KWENDA LIMA

This is going to be the longest article I’ve ever written and probably you’ve ever read. This is also the craziest thing I’ve ever done for my blog in 2018. And the most beautiful one.

In the last months I met a lot of new people from different countries, I made new friends, I shared lovely & interesting moments with them. It’s just that time, I guess, when my social life was booming!!! And I took my chances. I absorbed information like a sponge, taking the most of it.

In the middle of this communication blossom I discovered Kwenda Lima. I was told that he is one of the very first kizomba teachers in Europe. I would call him the “God-father”. At once I opened his webpage, and I realized that he is a MUST part of my blog-encyclopedy. He is the missing master-peace for my historical research about the kizomba roots in Europe.

You’d be laughing to hear that, but I believe it’s important to make this information available for the most curious dancers, who want to know how kizomba arrived to Europe. If you ask anyone about the eldest teachers they know, you’d hear names like Albir Rojas, Tony Pirata, Pitchu, etc… But these teachers also had their teachers. And Kwenda Lima is one of them. He is actually the teacher of Albir.

A couple of months before my trip to meet Kwenda Lima I sent him a long email. I explained who I was and why I wanted to see him. I got a reply from his assistant the very same day inviting me to Lisbon to see his dancing school and to have our interview in person. In a few days a booked my flight and in a few weeks I was already on my way to Portugal, thinking hard about what I wanted to ask him, writing down some notes in order not to forget anything important during the interview.

The day before I was asked to assist to Kwenda Lima’s Kaizen Dance workshop, taking place in his Kaizen Dance studio at 6 am in the morning to meet the sunrise! I’ve never had a dancing workshop that early hours, to say the least!!)). That sounded so special!! I was excited and I didn’t even mind to wake up at 5 in the morning. I knew I would love it.

The place was enormous, very spacious. High ceilings, lots of windows opened to the sky, the smell of essence and calm relaxing music. It was still dark when we started. Everyone was lying on the floor in silence… In the beginning it looked like yoga class. Kwenda invited me to join them and I took a place as close to him as possible to be able to watch him…

After 2 hours of a very unusual dance (his own creature) we sat on the floor surrounding him for a talk. He pulled a card from the deck and explained its meaning to us as a Message Of The Day. People were asking questions, he was replying, like a priest in a church after the mesa. I fell asleep right there with the first sun rays, listening to their conversation mixed with an incredibly beautiful music tape…

THE INTERVIEW

I would like to start by the slogan on your web “Dance kizomba with awareness“. I would like you to translate the meaning of this expression into simple words.

Kwenda Lima: “With awareness” means that when you do something aware of it, you respect it. You do it simple. You don’t make it look something inaccessible. When you are aware of doing something, you do it in a very careful way, not to hurt people, but to help them to improve themselves. It doesn’t have to be kizomba, it could be anything. But that’s why I said “kizomba with awareness”. We get into these situations in any dance because it’s a famous dance, it’s an opportunity, which is fair. So you jump into it, but in terms of your personal things, your ego, etc. you don’t think of what this instrument is doing to you or what people bring into this instrument. This is awareness.

You are from Cabe Verde. All those dances like Mora, Funana, Batuque, Coladeira, Tabanca and more.., can you dance all of them?

Kwenda Lima: Yes

Why do you particularly of all these dances teach kizomba?

Kwenda Lima: I teach kizomba because I wanted to reach the world with a different message.

What is the message?

Kwenda Lima: I could teach, for example, Morna, Batuque, but with those dances it’s difficult to open the door into a new culture. Kizomba is much easier. It was much easier to infiltrate, to be in someone else, to open someone else’ s house and to present the product. Those ones are very specific. They are not what every culture would accept. Kizomba is what people somehow need, because it’s closer. It’s like a hug. Of course, you have the sensual part, like people say. But the most important is that you are close to that person. That’s what people need in this present life. They need to understand their own emotions, to be close to other people, to be touched. That’s why kizomba is much easier as a tool to reach public.

But others are also couple dances, right? You also touch each other…

Kwenda Lima:  Some of them are couple ones. Batuque, for example, not. Funana yes, it is! But there’s a moment when there’s not. Coladeira is different: you have contact, but it’s not really a couple dance. Tabanka is not a couple one. Landun is what you dance in a wedding. But the way they dance is different. Funana, for example, is a ¨happy¨ dance, very energetic.

Like salsa?

Kwenda Lima:  It’s faster. It’s really strong and It has nothing to do with salsa. But it’s different the way a couple works. Morna, yes, it’s closer to kizomba in the way of holding, the way of being there, but it’s not something that you could teach, because it’s very boring to teach. All of this you have to take into account: what is going to be fun and knowledge at the same time? You cannot just drop things like that. Morna you can teach for about 10-15 minutes, or when you teach kizomba, you can give some Morna in-between (what I used to do before), but it’s not the dance to reach culture, because it’ very boring for people.

There we answered the question why kizomba conquered so quickly European hearts.

It attracts people because of the closeness, but it doesn’t attract others because of the same closeness. Some people avoid it because for them it’s too close and others love it because of the teasy part, the play between man and woman.

Do people miss closeness in their real life?

Kwenda Lima:  Yes. Somehow people are looking for THAT person, for THAT relationship, to be understood, to be respected. But of course there’s a group of people who are not looking for this kind of things. They just want to enjoy. The music is beautiful even if they don’t understand it. Although you don’t understand the lyrics, but there’s the energy in kizomba and a very strong sexual part, that can unconsciously attract you, and you don’t know why.

Good. Now let’s get to the point: who brought kizomba to Europe. When did you get to know about it?

Kwenda Lima:  Always. I started dancing when I was about 10 yo. Now I’m 40. It’s hard to tell you who brought kizomba to Europe.

If you don’t know, who knows then? 🙂

Kwenda Lima:  I will explain you why. My point of view: any palop, any African immigrant, especially capeverdians, angolans, mozambique, guinea bissau, when moving to Europe, of corse they bring with them their music and dance.

So, the first immigrants to Europe brought kizomba.

Why? And How? – Because when you come to a new country – you bring your culture with you. They were listening their music at home, inviting their colleagues from work and new European friends, who asked immigrants what was this music and how to dance to it. In Lisbon there have been kizomba discotheques for many many years, but they were for a more closed African population. There were some few portugués, but not that much. In Holland there’s a huge community of Capeverdians, in France and in Luxembourg as well. Everywhere, where you had a community of capeverdians, angolans and mozambique, kizomba was there! ¨Pasada¨ at that time. we called it “Pasada”. The word “kizomba” is very new.

My generation was growing calling this dance “pasada”.

Really? You mean Kizomba and Pasada is the same dance?

Kwenda Lima:  Yes. But before people would say “pasada”. Then, there is another side, that you can’t see. It’s the commercial part. If we talk about the commercial part, I can tell you who brought kizomba to Europe.

Who?

Kwenda Lima:  It’s very important to understand this difference. Kizomba has always been there (in Europe), but someone started to teach it, which is different. When we start teaching kizomba, which happened here, in Portugal, then here you would have Ze Barbosa. He started to teach pasada. Then Petchu started to teach too, but at that time he wasn’t into kizomba, he was in African traditional dances. And even before Ze Barbosa there had been other two guys, who used to teach in B-Leza, which is an old dance place.

Oh, I was recommended to go there tonight!

Kwenda Lima:  No, but this is the new one. Before there was another very well known B-Leza, but in a different place. They started teaching there, but they were not known. Then I started teaching with Ze Barbosa and Avelino.

Did you learn from them?

No, no… we learned by dancing, because it’s the part of our culture. We learned when we were kids by watching. And then we started to create our own way of interpreting kizomba. But no one learned from anyone. I mean, those 5 people: me, Avelino Chantre, Ze Barbosa, Petchu and Tomas Keita. And after came Elliu, Santus and Banderas.

I don’t know any of those names!!

Kwenda Lima:  Those people started here, in Portugal. And then Petchu started AfloLatin Connection. They learned from Petchu. Those ones are portugués and they learned from Petchu. And then I went to London to study and I started teaching kizomba there.

So, it was your first teaching experience in London?

Kwenda Lima:  No, it was here, in Lisbon. But then I went outside and I started to teach it in UK. And for the first festival, which is ¨Africa Dancar¨ in Portugal, I brought my students from London. So, 90% of the festival was from London.

Really?

Kwenda Lima:  The teachers in Portugal started to realize that kizomba went outside. And there were some Polish people, too. It was enough from that very moment to spread the dance. It was already in Poland and UK. Poland started to consume a lot of kizomba, inviting teachers there. The same happened in Spain.

You mean Albir?

Kwenda Lima:  Albir was not in the kizomba at that time. Another guy invited us to teach there. Albir was a student then. Afterwards he decided to come to Portugal to have lessons with me. So I taught him. And now we are in this situation when most of the people know him better than the ones who actually created it, which is nice. Although it started in Spain not with him, but with another guy, who later left Spain. He moved to USA.

You mentioned Poland, UK and Spain. But how did it happen that the capital of Urban kiz is France?

Kwenda Lima:  Festivals went to Paris. The French took the idea of the festival and they started to organize their festivals in Paris, like the Swimming Festival.

The Jazzy’s one?

Kwenda Lima:  No, Jazzy was one of the elements, but it was Stell. Jazzy was a friend of her helping there. So, Swimming was very famous. A lot of French people started to come to learn kizomba. But there was a difference: some people could not accept kizomba because of its closeness, sensuality, etc.. That pushed them to create their own style of being more apart and making new moves (some moves that I don’t know where they come from), because some of them could not make the kizomba steps. So they made a fusion. That became the French Style. With this French Style it jumps to Urban Kiz. Because they were teaching kizomba, but it was not kizomba.

Urban Kiz is not Kizomba. It’s totally different from kizomba. It’s another dance!

You think so?

Kwenda Lima:  Of course!! It has nothing to do with the kizomba. Because if you compare these two things they don’t come with the same basics. You cannot compare salsa and merengue and say “it’s the same dance”. They don’t have the same basics, so you can’t say it’s the same dance.

What is the main difference?

Kwenda Lima:  The main difference is the basics. They can dance under the same music, but even the music is changing… Urban Kiz is like a plant, which to survive needs to be feed from another plant. But afterwards it separates from that plant. This is Urban Kiz.

Why is Urban Kiz so negatively perceived by the Traditional dancers? Why are they so against this change (or better say evolution)? I believe that they both have the right for existence.

Kwenda Lima:  Of course they do! But they have a fear to loose something. The traditional dancers fear to loose the chance to travel, to earn money, to make their business, etc… This is what makes the fight!

The commercial part, you mean?

Kwenda Lima:  Sure! It’s not about the cultural part. Because if you understand the cultural part, you will accept it. You cannot force a person, or I cannot force you to feel kizomba the way I feel it. I can not force you to have the history that you did not have. I went through some things, you went through other different things. Kizomba came to Europe, but the way we embrace kizomba is different. The situations are different, the population is different, the way you interpret life is different, so of course people would need to adapt it to their way. And there the Urban Kiz was born. We said “Ok, I like it, I like all around it, but I don’t quite feel it. I need to put some things from my culture into it.” It’s normal, so it has changed.

Do you dance Urban Kiz?

Kwenda Lima:  I don’t dance Urban Kiz, because it doesn’t make sense for me. I don’t even learn those steps, because I don’t need it. If they play music, I can, I follow the rhythm. For me it’s not something that my body needs, because, if you noticed, the Urban Kiz (of course there are people like everywhere that dance beautifully), but it’s a kind of separation dance at the same time. Women have their moments and men have their moments to do some moves on their own, and most of the times they don’t connect… because their bodies are like robots, somehow. My body doesn’t need this way of dancing, but I still respect it. Because my body needs to exist. I exist. I don’t need to prove it. But in the Urban Kiz way there is an energy to prove.

To prove what?

Kwenda Lima:  Your existence. Energetically yes. If you notice, for example, (it’s a very delicate subject to talk), like in any dance, you can have couples that dance very connected, they follow the rhythm, the rhythm is beautiful and they are identified with this rhythm, which is tin-tin-tin-bum-bum… This music doesn’t make sense for me.

I prefer to eat food, that my body really needs, deserves and feels.

