Learn to Salsa dance with Edie, The Salsa FREAK!!
“Dear Edie,
I read your “What its like to compete and have a partner …” column. Good stuff, but it was written mostly for women. I have an big issue with my dance partner, and I was wondering if you could give me your perspective.
She recently moved here from [another country]. I think she is the most talented Latin dancer in the whole [city]. She’s a real natural. I have a zillion moves that we practice and use together. She also teaches me some really good moves.She keeps insisting that with really good dancers both the Man and the Woman lead – at the same time! Now this is news to me. My understanding is that there is a leader and a follower, and a good leader will tune into the energy of the follower, and adjust his dance according to the mood of the follower. But she keeps trying to tell me that the women can in effect back-lead moves, that is initiate a turn. We are even suppose to be able to both lead at the same time! So far, all that’s happened is that I’m about to start to turn her in one direction, and at the same time she decides to start herself turning in a different way. So there is a near collision, we get thrown way off, and then I start asking myself why am I dancing with her?

Now I’m trying to be understanding and open minded. If I were the woman, I would not want to always be lead around the dance floor, NEVER being able to decide for myself when and how to turn (this is part of why I like Salsa dancing so much, I get to coordinate/execute all these moves). Also, I am not from Costa Rica like she is, and for all I know maybe some people in Costa Rica really can do this! But I think she just frustrated with some other things and this is how she’s taking it out on me.

I tell her I want to tune into her mood/expresion more and respond to her. I’ll even let her lead me (yes, I’ll even dance the woman’s part), so long as it’s clear we have switched roles. But I want to draw the line when she wants to have two leaders at the same time! To me that’s just out of control.

Am I right? Have you ever heard of man and woman leading each other at the same time? In all my time dancing I have never had this issue with anyone else. On the other hand, I’ve never had such a good partner.

What do you think? Any advice would be appreciated.”
– The Other Half

I will leave this question up to some of my friends here at Dancer Hangout…

Happy Dancing!
– Edie, The Salsa FREAK!!
Edie The Salsa FREAK!! Website