dance so I'm not the best reviewer, but I enjoyed how controlled and deliberate your movements were. This was especially clear in the dance with the other girls, who didn't execute the motions as precisely.

Also, in the the dance with the guy you did an awful lot of spinning. Doesn't that make you terribly dizzy?

^_^ No, it was alright. Though, first time I went ballroom dancing, I danced with this crazy guy. He seemed confident in his dance moves and he was leading strongly enough so that even though I knew nothing at all (no dance moves), I could still follow his lead and dance. Unfortunately, he was spinning me like crazy (like 8 spins non-stop and then again). And even though I was enjoying it at the beginning, after a while I got seriously dizzy and nauseous, and got a headache that lasted into the next day. Haha, gosh, a story that's hard to forget.

And what you said about my movements (being controlled) is true - nice observation. You know, I think it may sound a bit weird, but I think that learning Objectivism made my movements more precise. As my thinking changed and became more organized and integrated, the way I saw and understood myself changed in a similar way, and as a result the way I dance became more precise.

Now, I'm thinking how is the later (way of moving) a result of the former (person's view of him/her-self). My answer to myself is that dancing is self-expression, of both emotions (and the underlying ideas that bring forth the emotions), how these emotions are experienced, and also how these ideas relate to the dancer.

If someone hears a sad song, they can feel sadness and the way it would relate to them is a desire to be alone. So in movements, this would be expressed by closing one's body (like bracing oneself, or curling up like a ball, putting the head low into the folded arms, etc). However, if the dancer is more open about pain, or if they see pain as something heroic, they will view themselves as heroic for feeling sorrow, and they would have more open movements when they dance to a sad song, like open arms, big leg movements, face to the audience.

So to summarize a dancer expresses both the emotion and how they think it relates to them.

If someone has a clear understanding of who he/she is, there are no random elements in how they experience a certain emotion or how it relates to them. If a person does not understand himself then they would have many different reactions to the same thing, non of which they grasp clearly. And when this goes to self expression in movements, it becomes more like a bunch of random movements and lack of control over the movements. It is the best way to express confusion.

Two final notes: One - All this is true for people who dance as a reaction to music. If someone is just doing some movements without expressing any emotion then non of this applies to them, even though it's still some form of self expression, though of a different kind.

Two - The translation from the mental experience to moves is subconscious.

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And what you said about my movements (being controlled) is true - nice observation. You know, I think it may sound a bit weird, but I think that learning Objectivism made my movements more precise. As my thinking changed and became more organized and integrated, the way I saw and understood myself changed in a similar way, and as a result the way I dance became more precise.

Now, I'm thinking how is the later (way of moving) a result of the former (person's view of him/her-self). My answer to myself is that dancing is self-expression, of both emotions (and the underlying ideas that bring forth the emotions), how these emotions are experienced, and also how these ideas relate to the dancer.

If someone hears a sad song, they can feel sadness and the way it would relate to them is a desire to be alone. So in movements, this would be expressed by closing one's body (like bracing oneself, or curling up like a ball, putting the head low into the folded arms, etc). However, if the dancer is more open about pain, or if they see pain as something heroic, they will view themselves as heroic for feeling sorrow, and they would have more open movements when they dance to a sad song, like open arms, big leg movements, face to the audience.

So to summarize a dancer expresses both the emotion and how they think it relates to them.

If someone has a clear understanding of who he/she is, there are no random elements in how they experience a certain emotion or how it relates to them. If a person does not understand himself then they would have many different reactions to the same thing, non of which they grasp clearly. And when this goes to self expression in movements, it becomes more like a bunch of random movements and lack of control over the movements. It is the best way to express confusion.

Two final notes: One - All this is true for people who dance as a reaction to music. If someone is just doing some movements without expressing any emotion then non of this applies to them, even though it's still some form of self expression, though of a different kind.

Two - The translation from the mental experience to moves is subconscious.

The ideas you expressed here are very similar to those in the essay "Dance Movements and Sense of Life" by another Objectivist (link).

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^_^ No, it was alright. Though, first time I went ballroom dancing, I danced with this crazy guy. He seemed confident in his dance moves and he was leading strongly enough so that even though I knew nothing at all (no dance moves), I could still follow his lead and dance. Unfortunately, he was spinning me like crazy (like 8 spins non-stop and then again). And even though I was enjoying it at the beginning, after a while I got seriously dizzy and nauseous, and got a headache that lasted into the next day. Haha, gosh, a story that's hard to forget.

Ha! ^_^ Well, I was wondering if there was a trick you learn, to avoid nausea or losing orientation. Figure skaters somehow manage to maintain excellent balance while being thrown around and spun in the air.