With the music it’s the same. If I dance to this “tin-tin-bum-pff-dun-dun-dunn”, my body gets this information, and it changes something in me. It completely changes my feelings. It’s totally different, if you put, for example, a melody… well written. Because that music they (Urban Kiz Djs) use, it’s not really music. A Dj makes this music, but there is no… juice. Nobody from the Urban Kiz scene can tell me that they play this song in the morning and they can relax. You cannot relax to this music. But some kizomba you can play in the morning and listen to it and enjoy it. But you can’t do it with Urban Kiz.

Why? Instead you can do it during the night. Because you body during the night is weaker. It would accept anything… It’s a game that I don’t agree to play:) It doesn’t make sense for me. It doesn’t make me evolve. The Urban Kiz music makes me go down.

If the Urban people would sit down, understand that the dance is different, they made the basics very structured to become Urban Kiz Dance, they could talk to the musicians to write the structure of the music to make it a bit softer and more beautiful, wow, that would be amazing!! But this kind of music, that being played now, that the Djs are playing and the people are following, for me this is not an evolution. And in the Traditional Kizomba as well.

I’m not taking anyone’s side.

There is music in kizomba that I don’t like. Maybe you don’t understand the lyrics, but sometimes it’s so aggressive. The energy is so aggressive to women. And I don’t dance this. But it’s not about the Urban or Traditional, it’s about the dance itself. It’s about the respect of people, about what you are doing to your body. What you are eating! People eat in Macdonald’s evert day. it’s OK. If you don’t have food, you eat there. But every day?? It makes something to your body. In the end you will have something. Maybe in 10 years you will have something.. Once in some time it’s OK, nothing bad with that, but every day? With the music it’s the same.

Well, some people don’t have much choice.

Kwenda Lima:  Even down there, if the Djs are conscious, if the are not afraid to educate people, because they don’t know! They think the music is correct. They don’t know! Of course people will eat what Djs give them.

What I’m trying to do is to make people think…. Don’t accept whatever!

You do it to your body! Just think about that! Is that the music that you would listen alone, when you are very stable emotionally in your life?

To me it’s a meditation. It was very difficult for me to learn dancing, because I had to learn to trust someone. I’m used to take initiative, so the most difficult part for me in the kizomba was just doing nothing, being relaxed and letting a partner guide me. It took me a long time to manage to live the moment. So, it’s the kizomba, even though Urban, that helps me to relax!!

Kwenda Lima:  You said something very important now, which is “allow someone to lead you, to guide you”. Not because this person is going to force you with his lead.

Because sometimes, we, the men, think “it’s me who leads…” No, it’s the woman who allows you to lead her!

But in Urban Kiz you are not creating this link. There is a moment when a woman is independent. Even the way men lead you is not natural and organic for your body.

Why?? Now you dance Kaizen. There are a lot of very strange movements in there.

Kwenda Lima:  Yea, but those movements, for example, (he stood up and demonstrated me a couple of them), are organic movements. What is not organic is when you walk like this! (And he moved in a very ¨dutch¨ robot way, like Micheal Jackson). This is not organic! You don’t move on the streets like this. If you move like a machine, you take your body and tell it: “Now we are going to move like this!!”. This is what I’m talking about. If you bring it to your body as a memory, you put yourself in prison, you are not free. I don’t like this.

Jajaja, actually that’s what I’m doing all the time. Even at work at my desk I repeat these movements on a molecular level, because my body is so used to them now.

Kwenda Lima:  This is OK, but listen, the most difficult thing is to tell someone is what he’s doing is not organic. It’s very hard for us to accept that what we have learned is not organic. Of course, it depends on the teacher. I know teachers in France that teach Urban and I know that they teach very well!

Who are they?

Kwenda Lima:  For example, Carola from Madrid. And also Curtis from Paris. They are someone who know what they are doing and why they are doing that. Curtis knows.

So, he dances with awareness?

Kwenda Lima:  I don’t say that. In kizomba not every teacher dances with awareness. What I mean by awareness is “not dancing for yourself and not dancing to teach steps, but to transmit something that could contribute to the evolution of this society”. This is awareness. And not every teacher is dancing with this purpose. They teach for traveling on festivals, to create more steps, to fight Urban Kiz and Traditional Kizomba and to have girls, to have men, to be on top (to become famous), etc… This is not awareness. What I’m saying about awareness is that someone can use that tool to improve people and to take them somewhere in their lives.

Curtis is very aware of his steps, why he is doing these steps, he is aware of his technic, but about the world, the people, the society, etc.. not every teacher is aware.

All of these is for you to understand that I see things in Traditional Kizomba on which I don’t agree neither, and I see thing in Urban Kiz too, but I am not against them. I think all of them are needed. If people like Urban Kiz it’s because they need that energy. If they like Salsa it’s because they need that energy. What I’m trying to tell people is that those energies are different. The food that you eat is different. It will have an effect on your body. Either you become more sensual, or more rooted, or more boring, or independent… There is an effect.

How do you build up your workshop? Unfortunately I coudn’t see it.  Where do you put your accents? What is the most important thing you try to transmit to people?

Kwenda Lima:  It depends on a group. You can have, for example, classical music in my class, you can have mantra, you can have hip-hop or break dance in my class.

To dance kizomba?

Kwenda Lima:  Yes, to show people that they can dance kizomba to any type of music. It’s only in your mind. And for me this is the important message to make people not to accept things like this. That’s what makes you enjoy. Because if I accept kizomba like that it will make me fight. It will make me say “this is wrong. this is right¨. That’s the truth. It will make me separate from others.

I want people to accept the possibility that they can play with kizomba!

Wait! You don’t do it with salsa! You can’t play hip-hop and dance salsa to it! Ho can you do it with kizomba?

Kwenda Lima:  Are you sure you cannot do it?

Jajaja I don’t know!!!

Kwenda Lima:  Try to dance salsa to hip-hop. It works!

Really?

Kwenda Lima:  Of course! If you want I can put hip-hop and I dance salsa with you! It all depends on the way you embrace the music and the dance.  You meet them together.

(Unfortunately, I cannot publish the complete interview right now, as I´ve lost my voice recorder and cannot find it anywhere for days!! But I hope  it is interesting enough to be my New Year´s present for 2019!!  I WISH YOU ALL TO LIVE WITH AWARENESS! TO CHOOSE RIGHT TEACHERS, BECAUSE THEY ARE SOMETIME NOT ONLY DANCE TEACHERS, BUT LIFE TEACHERS TOO! BE AWAY OF WHAT YOU EAT, WHAT YOU DANCE , WHAT MUSIC YOU LISTEN, WHAT PEOPLE YOU SPEND YOUR TIME ON!!!)

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A hug. Now I know why I dance

“It’s been a long time…”. Yes. That’s what people told me tonight when they saw me entering the door.

Break

After all my motivating enthusiastic articles about how much I am in to kizomba, not needing any break, here I am! With the biggest break of my life. And not only the dance break. It was also somehow a life break. Not intentionally, not planned, not wanted, but I stopped dancing in summer, let’s just say for some real life circumstances.

Since the day I deleted all my dancing contacts and sent my FB account to the rubbish bin (sorry guys, I also had an article on that, how I was managing my social media. You won’t believe a word of what I’m saying in the end), I could feel it was the end. Of my kizomba story. I could feel even on a physical level like someone was cutting of my hand or my leg, with blood all around, and horrible pain, squeezing my teeth, trying not to stop breathing at all.

I thought I would never overcome that pain. It felt like my whole life was over.

Frankly speaking, the first few weeks tasted bitter, to say the least. But I had to move on…

And I did. Although kizomba stayed there deep in my heart. I was thinking about it, remembering everything I’d lived for the last 4 years. It looked crazy and unbelievable. Unforgettable memories of travelling the world, uncountable number of new people, and much more . You all know what I mean.

Change

But each time it was less and less… less kizomba in the car, in the shower, less contact with dancing friends, less or (I would rather say) zero festival plans. It was vanishing from my life. Each time I was getting better in terms of bearing my pain, getting used to my new life (the “normal” one I guess, like 99% of people on this planet). I was filling the empty gaps with other activities, thoughts and topics.

I overcome it.

I won.

I got rid of my drug.

I could do without it.

I never had believed I would be able to.

Nostalgia

Today I was feeling so down and tired, empty and totally out of energy, that I was about to shot myself if I wouldn’t come with a plan. And, accidentally I realized today it was Tuesday! That very day, when it all started 4 years ago. Moreover, today there was a small local party in that very place where it all started for me 4 years ago.

Suddenly I recharged myself like an iPhone, after a cup of espresso, updating my makeup and looking for my dancing shoes all around the house. I was going to dance!

It felt so strange to drive the way I did so many times in the past. I never drove the same itinerary ever again since then. Can’t even remember when I last went there. Ages. This bar is located in the part of the city where I never go for other things. Thus dancing is my only association with this area.

The place

I parked quickly, remembering my old tricks of getting good free spots. I walked in already in a nostalgic mood… Full house!! OMG! What are all those people doing so late on Tuesday evening!? Don’t they work tomorrow? (Applied to myself too)

I knew half of the crowd. To my surprise I was even lucky with the Dj. Booom… Stefanio Lima! What is he doing here on Tuesday night? Well, he is a… like all of them. I’m angry with him for our never-approved interview, but I still love him (appreciate him) for his music. TOP!

It took me a while to get used to the environment, standing a bit lost, feeling half “retired”/half “beginner”. I remembered my first steps in that very floor… and I got sentimentally sad, but happy at the same time.It was still there – this place – where I can always come. Come on the days like this: feeling down, frustrated, upset, bored, tired or stressed.

Hug

When I started dancing I clearly realized- I just needed a hug.

I wanted to be hugged so much, that it didn’t matter weather it was a man or a woman, young or old, black or white. I just wanted to feel that warmth, somebody’s arms around my waist and breath in my ear. You can feel how your body is recharging with this energy through the hug.

Now I know why I dance. I run away from my inner loneliness to hugs. They definitely won’t solve my problems, they won’t save me, but they help like honey at winter time.

Merry Christmas guys!

Here you can find different types of hugs: https://www.littlethings.com/hug-relationship-test

Big big HUG

Kizomba Dance and Woman´s Lead

For sure you saw many times on the dance floor girls leading men.. and this also applies to the Kizomba Dance. If you are a girl, you have probably danced at least once with another girl.

There are many more women in kizomba, it’s true. But is the ratio the only reason why we dance for men? 

I interviewed plenty of girls from different countries (some of them are professional dancers, artists and teachers), asking them what is the feeling dancing with a girl and what’s the difference with the man’s lead, if they would like to learn man’s steps and Why ?

What you are going to read maybe very interesting and even result surprising to discover what in fact motivates women to lead themselves or to follow woman’s lead.

 

Mila P: Not usual, strange. With a man you feel yourself more self-confident, you assume he knows the steps and you feel more relaxed. With a girl I’m all the time scared to step on her foot. It’s not the same.

Yes, I’d love to dance for a man to see how difficult it is, to compare. Maybe it would help me to improve my girls’ dancing.

 

Vanessa N.: To me personally there’s no difference when I dance for a man. If you have a good connection it’s a connection . It’s not exactly the same connection. You are more concentrated, you can’t let it go, but the feeling is the same as good. It’s simply fun.

When you lead as a man you have another approach. Even if you dance afterwards with a man you have less problems to follow.

I learned men steps because I wanted to experience a new thing in the kizomba dance, to go to another level. And because of the lack of guys in the kizomba world as well. And I did it when I started taxi dancing…

 

Sabrina: I only danced maybe 4 times with a woman. Mostly I feel they are too soft and weak and therefore I don’t like the feeling so much. Maybe also because their energy is still very female. Only one woman was really tall and strong, and it was actually better for that particular kizomba dance.

I could imagine learning it to generally improve my dancing skills and to be more independent, but so far I don’t enjoy the feeling of leading so much.

 

Trecy G: Well, doing like a man, when I dance I enjoy doing my own steps, to be free, to play with the music (musicality). Dancing with a girl on woman side is very fun because some ladies lead even better than men and sometimes have better musicality! There’s no difference for me to dance with a man or a woman.

I decided to learn men steps because I was curious to know how to lead and also because I started to teach. And for me it is important to know what my partner does so I could answer to the questions of our students. And also, it’s important while teaching when my partner is not there.

