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Salsa & Mambo Video Reviews


Nuno and Vanda

Partner work

Level: Advanced

Style: LA

Content: Turn patterns.

General Comment: This DVD contains 6 turn patterns in pure LA style, that is On1 and with sharp, energetic and emphatic body language. The turn patterns are fairly long, so don’t be turned off by the fact that there are only 6 of them; if you do like the style, there is enough material to make this DVD a worthwhile addition to your collection. This is a simple production, but well done, and it contains all you need to learn the material presented. Each turn pattern is first described by the leader, then by the follower; this is followed by a version with voice counter and then repeated again twice at slow pace with music, from two different angles. There is only one camera view, but the explanations are clear, the dancers are technically good and the demonstration precise; in other words, no excuse for not learning what is presented.

The turn patterns are of advanced level, containing mostly standard moves organised in an original way, but, here and there, you will also find some novel ideas, the most interesting of which are based on clever copas. The demonstrations are what I would call ‘performance style’, seasoned by body waves and sharp poses; it thus comes as some surprise that in the final clip all the turn patterns are executed in a free style routine, danced to a fairly slow pace son, in which the dancers look far more natural and everything comes to life. Pity that the order of the turn patterns is not followed and several extra decorations are added here and there; the lack of visual aid will make it not obvious to distinguish which turn pattern is which.

The instructional part is not very long, some 40ish minutes, and the DVD is supplemented with a series of performances, displaying the dancers in their full versatility, from salsa to tango, swing, hip hop, contemporary Brazilian and cha cha cha; good dancers.. whether you like the style or not

Reviewed by Fabio from SalsaIsGood - Good

Partner work Vol 2

Level: Int/Advanced

Style: LA

Content: Turn patterns, Shines.

General Comment: This is a very well produced DVD, with 2 synchronised angle views (side and top) and zoomed in sections which allow you to follow all details, good explanations and repetitions of demonstrations for you to practise following the instructors; all this in a very since filming setting which is pleasing to the eye. Thumbs up for all this to both dancers and the producers.

The content is divided into three parts: 8 partner work moves, 3 shines and 2 moves which Nuno and Vanda call 'salsa-tango', effectively two more partnerwork moves with a tango taste. This is salsa on1, both for what regards the counting and the feel, with sharp and fast passages, seasoned with some Cuban-inspired arm work. It will probably best suit dancers who prefer strong colors and emphasis to smooth and cool dancing, but nothing is over the top and with a bit of practise the turn patterns are probably fairly leadable, maybe not with any dancer who passes by your club, but likely with most proficient ones. Some of the passages are original, other are taken from the Cuban and LA repertoire and interestingly mixed. Each turn pattern is first danced to music, then explained in the leader and follower parts, then demonstrated again to counting. The teaching is good and exhaustive and the demos precise. A good product.

Reviewed by Fabio from SalsaIsGood - Good


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