9+1 Choreographies that changed the Salsa World!

Do you ever wonder how we ended up dancing Salsa like we do? Why old shows look nothing like today’s shows? These are 9+1 choreographies that changed the way people saw, thought or even danced Salsa after their debut.

We do not say these are the best shows ever made.. or that even these videos are the best versions of the shows. Not even that these shows invented the wheel … but what we do know and say is that they started a movement, a trend… Every single one of them offered something to what we now call Salsa dancing.

  1. We couldn’t start our list with anyone else than the Mambo King, Eddie Torres and his dancers. This is the last group choreo Eddy made for his team. Mon ti! Several tributes and remakes have been made since then by his students… so you can find versions of it by Franklin Diaz and Adolfo Indacochea among others.  In this video you can see two very young Frankie Martinez and Franklin Diaz dancing.

2. Andrian y Annita: A couple that paved the way for all the competitive couples that followed. Their high energy, precision, acrobatic style even costumes were copied to a t.. you can find many world champions today following in their footsteps and the modern acrobatic craze that is today originates in them.

3.  Yamulee Dance Company: if you have seen this video before (chances are you have) then it must haunt you day and night… This is not what put Yamulee on the world map, but it started a frenzy over their style to the masses. Teachers and dancers flew from all around the world to have Osmar Perrones choreograph them after this and you could see his style danced on almost every stage in the world.

4. If you want to talk about a dancer that was ahead off his time then you have to talk about Frankie Martinez. He was everywhere, admired by everyone, he danced like noone else (and he still does) and he took Eddie Torres style and made it something completely different… He created his own style and now you can mostly find him in his studio in New York devoted to his craft. This solo performance showed the whole world how powerful and complex a solo should be.

5. Adolfo Indacochea and Carla Voconi: Another Eddie Torres student (of a later generation than Frankie). Adolfo is the major reason for the mambo fever that has taken the Salsa world by storm the last 6-7 years. And this is how he broke through…

6. Tropical Gem. One name and a huge history that follows it. Out of all the shows they have done this was by far the most influential, it was the one that broke the barriers of Salsa, raised the bar and showed everyone that the game had been changed. Those of us who saw it live still remember the shivers it sent down our spines.

7. Second entry for this gentleman right here since his influence can be seen still everywhere you look. Along with mambo and the NY style, Adolfo brought with him the revival of Pachanga… No, no none of these are his invention but he did contribute a lot to them and he is the main reason you can find them on every stage you look. This was the show that put him and Pachanga on everyones list..

8. Not one but two legends on this next show: Maykel Fonts and Juan  Matos. Their partnership produced one of the most iconic shows in our industry. The mixture of flamenco elements with rumba and afro, along an elaborate choreography made people copy them in style. We can see this trend of fusion between mambo and afro-rumba being reignited in shows and workshops nowadays as well…

9. Karel Flores:  Last but not least a show that had an impact in not just the way artists created a show but also was a game changer on how people experienced it… or in this case, how they could live it first hand. After her exit from Yamulee DC, Karel Flores made a decision that set the tone on even how events sell their product to the audiences. She is not the founder of Bootcamps as she says but we say that she is the one that brought them to the Salsa world of today with a bang…

And since we are a Greek blog we just couldn’t not talk about some of our own local based artists!

9+1. Salsa Sinners: The very first greek team, that for over a decade has traveled, performed and taught all around the world. This, although not their first choreography, is definitely one of their most iconic ones. The decision of going on stage with no dancing costumes whatsoever and no uniformity made them stand out wherever they performed. As a team, their format and career has been copied by many, both in Greece and abroad…

Salsa is a relatively new dance style and it has the magic of being able to incorporate other styles and techniques without loosing it’s essence. That is why it constantly changes and evolves. Trends come and go and those of us old enough to experience it over the years, know that there is nothing absolute in Salsa. But we’ll talk about all that in another post..

Untill then…

Stay on the Dance Floor 😉 and follow our lead on Facebook and Instagram

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