 

Mona C: The feeling when I dance kizomba with a girl is…. concentrated, relaxing and having fun 😄. The difference with a man is that I have to think twice what my next step will be. When I dance with a man and I have the connection.. it feels like I’m somewhere that nobody is watching.

Yes, I would like to learn man’s lead because sometimes I like to lead and play with the music my way… so the girl has to follow me 😅

 

Erna T:  For me it’s still a little bit strange feeling to dance with a girl because, of course, I dance more with men. It feels also good with a girl, but the connection with a man is better, I think.

Woman’s lead is softer for me. I also think that girls have better musicality than men. Another difference between both is that I know that the girls want just to dance, so it is only about dancing and sharing the same passion. With a man ( of course not all of them) you don’t know if they just want to dance or to prepare you for a private after-party dance 😂
Surely, the connection between men and women is completely different. I would say that I feel more secure with a man.

Yes I would like to learn the man’s steps to see how it is for them to lead and also to let the girls feel my musicality during the dance. But I think it is not easy to learn it 😂

 

Chiara G: The feeling with a girl is the same but, I can control movements and I can explain to my beginner students how to control and how to move the hip and back like a professional dancer, because they have to know what the girl has to feel when they’re doing the movement. Of course, I prefer to dance with a man, but if a man dances like a robot or like a stone, I prefer to dance with a girl because i can control what she is doing and take a good dance with.

Kizomba dance is not sexual and not a perverse joke, this is a normal dance like salsa or other dances, so you can of course dance with a man and with a woman. I don’t think I’ll stop dancing for a man if the situation requires. I mean if there are more women than men and a lot of girls are waiting for a dance. But this is another problem…  The big difference between the number of women and men is affecting the woman dancer’s role, so lately we have more and more women partners on the kizomba scene.

 

Hannah F: Dancing with a girl always depends on the girl you’re dancing with but basically the difference is that you have the freedom to interpret the music your own way, with your musicality. As a follower ( only followed with girls on a few occasions) the leading is usually softer, and we’re more about enjoying the moment and trying new stuff. No back breaking, which is heaven.

I would like to be a better leader because I love having the freedom to interpret music as I hear it!

 

Vanessa T.: I can’t describe this feeling exactly, because it depends with whom you are dancing. If you feel comfortable you have the same thing as with a man. If you have a good connection, it’s the most beautiful thing in the world.  For me it’s a comfortable feeling, because I like to dance with women. For it’s fine both to lead or to follow. But when I lead I have to think a bit more about what could I do, which will be my next step. It’s more difficult than just following. But, for example, at KZL I really enjoyed a dance with one girl. We danced for about 30-40 minutes and it was like flying… I closed my eyes and was really enjoying the dance! It didn’t matter what kind of music there was, didn’t matter at this point.

The difference is, when you lead, you must think about it. My most important issue is the musicality. I like to hear and get inspired by the music rather than just steps and tricks to show how good I am. That’s why sometimes I prefer to dance as a man so I could lead instead of following. That’s the most important difference dancing with a man or a woman.

Actually I din’t decide to learn man’s steps, I was more pushed into it, because the ratio between men and women is mostly bad and a lot of women stand on the side. So, at one point I just tried with a friend of mine to adapt what I normally do as a woman-follower, during a kizomba dance. That’s how it started. And I improved more and more… At the beginning it was really  difficult, as I tried to do every step in time.

As you know by yourself, I really enjoy sometimes dancing more with a woman than with a map, but when I go to a party and I’m only a leader, it’s not really joyful for me, it’s kind of not satisfying me at all. It’s fine for a while but not for the whole while.  I’d like also to follow.

 

Jogaile B: The feeling dancing with a girl is a bit unusual – already due to the fact that women have different body structure, softer skin, sweeter perfumes.. As strange it sounds they are often leading much harder than men do. Also the sensual part is missing. So, for me doing the kizomba dance with a woman is technical and more fun than the sensual ‘connecting souls’ experience.

I used to learn to lead, because i was teaching, so i had to know how to breakdown the steps and moves also for the men part. However i never wanted to take over the leader function on parties because i enjoy that I don’t have to think which step to do next and can just relax and follow.

 

Tania V:   I don’t see a big difference between dancing with a girl or with a guy, especially during a kizomba dance, I have danced with many girls with better rhythm, better musicality, better style and more strong and clear leading then any guy. As for feeling and sensuality, I can feel deep connection with a girl too, both musical and physical because many times it comes from dancing style. Being bisexual, I can feel desire, I can feel horny, I can feel the same bouquet of sensations that you normally feel with a good dancer. The only difference I feel is size! Girls normally are smaller than guys and me I like to feel weak close to a big and strong guy dancer.

I would like to learn to know how it is to lead, dance and feel the girls dancing style.

 

Katia KS: Sometimes I like to dance with a girl. There are some girls who lead very well with good musicality and creativity. I can have really fun dancing with a girl.

The difference… hm… good question.. maybe connection. I do not get that good connection like with a man. Time to time yes, depends who is this and how good she is. But that deep connection where you understand your partner only by eye contact is less possible with a girl then with a man.

I can definitely lead some basics during a kizomba dance as a teacher (I give private classes time to time on my own). But the Kizomba dance for me is still a partner dance. Means a man and woman. That is why I prefer to have it classic and to be a woman-follower.

 

Macarena P:   Well, I won’t lie to you, the first times it was strange, because we are used to dance with men and when we start dancing with girls, we feel them so small, that we think we gonna break them into pieces! 😂😂
Then, when you get used to it and you start enjoying it, it feels so good!

I think that girls who lead, do it because they miss something in the dancing with men, and they find it dancing with girls. In my opinion, I love leading because it lets me take control over the dance and use my musicality and my creativity much more than dancing with men.

In addition, I feel that most of the girls-leaders are actually pretty good, and girls who dance with female leaders, always have a positive feedback afterwards. I think that the reason is that we focus 100% on the girl we are leading, since we don’t care about how we look like dancing as a man, we try to make a girl have a good time, using our musicality and having a soft but clear leading 🙂

If I would like to learn man’s steps? Ummm yes and no 😂. Maybe I’ll take some kizomba dance classes, but just to open my mind and have more variety on my steps and feel more confident in my leading, but I’m not interested at all in looking as a man dancing 😀😘

 

SO, HERE ARE THE STORIES. LET ME KNOW WHAT YOU THINK IN THE COMMENTS!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lady Styling concept in kizomba by Inna Jadore

   Once upon a time in a beautiful city of Munich there was a girl called Inna. I met her for a little talk in the evening to tell me about her Lady Styling teaching. Inna has lived in Munich for almost half of her life, but originally, she is from Bulgaria. I will never forget the first time I saw her dancing. It was at Kizomba Luxembourg Festival 2nd Edition. It was one of the first festivals in my life, at the morning workshop with Donald Wilson. He didn’t have an official partner at that time, and he took Inna from the crowd of students for his Demo at the end of the workshop.

    I was watching her move and wondering how perfect her body was and how well she was following. She had been dancing Kizomba for a year by then, but clearly, she impressed me with her dancing skills.

   Later, I discovered that she started dancing when she was 6 and practiced different dance styles like ballet, modern dance, Bulgarian folk dances, hip hop, salsa (all styles), bachata and a bit of tango.

————————————

   The weather was hot, we stayed at one of the main Munich attractions area on a fancy terrace tasting local beers. I started from the middle:

  • Are you planning to continue with your Lady Styling or looking for a partner?

It’s both actually. I’m not only looking for a partner, but my main goal is to continue developing myself and teaching techniques, like body technics and musicality, which are essential for the kizomba dance and which I teach not only for ladies but for men as well. I have at my workshops men and women. The thing is that organizers prefer to call the class “Lady Style”, because it’s well known, and therefore well accepted title.

Lady Style is just one aspect of everything. I prefer to teach body technics, musicality, body isolation, which is relevant for men and women at the same time, and the techniques about the way a couple interacts with each other, how they communicate to each other. I think this is the key for dancing together and interpreting the music again together.

Of course, having a partner it would be an enrichment. At the same time, I would like to further develop myself as a leader as well… And I believe that not only men can teach a couple dance (kizomba, urban kiz or tarraxa etc). This is what we can do very well, the women, too.

  • What is “Lady Styling”? I personally don’t understand this concept, because I believe that every person has its own style, so when somebody tells me how to move my body, it’s kind of useless, might not be applicable to the way I am. So, how could Lady Styling influence on me? Why would I need it?

To me your question has to do with two different topics. For the definition of a dance style means – what kind of a dance style or genre we are talking about. About kizomba, salsa and urban kiz, So for me there is lady styling for the different dance styles. . When you go to a workshop you should check what kind of Lady Style it is. It could be everything.

It can be just an inspiration, giving you an idea how the style can look like and how you can develop yours based on the genre and certain dance elements, but there’s no certain lady style as a dance style. It should be just an inspiration or motivation to create your own style, showing your body, leading and following technics.

So, the lady style class is not only about moving your body on your own, but how to implement a movement while dancing with a partner. And there’s another very important thing, that your partner gives you some space for interpreting music with him together, but not using you only as a marionette.

  • But you can’t ask a man before the dance: “Will you give me some space for interpretation?”

You can give him an idea that you want to express yourself. Because it’s about adjustment of both parties to each other. A couple dance is when you get to know each other in the dance and you find the harmony between you both. Only then a couple dance can be fun and look beautiful. So, the question is: can a leader listen to the partner while leading? Because communication in the couple is sending and receiving or finding the balance.

  • I thought that kizomba is the type of dance where women cannot take initiative or improvise. To my understanding, I must be a plasticine, letting a man do with me whatever he wants. The only thing I do is follow.

I cannot completely agree with you. It’s clear that in kizomba you have less possibilities than in other types of dance to interpret on your own, it’s true. But in kizomba you also have your body movement GINGA while following which you can use without being led to implement it. So, you can add your own flair in that space. It’s not just a style but how ladies and men move across the styles.

  • A body WHAT??? (I was ashamed for not knowing what it was after almost 4 years in kizomba)

Ginga! You really don’t know what it is? Oh my God! It’s a key element of the kizomba dance! Normally it’s the lady styling movement in the kizomba, but men can also move like that. It’s the bunda movement.

In other styles, like urban kiz and tarraxa you have more possibilities to put your personal interpretation of the music, where possible, if your partner gives you this possibility. It´s not only about following. It´s about expressing you both in the couple dance.

  • Do you know why I actually called you?  I saw you in the rating of Top 5 most popular female kizomba dancers 2016 according to The Kizomba Channel, scored for their skills, interview/professionalism and popularity on The Kizomba Channel.

A personal statement about me: Popularity is not the most important thing for me. For me the most important thing is that I can share my knowledge with my students and I see, that they are more motivated, more excited about the dance, that they are enabled to enjoy the dance after my workshops. It´s not that about the quantity, but about the quality at workshops, that counts for me.

  • I bet that any teacher now in front of me would reply something similar, as they are all very nice statements that everybody uses. All festival organizers repeat ” We prefer quality to quantity”.  

How many people on average would attend your workshop? 

I don´t have regular workshops. I´m organizing the second lady styling boot camp in Munich now. And I start teaching in Munich after some years of dancing internationally and teaching abroad. Most of the time I teach at festivals. And at festivals it´s between 25 and 100 people per workshop. But I see, that the less people I have, the deeper and the better we go through the stuff.

  • How do you make the difference with other lady styling teachers?

I cannot talk for everyone, but I can talk for myself. I always have open level workshops. The most important thing is that everyone attending my workshops understands the basics of kizomba dance, knows its elements and can differentiate the music and the genres. So that at festivals they know what they are supposed to dance to a certain type of music. This is how I start my workshops.

I think everyone has a different perception, a vision of the dance, and it’s hard to find someone having the same vision. But it’s about sharing things and communicating them to people, and inspiring people. This is for me the most important thing.

  • How do people normally become an official teaching couple? You just have a good connection on the dance floor and say like “Oh, let’s teach together!?” 

There is no scheme for that, but I’m pretty sure that the connection that you have at a certain moment is not enough to be a teaching couple. There are so many more aspects, like having the pedagogical understanding and skills, having experience in communicating with students, inspiring them… Most importantly they must have the same vision for everything. Therefore, I think that the two need to get to know each other first.

