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Salsa & Mambo Video Reviews


Masacote Entertainment

Music Interpretation 101 for Salsa Dancers vol 1

Level: Beg-Adv

Style: Any style

Content: Pulse explanation Timing exercises, Clave Explanation, Variations of Clave, Visual Graphics (to help you understand), 5 Footwork Patterns

General Comment: If you want to learn musicality to apply it to your dancing, what more could you ask for than to be taught by someone who is both a professional dancer and a professional musician? And someone who is outstanding at both? We are talking of Joel Massicott of course, known in the salsa scene not only for his amazing performances with the Masacote dance company but also for his music exploring the edges of salsa and jazz.

This DVD is called salsa 101, but in actual fact it provides material for the novice as well as for the experienced dancer. It starts by teaching the fundamentals of music timing, what kids learn when they first study music theory and what most dancers (and teachers!) have never even heard of and that sadly is almost never taught in salsa classes. The explanation is clear and facilitated by the use of simple diagrams. Then Joel takes you along the second thing kids are usually taught in music classes: how to clap basic rhythms, from the core beat up to the more challenging root of salsa music: the clave; this is another element sorely missed in 99% of salsa classes.

From now on, the DVD increases the challenges and you will be taught to understand (via explanation and diagrams) and clap (guided by 3 musicians) both simple and more complex syncopations, the spice of Latin music. Joel then applies these syncopations to a series of footwork patterns (shines); this part is not salsa 101 anymore and will surely entertain even more advanced dancers: the shines are very nice, they involve both footwork and body work, and will test your timing since they play heavily with syncopations and they are executed to a great piece from Joel's. great music, albeit not the simplest salsa you have ever heard.

Putting all this together I can hardly imagine a single dancer who would not benefit from this DVD nor one teacher who could not bring some of these ideas to his next salsa course. As always, the highest standard delivered by the Masacote partnership.

Reviewed by Fabio of SalsaIsGood - Reccomended

Ladies' Salsa Styling & Movement vol 1

Level: Beg-Adv

Style: Any style

Content: LAdies styling, body movement and exercises

General Comment:Ana Masacote has been one of the leading female salsa stars for many years now and she is well known for doing everything well: whether it is teaching or performing you are safe to expect a 5 star performance from her. This DVD also matches the expectations. Even with so many ladies styling DVDs around, Ana's stands out as among the 2-3 best in absolute. It has it all: rich content, solid technique and attention to detail.

Assuming you have an understanding of the basic salsa steps, Ana takes you from the fundamentals of posture and body isolation to styling and synchronisation between different movement both in solo work and in partner work. I took a private class with Ana a long time ago and I remember her ability to give very clear visual descriptions of what I was supposed to do. This ability is displayed also in this DVD, to help you visualise what you need to achieve in your posture and in your basic walking as well as arm and hand work. Finally, Ana suggests some simple exercises which you can incorporate in your salsa practise and leads you into them to ensure you have all you need to learn..

Reviewed by Fabio of SalsaIsGood - Reccomended







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