An Interview with Nancy Salsa
by Tamara Marie, Spanish Con Salsa
Nancy shares how she learned English using music and why learning Spanish can enhance your dance experience.
Nancy Salsa of Sentimiento Dance Company in Baltimore, Maryland.
Q: Where are you from?
A: I was born and raised in Santiago, Dominican Republic. I moved to Baltimore in 2008.
Yo soy Cibaeña, oriunda de Santiago, Republica Dominicana. Me mude a la ciudad de Baltimore, en Maryland desde el 2008.
Q: How many languages do you speak?
A: 2, I speak Spanish and English.
Q: What role, if any, did music play in your learning process?
A: Music played a huge factor in my language learning. My English teacher would supplement the lessons with a song. During each class we would analyze the lyrics and using the dictionary, we would piece together the story or what the song was about.
Comencé bailar en el 2008 cuando me mude a la ciudad de Baltimore. Estaba buscando como distraerme ya que tenia un familiar muy enfermo. El baile me ofrecio la oportunidad de divertirme y distraerme de una manera sana. Mi padre es musico y yo era cantante de un coro asi que la musica siempre ha sido muy importante en mi vida.
Q: Do you think speaking Spanish can make you a better dancer?
A: It enhances the experience, absolutely! I believe when you can understand what the songs talk about, you can bring that out in your dancing. Also, salsa is a Latin art form. I believe it's important for people to understand the stories being told in the songs.
Creo que la abilidad de bailar no depende de si uno entiende el idioma o no. Pero, si creo que cuando uno puede entender de lo que hablan las canciones, la conexion con la musica es doble. La Salsa es una expresion cultural, es muy bonito entender el contexto de donde nace este arte.
Q: If you could give any advice to a fellow salsero/salsera that wants to learn Spanish but feels like it’s not possible, what would you tell them?
A: Try to immerse yourself in it! The more you HAVE to use it, the better. I also recommend learning through music. As a salsa lover there is already a connection there, so use it to your advantage. Understanding how words are used to convey ideas in songs is a great way to pick up new vocabulary.
Q: Now for the tough question...what is your all-time favorite song?
A: It is very hard for me to pick a favorite song! If I had to pick, Incondicional by Prince Royce is at the top of the list. This was Sentimiento’s first dance routine.
Es muy difícil para mi elegir solamente una cancion. Si tuviera que elegir Incondicional de Prince Royce estaría en esta lista ya que fue la primera rutina de Sentimiento.
Q: Are there any upcoming projects you'd like to tell the dance community about?
A: Sentimiento has a few upcoming projects with our ladies teams, and we are looking for some good guys that may be interested in joining us. Check us out at www.sentimientodance.com
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