  • In your opinion how a good teaching couple is supposed to be?

There are many aspects of being a good teaching couple and there are many essential things I mentioned already, but repeating myself, both should be able to communicate to each other properly and communicate to their students in a proper, effective way, transmitting not only their skills, but their vision and inspiration as one!

   Leaving this conversation in the same place where I started it, I’m finishing my post thanking Inna for finding time to show me a piece of Munich and sharing with me her thoughts on Lady Styling and couple dance.  I will continue watching her dance, but now, having the chance to get to know her better, I will look at her differently…

Kizomba connection vs Molecular World

THE CONNECTION

There is something I learned in all these years of dancing. Thanks to dancing. Something important about the kizomba connection. I also learned to hear myself, to be conscious of what I feel and how I feel.

THE ENERGY

  • People I accept

There are people whose energies my body does not accept. It never will. I stopped fighting myself to try to adjust to such people, to look for the way to get to them, to understand them. Now I just accept the fact that we are simply incompatible with me, like butter and water, and I feel better, because I realized that It’s not possible to have true good relationship with absolutely everybody, because I can’t go against my nature.

  • People I don’t accept

On the contrary, people I accept, I do it no matter what they say or do. We don’t need ages to get close. We already ARE close. I have also been observing how we are all connected to each other on the dance scene, who gets on well with whom, who makes friends with whom..   And I noticed some certain patterns: we get attracted by similar types of energy, as in a molecular world with positively and negatively charged ions. We get attracted or refused by smell.

THE SUPERPOWER

The kizomba dance increased in a hundredfold my sensitivity and perception of people at some subcutaneous level. It’s like superpower, as the sensory abilities that we develop through constant physical contact with a huge number of people, as if in a few seconds I can read information from the energy field of people, which allows me to realize whether their ions match with mine or not.

In the ordinary world, we also feel and understand this, but in kizomba it is much more noticeable, and perception is much sharper. And I’ll tell you why.

THE SMELL

During the dance we sweat. Each of us emits a certain natural smell of our body. With close physical contact, these smells at subconscious level give signals to the brain. This forms an unmistakable acceptance or rejection of one or another person. Pheromones that rule the ball will determine what we call a “kizomba connection”. In the ordinary world they do not attack us on the go. Some time passes before we allow physical contact, but on the dance floor we save ourselves this time. Therefore, in the first dance with a stranger, we sometimes get an offer to go to bed. This is not surprising.

THE PHEROMONES

  • Hormones

To understand what pheromones are, you can remember about hormones. Hormones are chemicals that seem to bind the whole organism into one whole, providing a quick exchange of information between its parts. Pheromones play the same role. Only their task is to connect individuals belonging to the same species of animals to couples or communities. The “chemical” communication of humans involve some special substances.

  • Control

Throughout the development of human communities, we do everything to suppress the instinctive reactions of people to smells, so that we could better control ourselves, control our animal instincts. In kizomba, it is very difficult to do so because of a close physical contact.

Although our sense of smell is weak when we compare it to the smell of many animals, the smell from our bodies is stronger than in animals. Many women find the smell of a man pleasant, if they are attracted to him, and unbearable if a man does not like them.

  • Information

In addition to the pheromone cocktail, body smell carries a lot of other information, which also enhances or weakens the response to pheromones. For example, if we give a mice a wide range of partners for mating, it prefers those whose genotype was the most different from their own. It is possible that similar unconscious selectivity exists in humans: the limb system processes the information carried by the smell, and decides whether to open the path to passions.

  • Signals

Pheromones are honest signals. You can hide the true feelings by changing your facial expression. You can hide the true thoughts, uttering insincere words, but it’s very difficult to change the smells that spread our body. Sebaceous glands, sweat glands, glands of the genital organs work continuously, sending information about the state of our desires to the environment. Pheromones, awakening various behavioral (instinctive) and physiological reactions, manage the complex process of rapprochement.

THE CONCLUSION

This is the “molecular world” what I mentioned above. The dance scene is an excellent example of an instinctive animal world. In creativity we are closer to nature. We are natural in understanding and expressing ourselves. But our kizomba connection is determined. And we can do nothing about it. Go dance!!! This is a great way of self-discovery!

SOURCES:

** Some information taken from https://www.nkj.ru/archive/articles/1243/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KIZZAFRO impressions 5th Edition by european DJs and artists

Saïdou Saï Saï Mangane:

Good atmosphere, friendly, well received, KIZZAFRO festival is different from a lot of others because of their theme and their Russian culture. Good team, good line up. It was awesome!

 

Jazzy Cubango:

Yeaaaa…wooop woop The festival was so Nice. As you know, I love Russia. And the KIZZAFRO Festival is one of my favorites, because the welcome is always warm, it feels like home and especially the energy that we get and that we give is huge. I loved the last day (Sunday) the Russian Party where the festival-goers, the organizers and the artists could share a fine moment of Russian culture and delirium before starting the evening and the release of the final ball before finishing the Festival.

 

Stefanio Lima:

I have a newcomer in my favorites list of festivals, KIZZAFRO in beautiful Moscow. As I could taste the good atmosphere in the night parties every day, the high quality dances and great music. A good caring organisation with a crew that is ready to solve any problem and make sure you have anything you need. A lovely audience that come to enjoy the music!! Definitely a festival holy should attend next year!! ❤

 

Gwany VVK:

KIZZAFRO is an amazing festival! Good organisation. Festival special Tarraxo, everybody loves tarraxo !!!  Don’t change anything !!! LOL

 

Kizzy:

I enjoyed KIZZAFRO festival. it was the first time for me and this festival exceeded all my expectations. it was very well organized … the whole team was kind to us and anticipated our needs (water, food available, interpreter for the courses). i was very touched by lenvi to learn from students … and my great pride was to be able to explain the history of our style, our partnership with Gwany. I loved the Russian part, because I had never been invited to discover the culture of the country in a festival …. it was great, so I left very excited KizzAfro festival … and of course I’d like to come back to share my teaching and live a wonderful time of sharing

 

Joe NiceLife:

I strongly recommend KIZZAFRO to any kizomba dance addict because this 5th edition is just a blast. The vibe, the organization were so high…For me it was my first edition and it was just a blast.. to say the least. Please remember wherever you come from, KizzAfro is unique and will remain unique…Highly recommended to anyone who loves kiz…

 

Lucien Noten:

KIZZAFRO. You should write this festival in capitals. My third KizzAfro. The best ever of all my festivals till now. Ambiance, music and lots of genuine people. The organizer did a lot to make this anniversary memorable. And it was. Amazing is not the right word. Magical perhaps. I need time to write a proper review. But these are my preliminary words.

 

Hicham Lokito Elbanbino Movemintos:

I really loved the way this festival was organised from day 1 till the end !! Every single person was having fun i couldn’t stop dancing !! I even compted my partners !!😅😅😂😂 100 girl I danced with in 4 days 🤣🤣
The team of kizz afro made everyone like a VIP artist or not !!
I really recommend this festival to everyone who wanna enjoy en a proper way .

 

Kevin Vidjai:

KIZZAFRO 2018 was amazing! For me it’s one of my favorite festivals because of the magical atmosphere, the warm and passionate people and the beautiful location, Cosmos hotel! I will definitely be back next year!

 

 

Jazzy Cubango – a DJ, a teacher and an events organizer

Jazzy Cubango is one of those people who doesn’t need to be presented. I offered him to talk without almost knowing him, and he politely agreed to find some time to answer questions for my blog followers. I’ve always admired his intriguing eyes, that have already conquered many dance-floors around the world. I would take him to the list of Top 10 seducers in kizomba. But what do we know about him, besides his outstanding appearance?

Jazzy is an organizer and co-organizer of three festivals: “Let Me Kizz You”, “Paris Kizomba Congress” and “Castle Limouzikiz”. He is a DJ and a kizomba teacher. I’ve danced with him a couple of times. I consider him a comfortable dancer. I went to some of his festivals some time. I’ve listened to some of his DJ-sets as well. I saw some of demos of his workshops and obviously I saw his face on every photo of Russian kizomba girls. But still I’m sure that neither me, nor you know much about this guy. So, shall we discover this charismatic and handsome man together?

THE INTERVIEW:

  • Let´s start by your name: why “Jazzy Cubango”? What does this nick name mean?

In my life I practiced several types of dances. I started when I was young with the Caribbean folk dances from where I was born. Then Hip Hop, Cuban salsa and the Dominican bachata and afterwards I came to Kizomba and Urban kiz.

My nickname “JAZZY” comes from my teenage years when I started dancing Hip Hop and I was also a saxophone player… My style was mixed with the Jazz Rock (based on footwork), and my friends called me “Jazzy”. Then naturally everybody started calling me like that till nowadays.

“Cubango” comes from Cuba and Angola, as the first dance school I created in 2012 was called “CubAngo Connexion”. Because these are the two dances that I taught the most and that marked a good part of my life.

  • Do you still play saxophone?

sax

Well, I haven’t played it for about 10 years and it´s always been in my parent’s apartment. But when they retired and moved to Martinique, they gave it back to me. And now it´s at my place.

  • When did you get to know kizomba? Who was/were your teacher(s)?

In 2009, at a festival of Kenzo Medi in France. It was a Salsa festival, but the first one where I got to know Kizomba. Then I travelled to Poland and Portugal to learn more about this dance. And I met for the first time Kwenda Lima, Afro Latin Connexion and many others. They were my first teachers and inspiration.

After that, in 2010 I created the first 100% Kizomba Festival in France with my then girlfriend Estelle – the Kizomba Swimming Festival. I brought Pitchu and Vanessa, Albir and Sara Lopez, Afrolatin Connection and other artists. For the first 3 years it was the only one pure kizomba festival in France. Afterwards everybody started doing it as well.

Four years later I launched “Paris Kizomba Congress” with Fred Maestro. We are partners with him till now.

  • You are a multi-task guy, playing several roles at the same time on the dancing scene. What brings you most personal satisfaction: dancing, teaching, mixing or organizing events?

Teaching is the thing that most makes me happy. But during all my life I’ve always been in music and organised things.

The common thing that I find in each of these activities is sharing happiness with people. When I organize events or teach dancing steps or play music, I share my happiness with others… It is the meaning of the bird “colibri” that I have tattooed on my neck.

jazzy tattoo

 

  • Do you have only 1 tattoo?

hybiscusNo, I have 2. The other one is on my back- it´s hibiscus flower. It represents Martinique (I´m from Martinique). They call Martinique – The Flower Island. And the main flower representing the island is Hibiscus. The tattoo is a mixture of Hibiscus with the musical note “sol”.

 

  • Do you have favorite destinations?

Yes, I have. I travel almost all over the world. But my favorite ones for dancing Kizomba are Russia, Croatia, Sweden and some others. Because I found their people have really good and positive energy.

I like Russia because the dancing level of girls is very good. Russian girls are very conscious about their femininity. They really live the dance! Others can be technically good, but they care more of the visual aspect. It´s more intense on the emotional level with Russian ladies.

  • Do you have a teaching partner now (for workshops)? Who is she?

I had one. Her name is Dana. We worked together for one year. She lives in Germany. It was a bit difficult to meet.  Now I have no partner.

  • Do you give regular classes in Paris on working days or only while travelling to festivals at weekends? Do you give private lessons as well? How much does one cost?

Three years ago, I stopped my regular classes in Paris, because I was travelling almost all the time. Now I focus myself on festivals abroad and on the organization of my events – “PKC” and a new concept “Let Me Kizz You”.

I give exclusively private classes and sometimes one-time workshops in France.

  • I always ask this question to “decision-makers” of Kizomba: if it was in your power to change something on the kizomba dance scene, what would it be?

If I had to change something? Hmmm… I would not change anything about kizomba or urban kiz. I find it perfect! That’s why it attracts so many people. The only thing that could be good is to change the attitude of some people, who are not passionate about the dance itself, but who are there just to take advantage of the scene. People with bad intentions, taking themselves for who they are not and judging others. But unfortunately, we cannot change the mindset of others.

  • I´m sure that many ladies constantly ask for your attention. How do you refuse some? Do you feel uncomfortable to say “no” to a dance? In what cases do you refuse a dance?

