19 jun 2008

I hate to keep returning to this show, but I have to say it's getting harder and harder to stay objective about what they are promoting.

Tonight I was, I suppose, fortunate in that I missed the segment where the couple dances "Argentine Tango." At the end of the show I saw a snippet, and it contained the same exact "back of the head boleo" as this clip from Nuit's blog, which was a few seasons back. Later, I went to IMDB to read the recap and apparently one of the judges suggested that the woman "could have been a bit sleazier, which is what the dance calls for." I sincerely hope that the recap is some kind of misquote, although my gut tells me it's probably not.

I don't need to tell you guys, that makes me pretty sick.

Later in the show another couple danced a "salsa" routine. The woman happened to be Cuban and had salsa in her blood but was noticeably uncomfortable during the learning phase with the choreography she was presented with. At one point in the routine she was to stand on her hands and do a kind of stag split position. Her reaction to that was that it seemed like something out of Cirque du Soleil, which is certainly a reasonable reaction given her perspective. Subsequently, she was having a lot of difficulty learning the routine and the choreographer made the comment that "she's not a real salsa dancer, she dances street salsa."

To me, that comment in itself fairly screams of the incompetence of the speaker. In my mind, this guy doesn't demonstrate a genuine, visceral knowledge of dance, at least in what has been shown. He demonstrates a knowledge of flash and movement, if anything. But to dismiss the roots of a dance is to misunderstand the dance completely.

Incidentally, this was the same guy who choreographed the "Argentine Tango" as well. His name is Alex Da Silva and word needs to get out that there are some of us who believe he's a fraud, at least in what he is passing himself off as an authority on this show.


Meanwhile, the SFTX kicked off with the preliminary milonga at CELLspace, which was as packed as I've ever seen it. I showed up to get my participation kit, said hi to some friends, ate a cookie...and went back home. There wasn't much room to move on the dance floor, and besides I didn't bring my shoes anyway. Wanted to save my energy for the rest of the week. I have to say, I loved some of the cortinas I heard--I think they were from Suba. I caught few bits of M.I.A. and the theme from Once Upon a Time in China (it sounded westernized so I'm guessing it was from the sequel set in Nevada).

Not entirely sure what to expect from the exchanges and not sure I'll have anything of worth to contribute. I feel that so much of what I know in the dance is just an "at this point" kind of thing and as such I have reticence in making a confident statement about anything. Oh well, guess we'll see how it goes.

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