And what you said about my movements (being controlled) is true - nice observation. You know, I think it may sound a bit weird, but I think that learning Objectivism made my movements more precise. As my thinking changed and became more organized and integrated, the way I saw and understood myself changed in a similar way, and as a result the way I dance became more precise.

I don’t think it sounds weird. From the way you describe it, it sounds like Objectivism helped you to identify the meaning of your emotions, which allowed you to better express them. Also, you mention having "random elements in how they experience a certain emotion", or the presence of confusion. This can happen if you have mixed premises. Imagine trying to express both pride and guilt simultaneously! But Objectivism gives you moral certainty, and with that emotional consistency. The emotions you experience are purer, and therefore easier to concretize, than those of other dancers.

Or maybe you just have a better understanding than others of the relationship between the movement in dance and emotion. They may be just trying to copy a routine, without understanding it. What do you think?

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The ideas you expressed here are very similar to those in the essay "Dance Movements and Sense of Life" by another Objectivist (link).

Great article, and a nice twist at the end. ^_^

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Ha! ^_^ Well, I was wondering if there was a trick you learn, to avoid nausea or losing orientation. Figure skaters somehow manage to maintain excellent balance while being thrown around and spun in the air.

There is a trick. But for me, it only works to a certain limit. It's called "focus". You focus your eyes on one location, and keep your head fixed on that position while spinning until you can't hold it anymore and then you quickly rotate it 180 to look at the same location again.

I don’t think it sounds weird. From the way you describe it, it sounds like Objectivism helped you to identify the meaning of your emotions, which allowed you to better express them. Also, you mention having "random elements in how they experience a certain emotion", or the presence of confusion. This can happen if you have mixed premises. Imagine trying to express both pride and guilt simultaneously! But Objectivism gives you moral certainty, and with that emotional consistency. The emotions you experience are purer, and therefore easier to concretize, than those of other dancers.

Yep. Well said.

Or maybe you just have a better understanding than others of the relationship between the movement in dance and emotion. They may be just trying to copy a routine, without understanding it. What do you think?

I don't think that this understanding takes part in shaping the movements. I would dance just the same even if I did not consciously understand why I move the way I do and what motivates my dancing.

Second thing is that the alternative is not: copying a routine vs. understanding the emotion-dancing relationship. The alternative is copying a routine vs. expressing yourself by dancing.

A person can have no clue what motivates him to move or what is the reason for the great enjoyment in dancing, and still be a terrific dancer with plenty of "soul".

I think this is much like any other profession in this respect; either a person loves his job, and he does it well, or he doesn't enjoy it and he copies the best he can, what he saw others doing (or what he was taught). Someone who wants to be known as a good programmer, but who does not enjoy coding, will do a stinking, mindless job. To be good at something you need to love doing it. True for dancing and true for any other thing. (this was just a side thought that connects to what I said before)

One last thing: A person can still be a very "clean" dancer (by that I mean precise, straight movements) and still not enjoy dancing - if they have a really good teacher and they work hard to automatize that way of moving. But you know, there is stretching your body as a matter of good practice, and there is stretching your body as an expression of some intense emotion - and they do not look the same. Good copying can only help to a limit.

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The ideas you expressed here are very similar to those in the essay "Dance Movements and Sense of Life" by another Objectivist (link).

Great article, though we were talking about different things (that intersected in part). He was talking about the meaning of the style of movements - which was an evaluation of how the moves appear and the message they communicate. I was talking more about what dancing is to the dancer - though he does go into it somewhat as well. He assumes that dancing is an expression of the dancer's inner state (for example - big straight leaps indicate joy and freedom - whose joy and freedom? the dancer's. It is an inner state of the dancer, made visible to others through the movements).

And under the assumption that dancing is an expression of the dancer's inner state he does show a connection between the state of mind of the dancer and its expression in movements, which is what I was talking about. But the PoV is different.

Thanks for giving me the link.

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He was talking about the meaning of the style of movements ...

I guess you didn't read the last line. ^_^

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This is a salsa show of 3 girls (one of them is me (purple shirt)). It was a final test in a salsa course me and the other girls in the video took.

I did the choreography (almost all of it). ...

Ifat: a nice routine, very fluidly danced! For myself, I generally find a dance's steps are challenging enough without worrying too much about style or fitting it all into a choreography!
The ideas you expressed here are very similar to those in the essay "Dance Movements and Sense of Life" by another Objectivist (link).
Betsy: I've added a link to your essay from the Waltz Resources page at the San Diego Viennese Waltz Club. Something to think about between dances --

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