I feel very uncomfortable to say “no”. Even if it’s only for one dance I try to say “yes”. But the thing is, people cannot imagine how many times a teacher is asked for a dance. It’s impossible to dance with everyone. And now I’m also a DJ. Thus, I have even less time to dance at festivals. It’s more difficult.

Teaching and mixing takes twice as much energy and time… So usually I reply something like “not now” or “later”, if at that moment I’m busy or tired.

Anyway, I always keep one hour during the night to dance with everybody and some time for myself.

  • Where and how do you see yourself in 5 years?

Maybe I will still be organizing festivals in France or in other countries. Maybe I will be still working as a DJ. I really don’t know. I’ve been in kizomba for 8 years now. It changes a lot in a good way as well as in a bad way, but I stay always addicted. So, let’s see what happens next. I’ll be in the music that’s for sure.

  • What advice would you give people who have just came to this kiz-world, according to all your experience?

Dancing can be a passion for some people and entertainment for others. A fun can become a passion. If you come to the kiz-world, keep in mind that this is not true life … Do the separation between the positive and negative things, keep only the positive for yourself and live your kizomba as you feel.

  • What can you tell the world about David Giboyau?

Nothing special. It’s just my real name, in normal life. The name on my papers

  • Could we learn something about your real life, like what do you do apart from kizomba?

Ah, you already know my real name. I work in the French National Train Company, managing train stations in Paris. I’ve been doing it part-time now for 5 years, to free up more time for dancing and travelling.

I always do both: real life activities and the music.

  • Many people, who are so much into the dancing scene, just leave their normal everyday jobs and dedicate themselves completely to music. Why do you still keep your job?

I could leave it, but I always think about the future, about what could happen. You never know if one day I had an accident, then at least I would always have a normal job. Besides, I have a lot of benefits here. I have free transport in France and all neighbouring countries, like Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Spain, etc., anywhere where I can depart from Paris by train. It’s very comfortable in terms of money savings)

  • I´m sure half of female kizomba population would like to know at least if Jazzy Cubango has a girlfriend. Do you?))

——————————————————————————————–

Jazzy Cubango Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/cubango.jazzy/

https://www.facebook.com/jazzycubango.new

https://www.facebook.com/JazzyCubango.kizomba/

Dance friends: my kizomba co-pilot

Normally we come to kizomba world alone. But as the time passes by, we make acquaintances and dance friends and in the end we meet that one person who becomes our best kizz-friend. The one who shares all our nights out, trips, meals and secrets. We generally don’t trust anyone in kizomba, but we still open up to a minimum and stick to those ones, our Kizomba “bros”, “pots”, whatever you call them.

With my bestie it was a quick match. And this post is dedicated to her, because she is worth it.

We met at some kizomba party in Amsterdam over a couple of years ago. We had a brief conversation, and next week I was at her place picking her up for some kiz-event. I was upset and told her in 5 minutes all my life, full of tears and snot. We hugged, we had a drink and since then we were already dance friends. Today it’s her Birthday. And I publish this post to thank her for being always there for me. I thank her for supporting me in my downs, for never betraying my trust and for trusting me back. You will ask me: what does it have to do with the kizomba?

A lot. Imagine if you had no one to gossip about those bitches or those star-guys, if you had no one to open a bottle of (xxx) with and talk in bed long after a party is over? And to share petrol and accommodation costs?? (LOL). In fact, I’m used to my dance friend so much, and I’m happy she’s my companion for all my kizomba journeys, that recently I almost never accept co-sharing with anyone else. To me she’s my back in this kizomba turbulence. I’m lucky I got to know her one day.

Sometimes when I’m about to send it all to hell, she keeps me afloat. I feel safe and I keep on going  (meaning “keep on dancing“)… It’s important to have a good friend. But it’s even more important and, I would say, priceless to have one in Kizomba! Our friends from  the real world can hardly understand our passion for kizomba dance. This is a particular scene. Overflowing with emotions, we may speak different languages with people from outside it. They maybe obviously best friends ever, but they are not able to feel what makes our hearts beat so crazily.

I feel like I must present her to you anyway, as, most importantly, she is the one who gives me a hand with almost all my blog contents, the one to help me to edit most of my articles (not this one lol) checking my English and the one to advise if I should ever publish some of my crazy stuff at all.

Take care about your dance friends! And the real ones as well!! In my case she IS my real friend, not only on the dance-floor.

Mila

Now you know who my co-pilot is)

DANCE FOR IT – a movie about three kizomba dancing couples

  I would like to support the amazing project DANCE FOR IT, which is a movie about our favorite kizomba dancers´ lives, by publishing below my interview with its founder, Anna. I loved the trailer and contacted her to tell me in details what it is about and asking her how I could help to make it happen.

 

What is this project about?

“Dance for it” is a human story about 6 dancers – Albir and Carola, Ricardo and Paula, Paulo and Lanna. Each of them dances for different reason and has a very inspiring personal story. It’s about real life, love, sharing heritage with the world, fighting for dreams, making difficult choices, taking the challenge of being real. These are human stories that will resonate with all of us.

There will be two very special episodes. We want to follow Paulo and Lanna to their homeland, Angola, and meet their families. We will see them all together dancing, singing, laughing – it’s absolutely precious. I believe that to see it is important not only to understand better the personalities of Paulo and Lanna, but also to feel deeper Kizomba dance and its roots.

The other storyline is following Albir to Panama. He left for Madrid to study dancing when he was young. His family is in Panama and they are his heart. Everything we need to understand about Albir is there.

I believe that telling human stories is one of the best jobs in the world and I want to make a documentary which will inspire, empower, bring joy and hope.

What does DANCE FOR IT stand for?

In English language there is an expression “Go for it” which I understand as “be brave and pursue you dreams”. For the characters of my film dancing is the way to pursue their dreams, so I changed “go” to “dance”. For me it’s the perfect name.

How the idea was born?

In 2014 I started dancing Kizomba and went to my first Kizomba festival – it was DMAES in Porto, organized by Afrolatin Connection. That summer before this trip I graduated from the university (I studied documentary filmmaking) and quit my job which I didn’t love anymore. I felt pretty lost and didn’t really know what to do with my life. I was hoping that vacation in beautiful Portugal will help me find a new passion – and it happened. The idea for this film was the gift from the universe))

At the main party artists were performing and I saw for the first time how these 3 couples were dancing. I was fascinated how beautiful and inspiring they were. I still remember how Paulo and Lanna shared such a huge happiness during their show; Ricardo and Paula were looking at each other with so much love; and Albir and Carola hugged each other after the show and it felt like all the kindness of the world was in that hug. It’s a bit difficult to explain – that’s what I felt that night and feel till nowadays. They inspire me, they make me feel better – and I’m sure not only me. I want to share these beautiful feelings with everybody in my film “DANCE FOR IT”.

Why did you choose particularly these dancers?

I really didn’t choose anybody. It was love at the first sight – you never can explain why you fall in love with a particular person, you just feel it.

 

When does the Crowdfunding start?

It starts on May 22 (TODAY!) and will be live till the beginning of July. Although I’m asking everyone who wants to support this project to do it these days – the first 5 days of the campaign are crucially important! During this time you receive support from your family and friends (and I consider Kizomba community as a big dancing family) and later, when the DANCE FOR IT campaign gets viral and gets first success, people from the outside join and that’s how I can reach my funding goal.

 

How can we collaborate to it?

There are two best options: to donate and to share the campaign in your social media. If you have an idea of how we can cooperate in other ways, please contact me and I’ll be happy to discuss it.

LINK TO THE PROJECT:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/dance-for-it-documentary/x/12446539#/

 

Link to the trailerAlbir

https://youtu.be/-RVnd8TQVPc

 

Is it time to take a break from kizomba?

Yesterday I got a question in my PM from one of my followers: “I´m very unhappy about some certain things in Kizomba going on, with all the money spent on it and all the tiredness. It was worth it in the beginning, but now I feel just so sad because of people´s behaviors. Going to festivals should make me happy, not make me sad like this. What do you suggest me to do? Should I take a break from kizomba?”

My first reaction was a smile on my face, as I have found myself in the same situation for the last several months as well. I was all the time telling everyone “I´m going to take a break from kizomba”, but still booking my next trip. Like fighting myself to stop it, but not having enough willpower to make it happen.  I rationally realize that any kind of addition must be controlled. I tried to dozen it, telling my family and friends that from now on I will attend only 1 festival every 3 months (obviously not considering local 1-night parties). But till now I have never kept my promise.

After reading yesterday´s email I was thinking what to reply to this person… and to myself.  I finally answered a few nice words, like “go with the flow” (which not that bad answer neither), but the question stuck in my head and unconsciously I was still looking for better explanations.

Today at work I’ve been listening to kizomba music with my headphones all day long… I suddenly realized that I was doing the same thing as over three years ago, when I just made my first steps – listening to kizomba all the time and everywhere.  I never got tired of this music. People were wondering how it is possible to listen to it 24-hours 7 days a week. My car, my bathroom, my iPhone & Soundcloud playlists, my get-together with friends… all around the way.

I still love it today. I’m not ready to quit. I can’t force myself. Maybe one day it will come… my burn out. But it will happen naturally. Not now. Not today. Let’s be honest to ourselves. Let’s listen to ourselves and follow our hearts, not our heads.

Everything finishes one day. I realize that this is just a period in my life. A beautiful period. I know it will end. That’s why now I enjoy it at maximum, I breathe deeply and relish it.  I’m trying to look for positive thing in it. What most helps me to continue in this dancing world is actually DANCING! It’s closing my eyes, trying to feel unknown energies, accept them, catching the same wave.

The more people I know, the more the kizomba scene becomes all about socializing, the more time I spend on conversations, drinking at pre-parties (which imperceptibly pass into parties, as they finish at 2-3 in the morning) rather that on the dance-floor. Yes, I enjoy hanging out with my “veterans”, gossiping, laughing and playing fool. But, I still miss the dance-floor a lot. And at 11:30 pm I start asking my friends: “Are we finally going out of this hotel room or what?  I want to dance!!!”  And they all reply: “Calm down! There’s nothing to do on the dance-floor yet. Relax and enjoy the moment”.

And I stay. But my thoughts fly away to that big dark room, full of slowly moving people. I get nervous and think to myself: “Next time I go to a festival alone, and, like a beginner, I´ll come to parties as early as possible in order not to miss any minute of it! Even if I must dance with beginners, I don´t care. At least I will listen to this magical music and savor the atmosphere”. In the end, that’s why I keep on going. And while I never have enough of dancing, I’ll be there. So, my dear followers, after all mentioned above, for sure I say, it’s not my time to take a break from kizomba, “See you on the dance floor!” =)

 

 

 

Born dancer – BODY KIZ LANGUAGE

   Let me introduce you to a born dancer, a man who´s been on the stage for over 12 years, who had made his long dancing way to kizomba through different styles and experiences. Harvey BKL (David by his real name)!  Music is in his blood. It´s his devotion and philosophy.

  I met him last year on the dance floor. I asked myself why becoming a teacher in Paris with such an incredible rivalry. Would he ever find enough students to open a course? What is so special about him that people come to learn from him?

  • What is your story?

I have been practicing the art of dance since 2006. I started with Hip-Hop were I met the international teacher Ledoux Danza, who was teaching hip hop yet, but who was not dancing kizomba back in the days. Then I was involved in my first project: Illusion Optique show.
We were a troupe of street performers. We brought a lot in the streets environment in Paris and Europe with new entertainments technics. After that I decided to learn academic dances like ballet, jazz and modern (Alvin Hailey jazz and Graham method). I passed the admission to the Académie Internationale de la Dance in Paris. I took class there every day from 8.30 am to 5 pm for 3 years, that helped me a lot to develop my dancing skills.

With Illusion Optique we decided to travel to conquer the streets if foreign countries (USA, Italy, Germany, Spain, England, Sweden, Belgium), where we had a great success. We created a company specialized in entertainment and we presented shows everywhere we went.

One day I decided to stop our project, because we didn´t share the same point of view and we couldn’t agree on which direction to take…. We were losing our artistic authenticity, that had been our strength, for the sake of money. I was teaching a lot as well at that moment.

  • When and why did you get into Urban Kiz?

I got into urban in 2015 because I found the same freedom that I had had in hip hop. The freedom of creation. Soon I wanted to improve in kizomba dance.

  • Who were your teachers?

I took classes with Enah and Curtis. I also met Anais Millon by talking her class first, and afterwards I took part in her company project. I was her show-partner for 8 months. I learned a lot from her as she trained me a lot. And i had the opportunity to assist her during at workshops during this period (Work hard play hard). Our collaboration finished in January 2017. Then I created my own concept “Body Kiz Language”.

  • What is it about?

Basically, I really believe that dancing is a way of communicating. Through body movements (no matter which style) we can tell a lot and we can create emotions, sensuality, seduction. I dedicated a lot of time to it in in my dancing. I’am a hardworker because i’m convinced that no matter the talent you have it will not replace the job you do to improve. Everything I have I built myself and I’m proud of it! I’m not the best, but I can make people improve and give them advice how to dance better due to my dancing experience.

Ultimately this concept is about mixing styles… I express myself in the dance with different influences i got form my artistic background and I want to explore it in a new way in urban kiz, pushing a little bit more the boundaries to see what happens. For me the dance is always evolving… we are all part of it. I understand that people might think differently than me, but I think that it’s the choice you make to be a part of this evolution…

I’m new to teaching in kizomba and I’m happy that at the end of all my workshops my students have smiles on their faces and overall motivation to improve!

  • And now I see you teaching and performing with a new nice lady. Can you tell me a bit about your partnership and professional plans for the nearest future?

28378082_1592360110871469_8767355662596462181_nYes, its Nina Ysnel! We started working together in December 2017 to perform for an event against orphan diseases. It was a very nice experience. She is a very talented and complete artist doing painting and creating clothes and objects. We started working together in December 2017 and she’s also my girlfriend. Its always touchy to mix those two environments…. but its possible and for the moment we are doing very well! She has ballet dancing background and was one of the first to bring some fusion in the lady styling with moved like “ronds de jambes” and “fendus” picked from ballet dancing vocabulary. She’s also very experienced in the kizomba scene due to her previous partnerships…

So, we are working on mixing her universe with mine and our differents projects are on they way. Its coming soon 😉

  • I know you love kizomba. But is there anything you would change in the kizomba world if you could?

There are few talented and inspiring dancers i’ve seen that don’t get the visibility that they deserve…. I just think its sad.

Business is business, yes. but just let’s not forget that art is art too.

For the rest, people enjoy this world the way they want to, I’am noone to judge… 😉

 

  • If you had to move to teach in a different place, what country would you chose? Where do you like to dance most?? Do you have favourite destinations?

 

I would be happy to teach everywhere… the priceless value of this passion is to meet amazing people and share with them something priceless! I Like to dance foreign because the mentality is different than here and I find people more open and more friendly and respectful. This might upset some people but its my opinion.

No favorite destination!

 

  • What is your dancing dream?

My dream is to constantly improve and share this passion by dancing and teaching to many people as possible with my partner. I would like also to learn new dances and explore Always and always.

  • Where can people find you in Paris?

We are on some projects for the moments, so we are available only at weekends for teaching. Nevertheless,e will soon launch a weekly classes in Maison Alfort. We will communicate accordingly.

For the parties and festivals where we will be teaching people  can learn from our Facebook page .

 

 

FB page link “Harvey & Nina”:  https://www.facebook.com/harveyninakizomba/

FB page link “Body Kiz Language”:  https://www.facebook.com/BodyKizLanguage/

 

 

Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival

When I first time attended Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival it was its 2nd Edition in 2015. From the 4th one I started working at it as a volunteer. The 5th Edition is the 4th one I took part in and the 2nd one I was working at. And of all festivals obviously it’s my … it’s just mine. Other festivals can be good, and very good, and even great. But this one is in my heart forever. The one I stay faithful to. The only one I ever promoted, although nobody ever asked me to. And the one I am delighted to write about finally in my blog!

FACTS AND FIGURES

Kizomba Luxembourg Festival is a public event, approximate size nowadays reaches about 2.000-2-500 people.

The chronographs year by year:

1st Edition – 500 ppl

2nd Edition – 800 ppl

3rd Edition – 1500 ppl

4th Edition – 2300 ppl

In terms of size, KZL is one of two TOP biggest festivals of 100% kizomba in the world all along with “Feeling” (Madrid).

Initial idea – Aimé Beurt (https://www.facebook.com/aime.beurt) in March 2012.

 

OFFICIAL ORGANIZERS OF

KIZOMBA LUXEMBOURG FESTIVAL

IN FACES:

IMG_0538

THE INTERVIEW

PS: The organizers were interviewed separately, even on different days and months. They didn´t know the questions in advance and didn´t hear the answers of each other. There was no influence on the way they think nor the way they interact.

The beginning…

Dj X-TRA  At the beginning it was difficult to get credit, to make people pay attention to our event. We have an excellent team spirit! We did great promotion campaign, each member of the team traveling every weekend all around the world.

Dj PINGUSSO    About 1,5 years before the 1st Edition Aimé was giving workshops in CHE club, I was a DJ there. One day Aimé came to me and said: “I have an idea… let’s do a KZL festival”. I was a local DJ for that party, but I wasn’t too much into kizomba dance  yet. He spoke also with X-tra. He got his OK, and Melissa´s one as well. Then all together we went to one festival to see how it is. We enjoyed the vibe very much!

The first team was: me, Aimé, Rodney, X-tra, Melissa. Rachel was also with us.  We built everything for the 1st edition, we started to promote. We went to a lot of festivals, always wearing our Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival t-shirts, and roll-ups. The 1st edition took place the same date as “Africa Dancar”. Many people were saying that we wouldn’t be able to compete with them, but our festival was full. We had almost 800 people. We had a good vibe. Many people didn’t even know if Luxembourg was a country or not))) It was amazing.

RODNEY    Before Aimé came up to me with the idea, we had already been at two festivals, one in Portugal and one in Rovinj, Croatia. After Rovinj we were sure we must do it together. Aimé was my friend. So, for me it was just to help a friend of mine. I completely trusted him. So, I reacted very positively, and he could take the most of my social skills to gather people. I didn´t know how to do it exactly, because I wasn´t into kizomba yet. I couldn´t even dance it at that time. So, I started organizing a kizomba festival before I learned to dance kizomba itself.

 

The way you work?

Dj X-TRA The line-up hasn´t changed much over these years. We pick the best of the best, being always updated on the latest know-how of the Kizz-world. we are born perfectionists! We take our time to study the market, gathering information from other festivals.

AIMÉ   The most important is that every person in our team has his special “skill”, helping and giving ideas. We are a real team! We don´t have one boss. When an idea is important we convince each member of the team with arguments. That´s the way we work.

RODNEY   It takes approx..1 year to prepare everything. The 1st thing we usually focus on is to start checking a new line up -DJs and artists as well. And then we start to think about the people who´s gonna come to keep good gender balance between men and women. Afterwards we check main locations for the festivals. We did it for the 1st edition, and since then it´s normally the same place – the LuxExpo Box, so now it´s just about negotiating the price. We aim to get the lowest possible prices, so we could make it cheaper to everyone who comes to the festival. It´s a very important point we pay attention to. Then we clear up the rest of details, like car parting, promo tours, etc.. We decide where we are going to make the official pre-party, where the workshops would take place, and so on.

 

Who does what?

Dj X-TRA My role in the organization is being responsible for all sound systems, managing sponsors, and the administration part, like replying to mails, managing people’s information, etc

Dj PINGUSSO    Sometimes we share tasks, we exchange tasks.

AIMÉ   Each one has its tasks, but if someone needs help then we can help or substitute each other.

RODNEY  My responsibility is the artists management: to put them in the line-up and to take care of them during the festival. Including contracts with artists & DJs.

 

What’s your favorite part of the organizational process?

Dj  X-TRA   Our meetings before the festival. We always laugh a lot, even more than we talk. We are always in good mood! We have a lot of fun=) It takes time from other life activities to meet often and to put our ideas in practice. But I like it.

Dj PINGUSSO  My favourite moment is the end of the festival, when everyone is happy and making comments, and after months of work, I feel like it was worth it!

AIMÉ   My job during the festival is the coordination. At the same time this is the part that I like most. And of course, sometimes I must replace someone, or do something I don’t expect to do. It’s not always easy. For example, last year I had to clean the toilets during the festival, but it´s something I like to do! I am also the contact person with our providers, like the hotel, the LuxExpo, the transport company. I make deals with them, sign contracts, etc..

RODNEY  I enjoy myself when I see people happy. I talk to artists, DJs, dancers, everybody. I am only satisfied when everybody is. Sometimes I go up to the stage and observe…

 

How do you deal with lessons learned?

Dj  X-TRA   there are 3 types of mistakes:

  1. When you detect it, you can check it, analyse and change it at once. (We are strong at it)
  2. We can’t change it now but won´t repeat it next year.
  3. The one that puts you down forever (thanks God, hasn’t happened yet)

Dj PINGUSSO    1st thing is to keep what is good, and the 2nd is to work on weak points. Like the big difference between men and women, the major problem of the kizomba scene nowadays.  Like for the 5th edition we will have only ONE UNIQUE PASS, because the control is more precise, so we´ll have a better vision on the balance. But we still separate between men and women.

AIMÉ   Each year we try not to make the same mistakes as last year, that´s our goal. Last year there was a problem with shuttles. We fixed it. Also, there was a problem with the gender balance, so we are trying to fix it in 2018. That´s the way we work.

 

What´s the key of KZL success?

Dj  X-TRA   We love what we do! Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival is our baby. We are a family, also in private life. A great part of our success are people from Luxembourg themselves, everybody who comes to support us, all the kizomba Luxembourg community. They appreciate the festival, they spread good feedback about KZL everywhere they go, they are very proactive, and they help us to promote our festival. They working as volunteers at the event, and they are proud of us like real patriots!

RODNEY   First, we always stick to quality. Recently kizomba dance became very popular, spreading very quickly around the world. It’s easy to make money on it. Even if you just put music on a laptop and rent whatever room with a shitty dancefloor, you know that people will come anyway, because they want to dance. But at KZL we work in good faith.

Second, we are a family. Kizomba Luxembourg is not only Rodney, Aimé, Pingusso and X-tra, it´s the country, Luxembourg country! For us everybody who lives in Luxembourg is a part of the organization. Everyone who helps us is the organizer! Not volunteer, but the organizer. We take care of them, and we want to let know people around the world that Luxembourg is like this!  We work with our hearts. We organize the event to create a good atmosphere and let people enjoy it. Sometimes other organizers say the same things in public, but they don´t mean it indeed. But we are proud for our authenticity. If everyone would really mean what the say it would be amazing. But we are doing it in the right way, and we must continue like this, although it´s not easy.

Dj PINGUSSO   We do this for the people, we work a lot on details, we have a really good team behind us, everyone who works with us.

AIMÉ   One of the reasons why our festival is so successful it´s because we are not thinking about the money. We don’t try to save on the preparation to our event. We focus on the audience, trying to think like those who come to our festival, to put us on their place. We ask ourselves “if we were them what would we like and how would we like it to be?”  So, the right focus on people’s satisfaction is the key, not our profit.

 

Anyway, do you make good profit on it?

RODNEY   If I made good money on it, I wouldn’t continue any more. I would take the money and go away jajaja. Seriously, in Luxembourg it’s difficult. Although we grew a lot in 5 years, almost 5 times in number of people, but the prices for everything here grow with us too every year. You can’t imagine! So, it’s like a machine, we can’t stop it any more, but obviously because we love it, not for economical reasons.

 

Plans for further growth?

Dj  X-TRA  Physically it’s difficult to make it bigger in Luxembourg. This is a VERY small country, there are not many big comfortable locations to choose from. So, now I think we remain the way it is.

Dj PINGUSSO   Nooo, I guess we are good.

AIMÉ  To be honest, I don´t know if it’s a good idea to grow more than we are now. If the festival was techno, for example, or dance festival on TV in USA, Luxembourg could be like that. But in kizomba we have a problem that we could lose our atmosphere. I don’t know if we want to grow. That is really a big question. And I don´t have an answer to that.

RODNEY  The thing is that last year we had too many women, we apologize for that. So, this year our main purpose was to keep the right balance (and they managed!!!) to make people happy. The disadvantage is that in Luxembourg everything is very expensive. The festival costs a lot. We pray God and we try our best not to lose money. We cross fingers for that. As an example, last year we didn´t make any profit, even though we had a lot of people. Growing to make more money makes no sense because it doesn´t depend on the quantity of people.

If you compare the line-up between the first edition and now you will see that the balance was better before the division into Urban Kiz and Kizomba. We heard complaints in the past that KZL was only an Urban festival, and we added more traditional kizomba teachers in the line-up to make all dancers happy. Our aim was to become one, to show that we are also a Kizomba festival, not only Urban Kiz. Finally, we could make it. Now, those who like traditional kizomba also come to Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival.  That´s the idea for growth: not in number, but in the kinds of public. Moreover, this year we have an RnB room to bring people who like RnB as well.

 

Team rules?

Dj  X-TRA   If one says “no”, it´s NO. Obviously if it´s well justified. There must be a good reason for that. One more rule: we must love each other :))) We can ague sometimes, but we are always able to solve our problems. Because we talk straight and then turn the page.

 

Team meetings

Dj PINGUSSO   they are most of the time productive. Sometimes when you have 4 people to decide 1 think it can be a mess. The frequency depends on the season. At the beginning more, during promo phase less, 1-2 months before the festival we meet every week to prepare the last details.

Rodney, you are the only one who lives in Paris. Is it difficult to be in touch with and available at once for the rest of the team? Are you able to assist all the meetings?

RODNEY    Yes, of course! I live in Paris, but I move all the time. I´m in several different places at the same time, like Luxembourg and Germany, due to my job. That´s also why I am one of the organizers- So I basically can come to Luxembourg every weekend. I´ve never lived there, but I spend there a lot of time.

 

You know that many people don’t know who are the KZL organizers?

AIMÉ   Yes, I know, and it´s good. I don’t like to be in front of people, to show off, it´s my personality. I like to be at the backstage. I hate presentations. I do it only if nobody wants to do it in my team. I am a shy person.

RODNEY  I don’t like to be in public neither and to have my face on posts and promotion videos. I would prefer to stay in shadow. Until recently almost nobody knew I was also an organizer of Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival. But now I am starting to be identified and respectively I’m being more and more invited to parties and festivals.

 

How is KZL if you can give it only a few words? 

Dj X-TRA   getting better, creativity, family

RODNEY   family, enjoyment, friendship and happiness

——————————————————————————————————————————–

ATTENTION

TWO THINGS THAT MADE THIS EDITION DIFFERENT FROM OTHERS AND ALSO FROM OTHER KIZOMBA FESTIVALS!!!

FOR THE FIRST TIME Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival PRESENTED:

The Unique Pass

X-TRA    Each time they are more and more dancers with experience, so they just come to enjoy, to dance not to learn. We have one of the best social rooms in Europe (Blog: agree!!). The UNIQUE pass is also to reduce the price so that people who like to dance don’t feel that they pay too much for the festival.

NO taxi-dancers

Dj PINGUSSO   Why?  – because there are a lot of contradiction, after a long discussion we decided not to have them. On the 1st edition we didn’t have taxi dancers, and I don’t remember that problem with the balance. For me it’s not an issue, we are going to work on it, so it will not be an issue. (Blog:  and it wasn´t at all! It was great and a big success!!)

AIMÉ   Maybe this year there is a bit less people at Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival due to the changes mentioned above, but I don’t mind having less people as long as they enjoy the festival and really like it! I prefer it like this rather than people come and complain. We don’t work for money, it’s not interesting.

 

ATTENTIONWhat is the idea behind this decision?

As you all know, the 5th Edition was very special. For the first time the organizers haven´t contracted any taxi-dancers. And they have their reasons for that. In addition to the comments above, about a month ago on the official KZL page in Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/events/157426514923880/ ) you could also see a video where they explained in 3 languages the “why” (https://www.facebook.com/kizombaluxembourg/ posted 01.03.2018 ).

But behind that decision there is a very interesting idea, that has been processed in the last weeks!

It’s simple. It is no news that recently every man wants to be a taxi-dancer, although sometimes they don’t even know how to dance properly, as they’ve been dancing just for 3 to 4 months. Looking for free trips, free accommodation and food they decide to join a taxi-team, but to be honest they are not experienced enough.

So, how to choose a good taxi dancer from this huge crowd?

The organizers of Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival decided to set up a Taxi Dancer Association, which includes an agreement between two parties – the organizers of different festivals and taxi-teams, together creating special rules to be a part of an official List of Taxi-Dancers.

The list would be published for use of both parties. The first steps include talking to as many organizers as possible to see what they think about this idea. After that to speak to teams if they are OK to do it, and then together write an official list of rules. Those who are IN have to accept these rules. Those who are not interested can do whatever they want.

Some of the organizers, like Narcisse *Universal Kiz*. Yannik *Futurokiz*, etc., have been already approached, as well as some of the taxi-teams. They liked the idea!

I wonder if the decision not to take taxi dancers this year is just temporal until the Association of taxis will be founded. Let´s see what happens next year!!

Luxembourg proves to be the pioneer and the revolutionary in the kizomba world.  They make changes!

Now it´s time to rest and recover after a long 5-days-and-nights Luxembourg International Kizomba Festival event, which is already inviting you to its 6th Edition in 2019! Check it at https://www.facebook.com/events/2143288782378729/  and book your pass in advance to make sure you don´t miss it!

 

Official KZL T-shirts all over 5 years:

IMG_0532IMG_0531

 

Mike Evens & Skizomba in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc

The concept

Just back from a very special trip to Chamonix- Mont-Blanc – a resort area near the junction of France, Switzerland and Italy – organized by Mike Evens. It’s difficult to call it a “festival” or any other. I would say it´s a mixture of sports, kizomba, playing games, socializing and having fun – SKIZOMBA!!!

A very particular concept of Ski practice + Kizomba dance had its first edition 7 years ago. I have never heard of it before. But looking for unusual experiences I paid attention to it and decided to make it one of my priority trips 2018. When I got everything solved and confirmed I felt those butterflys in my stomach!

Mike Evens

Knowing Mike Evens as one of the key players on the kizomba scene, as the organizer of one of the most popular kizomba festivals – I’M YOUR DJ – and having already visited some of his festivals, I knew it could not turn bad, to say the least.

Mike Evens team is one of the best team-organizers in the dancing world. That must have been win-win trip anyway. Although I haven’t skied for almost 10 years, that didn’t stop me from going there. 

The road trip took a bit over 6 hours. No snowfalls or stories. It was very easy to find the place. Everyone could communicate through a TEAM group in What’sApp with their suggestions, looking for each other, making plans or any other aspects related to the organization of the event. It was comfortable, quick and very useful. I got updated at once on every change, so I could react accordingly.

The atmosphere

In a familiar atmosphere, I got lost in the time. I lived a small life among the Alps in a little place that was my house for a while. Too many days for too few people (about 60) made us feel a real community, and I would rather say one family members.  It is the smallest “festival” I have ever gone in my life!

That was a real relax time, laughing, making new friends, enjoying the wonderful nature panorame of Mont Blanc and bathing in the snow… At first, I wanted to interview Mike Evens for my blog, but the more time passed by, watching him in action, the more I realized I had nothing to ask him. I saw everything I needed written on his face: whatever he does in kizomba as an organizer or a teacher, he really enjoys doing it. He loves dancing!!! Therefore, first of all, to me Mike Evens is a dancer. Full of energy he is always there being present in complete access for the guests. But it’s not just him, it’s all his friends and team being the same way crazily energizing the public. If you once go to his event, you will follow him forever.

Pure emotion

Please, note, I’m not writing these compliments to Mike Evens as a promotion for his new edition of Skizomba or any other of his kizomba festivals. This opinion is my pure emotion and impression on what I experienced in the last days. I’d say more: he injured his shoulder on the ski slope, and the same night afterwards I saw him taxi-dancing nonstop with the bandaged hand!! I saw him jumping, starting the audience and singing and I was astonished! No words but thanking Mike Evens, Kal and Estelle for the great job!

If you ever decide to go to Skizomba, keep in your mind, this is not a simply dancing festival; this is your Holidays time to disconnect from the rest of the world. I would also advice you to visit the small village of Chaminix, to have a meal there outside watching the mountains at the background…

Now I’m back home, but still in my mind in that small village in the mountains having hot wine and chilling with people that share the same passion with me.

 

Taxi dancers team story: The “Kiztrotters”

Well it was already time for me to tell you about some taxi dancers team. There are plenty on the kizomba scene, and I had a great choice to begin with.  As I usually prefer best quality in every aspect of my life, the same applies to my blog: I write about the best of the best! This team to me represents a solid well-planned and well-managed organization, which, I believe, will survive everybody & everything else)

I first heard of the Kiztrotters when I met one of them on the dance floor, over a year ago, in my favorite place in the world – Park Futbol. A couple of months later I danced with few more and we even made friends, but then I did not know how famous they were in the kizomba world. The word “trotter” at that time said nothing to me.

My girlfriends told me that day: “You can’t even realize how lucky you are to be able to dance and party with the Kiztrotters themselves! Any girl would dye to be there on your place”. Then I thought, “Have I missed something?”))

Since then I started observing the way they work, where, how hard, what events organizers think about them, what girls say about them, what their philosophy is. I was amazed at the quantity: so many from different cities, mixed genders, ages, dance styles, etc. This is a Monster Organization! I was wondering if this big machine is ever manageable at all. Finally, I decided to talk to Mr. Jojo Lebon. The perfect opportunity popped up at their fourth Birthday Anniversary.

Jojo appeared to be a serious man, staid and very smart. He took out a piece of paper and started drawing a scheme to explain how it all started. I captured his mimics, timbre of voice and posture, and I concluded – he knew what he wanted, and he knew exactly what he was doing…

How to become a Kiztrotter?

  • Most importantly you must have a special state of mind – to really want to share your passion for dancing. In the first two to three months we test a person, which means he is travelling with us everywhere. Meantime we are evaluating him, and afterwards decide weather he stays in the team or not. If he does, then we sign a kind of Code of Conduct document.  Normally all our taxis have over 3 years of dancing experience.

What are the rules?

  • Taxi dancers always wear the same clothes at an event or a party, which always include black trousers. Exceptionally, we can wear white trousers as well. Regarding the number of dances per girl it varies between 3 or 4 maximum.

What’s your strategy?

  •  Everyone does their own thing! The responsibilities are clearly split among the members of the team, because the key is to be well-organized. Thus, there is no loss of information. In the end events organizers trust the quality of our job.  Whoever goes to make an offer to one of our taxi dancers they will redirect this person to me, because, for instance, that’s me who is responsible for contracts.

Lobbing is also a part of our strategy. I’ve danced for over 7 years, since 2010. I have already created my own source in Kizomba. As you know, Paris is the laboratory of kizomba dance. Everything started here: the first non-stop, the first blackout, the first urban-kiz, etc… I lived it all and I took advantage of the moment.

Talking about the responsibilities, who does what? 

  • We don´t have any Superior or boss, but I would highlight 5 main pillars, some of us obvoiusly also “taxing” as well:
Jojo  Ania Fred Pascal Mamady
Sales Manager Set up bookings/ Responsible girls in France Head projects Responsible men´s bookings Financial Responsible
 Negotiating contracts once the contract is signed, managing all arrangements from A to Z anniversaries, photo shootings, events, announcements,communication  pick up of full passes, food info, drinks, dancing hours, etc..  managing team´s accounts
                                                          55 Kiztrotters taxi-dancers

How does it happen in life?

  • Once the contract is approved, I pass it to Ania. She gets in touch with everyone to build a taxi dancers team for the requested event or party. People reply “yes” or “no”. Afterwards she creates a group for this event in Facebook. Also, there´s one more group created, which would include the event´s organizers. When they go to a festival there is always a Captain assigned to every project (differs each event depending on the composition of the team; normally this is one of the veterans, more capable). Even if I’m there myself, that’s him who is responsibly all the weekend. I interfere only if there’s a problem of contractual nature, like when the conditions of the contract were not respected and organizers don´t do what they had promised. Otherwise a Captain takes care of all issues starting by the food, transport & accommodation arrangements and finishing by checking dancing hours, getting tickets for drinks, bracelets, etc.

What are your plans for the nearest future?

  • We are going to recruit more taxi dancers! We will open 10 in Bordeaux, 5 in Lyon and 10 more in Paris.

Wow, this sounds crazy! You are a monster organization! I wish you good luck and continue to please us with your great performance!!

I also asked him to tell me what was his “Kiztrotters biggest dream”, but this will remain our small secret)

 

http://www.facebook.com/kiztrotters/

 

pre-party & after-party kizomba concepts

Today I speak about concepts. Those who have been dancing for a long time would wonder why. Well, there are always people who don’t know, like the beginners’ category. We have to consider them, and explain things. When I worked at Kizomba Luxembourg Festival I had a situation that made me think it over: a girl approached me with a question “What is a kizomba Taxi-dancer? How can I identify him/her? Do I have to contract him to dance with me?” Then I suddenly realized that not everything what is so obvious for you is clear for others. So, this time, instead of putting on a paper my own thoughts, I made it different: I held a small survey on the Pre-party and After-party subject, asking my friends and acquaintances in random order how they would describe to a beginner what pre-party and after-party is, their opinions, attitude, etc.… And this is what I got:

Enjoy the reading!

XXX

Pre-party is a get together with your friends and friends of your friends to get in the mood for the party. After-party is a small party after the party to continue dancing but then more in a relaxing way (with chiller music and chiller clothes/shoes). After-party arranged in a hotel room only happens when the organization didn’t organize an official after-party. I find this okay, because dancers just wanna dance as much as they can. Personally, I’m not a fan of having people over my room, so I prefer to go somewhere else. But also I’m not a huge fan of an after-party in a room, its too small that it makes me uncomfortable to dance. I like an official after-party with a real DJ and real floor.

XXX

Pre-party is a kind of warm up to get ready for the bigger Party coming up

After-party is when you don’t have enough of dancing… Enjoying the connection with the partner and you want more dancing until no end

I like private parties …being a participant

XXX

For me, there is a difference between private kizomba parties and official parties.

Private PRE-parties: personnally, I go this pre-parties to have a drink with friends/known people, to have a talk, maybe to dance a bit, it’s more like a warm up! just to prepare myself for the “party-mood”.

Official pre-party: they often happen on Thursdays and most of the kizombeiros are coming on Friday! For me, it’s like a normal party, in the week, because you see all the luxembourgish face, that you already know 😛

Private AFTER-Party: the occasion to continue dancing in the good mood, with you frieds, talk about the party, continue drinking. But some other songs (for example funana), just for fun, do some “tarraxha-battles” and crazy stuff like this.

Offical AFTER-party: I really don’t like this after parties, 90% of slow songs and I have the impression that this goes more on a sexual way …

XXX

What a girl thinks: nice I have been invited to a pre-party / after-party, let’s try to get to know the people/ dancers/DJs/ organizers better

What a guy thinks: great! Which girl would probably have sex with me before/ after?

XXX

I think a pre-party is good way to gather people together to chat before parties, don’t prefer to stay myself too long as usually involves a lot of drinking and might miss most of the party and dancing, wouldn’t want to have it in my room as involves some effort for the host plus sometimes more people show up than expected and get out of hands.

After-parties not my thing as usually by that time it is more like a match making event .

In general a pre-party is are good way to get into the mood for the dance party by gathering people if anyway staying in one hotel or if scattered around, parties usually too loud to properly talk and people in different corners so a pre-party is a nice way to begin the evening.

after-parties are good if main party finishes too early and want people want more to dance, chat etc but usually as I said too late hours make it much more of hooking up with somebody rather than dancing etc

XXX
I personally don’t see any problem neither with pre-party nor with after parties. I think it’s a good way to continue the party or to prolong it in case organizers finish parties very early or start it very late because of shows, animations etc.
It’s usually small parties either organized by official promoters/organizers or by private person who invite people they know and these people invite people they know. The atmosphere in pre/after-parties is more relaxed, girls often don’t wear dancing shoes and its often more about hanging out, chatting and drinking together than ‘hardcore’ dancing
I prefer ‘official’ after-parties in an extra room and DJs than on a carpet in the hotel room and with a speaker.
I like the pre-parties at the hotel rooms – meeting some people, having a drink and only then going to the main party.
But it always depends on people who invite. In some case these kind of parties are seen as a green light for the further ‘activities’, so I prefer to do these kind of parties only with the people I know to avoid the uncomfortable situations
I don’t organize pre-party or after parties. I prefer to keep my hotel room as my private sphere. If my friends invite me, I usually attend them.

XXX

Pre-party are ok. I like it (if there is enough time) .. to get in the mood, socialize, have some fun, drinks something.. it’s really nice..

But the after parties if I have to explain them..; It’s a party after the regular party.. if you are not done dancing you can go there but mostly those after-parties (depending where they are) are all about sex ..

In my opinion an after-party is not necessary.. Most of the time the regular night party ends at 6 in the morning.. why would you continue dancing ..

So after parties it depends on your mood.. If you are horny go for that intention.. of the party stopped to early you can go dancing.. But it all depends on the concept and location.

I don’t go to afters because I think it’s for whores, if it is in a hotel room.

Unless I have a relation/romance with someone who invites me.. and if it’s just socializing nothing trashy then it’s ok lol

XXX

In a room with mixed feelings, officially organized in big room really good idea. Cause its not really about dancing

XXX

For me an after-party means dancing. For many people it means kissing, touching, sex?
Well, if you fit very well with somebody it can be more close. But that can also happen on the normal dancefloor. That can be very nice as long as you know the boarders. Well, some people do not have boarders
I think after-parties are more dangerous because often its dark, slow music, cozy atmosphere…
Normally I am invited for those parties.
The good thing: most of the time it´s the same amount of boys and girls. And: only good dancers and its really relaxed, no showing off.
No-go for me are those parties in the pool… not my style.
Pre-parties are more for warming up, drinking… they are fine. Nice to have.
Oh and just to mention: the official “afters” are nice to have but the smaller private ones are more exclusive most of the time

XXX

After-parties I only did once so Ii can’t really tell. Nevertheless I didn’t like it much because there was a break between the party and the after-party and difficult to get back in the mood .
Private room after-parties Ii never did, but I don’t think it would suit me . Everybody is tired after a party ( if you danced a lot) , also normally there is no space and most people go there “pour coller”/ or have another chance to finish the evening with someone. So for me it’s not so much about dancing anymore .
On the other side I like pre-party , it’s like an ” ouverture” to the main party , not too much people / everybody exited to see again and what the main party/ festival will bring .

XXX

Pre-party for me as a warm up before a Party if you don’t wanna go there early but still want to chat dance drink and chill with people you know. It is also a way of get to know new people, since you don’t get to talk and chill at the party. It is a good way to socialize since it is relaxed. At the party there is not much time for socializing. People are stressed, want to look good dance, impress or whatever.

After-party for me is for those who are not tired yet and still can dance or haven’t danced at the party. I am aware that many people see/use it for other purposes.
I think girls should be aware of that too when they go to an after-party. It doesn’t mean that all after-parties are the same. Actually all the after-parties I have been to didn’t end up with naked people. But I have heard stories

XXX

When I first heard about the pre-party /after-party my initial idea of this was that people gathered together to have few drinks, a chat, a laugh, some dancing before or after an evening party at a festival.

After few years in kizomba scene, I can tell you that for me pre-party and after-parties are now about an actual party only with my own group of friends… If it’s just girls we can get ready together, have few drinks, laugh, talk about things etc.…ifs it’s a mix between girl and guy friends then we can also include some dances to the above list..

If however, you are invited to a pre or after party by a kizomba teacher, DJ, taxi or just a guy you don’t really know but danced with once or twice, then expect that you will be seduced into more than just dancing! Or the dancing will become to sensual, too close, it will get too hot .. No wonder why most of the people now associate after parties with sex. If you are arriving to an after party and find yourself with the guy alone, then definitely expect that he is expecting to sleep with you. If you arrive to an after party and there are other people, and you dance with one guy most of the time or the whole night, and exchange some smiles and sweet words, then even if you don’t sleep with him people will be talking that you either already did, or definitely will J

XXX

TANTRA vs KIZOMBA

I first learned about Tantra when I was 12. My neighbor next door did tantra practices, which made me very curious about the subject. I knew it was related somehow to sex, although not exactly. It sounded mysterious to my young inexperienced mind,  so asking myself lots of questions it stuck in my memory till I discovered kizomba dance. That´s when I realized “It sounds familiar to me… hmm… Tantra?”

Once my neighbor told me: “It’s when you can have orgasm without even touching each other

WHAT IS TANTRA

The original concept of Tantra comes from Sanskrit तन्त्र, which literally means “continuity”, “connection”, “thread”. Tantra is an art of interaction on different levels: body, energy and consciousness. It is a conscious work with energies – internal and external.

The basis of Tantra is the classical Indian dance. Hindu dancers know all of the energy channels that are included under a certain position, their interaction with the partner, the flow of energy throughout the body. This dance, for the most part, is purely improvisational, activates the chakras, and the harmony of this depends on the skill of the dancer. Ancient and modern Taoists call this process the interaction of Yin and Yang.

It gives a greater degree of intimacy, adjustment to each other and mutual understanding, the ability to listen and hear each other, a new way of communication.

This is a practice for those who want to study emotions at a deeper level, to communicate with oneself and with a partner. Working with energy throughout the body is one of the most important components of this path. It presents the techniques of breathing and self-regulation, active mental and motor practice.

TANTRA DANCE

   Sacral, spontaneous, energy dance! It does not matter what movements we do, the main thing here is the awareness of the process, the process of creation, the creation of space. The tantric principle expressed as the interaction of two universal opposite principles, who are in their essence, as one.

Tantric dance is a meditative exercise for freeing the soul, increasing vitality, preparing the mind for the state of deep trance and the way to make the body more mobile. Tantric Dance helps to bring emotional balance, joy & well-being into daily life, relieve you of internal stress, raise the energy of kundalini; relieve tension in the genital area, which positively affects sexual relations; awaken spiritual forces, creativity & eroticism, the ability to feel energy within oneself, etc…

TANTRA vs KIZOMBA

   Does anything sounds like KIZOMBA to you??

Since I dance kizomba I’ve always been comparing it to Tantra in my mind… But obviously we, kizomba dancers, don’t know anything  about chakras, energy channels, how to activate anything, etc… (well, I know because I have studied it, but a normal person doesn’t). We don’t know, but we FEEL!!! We just DANCE and FEEL… This is the unconscious knowledge that drives us to dance more with one partner or another.

Men could wonder why I dance sometimes so closely.     Does this mean I “invite” them for more?   Is it the “Green Light“?    Am I a dissatisfied woman looking for some warmth and affection?

You know what?  Some people don’t need to be that close to feel the energy of a partner. It’s like in Reiki: I can physically apply my hands on your body, or I can just keep them over the body at a short distance – the effect is the same. But some people don’t mind me touching them; they even ask for it in order to feel better the energy flow, because they simply enjoy physical contact. While others prefer to avoid it. We are all different! What one likes and considers “normal”, “acceptable”, “decent” – someone else considers as “too much”, “extravagant” or “vulgar”. Each person has his own ideas about the same thing, and they may not and need not to coincide with the opinion of another.

Example:

How many times I’ve heard from some girlfriend “Oh he’s an AMAZING dancer!!!”, then I danced with him and was disappointed, because I didn’t feel half of what my friend told me. Each of us attracts certain type of energies. This is for sure.

Importance of the body contact

I like to be touched. I like going to the hairdresser and having my hair washed…uumm yummi!!! I like visiting Beauty Centers and having treatments for my face and body, applying all kinds of scrubs & masks. I Love all types of massages. Even just when my back is scrached:))

Obviously, I don’t let everyone to get that close in a dance, but for me personally it’s difficult to understand the leading from a partner when he is too far from me. I lose control of my body. I need to have more body contact. There are really few dancers able to lead so well that they can stand quite far and I will understand what exactly they want from me. To me they are the best dancers ever!!! (no names here LOL).  But the rest is for “douceur”! In other words, for Tantra!

So, is it so bad to enjoy the way a partner makes waves with his belly? For me it´s magical!!! For me sometimes a dance is better than sex.

EMOTIONS

What really makes me wonder, is the emotional part, that is different from Tantra. Unfortunately this part is very poor in Kizomba. There’s no deep emotional connection. Inspite all its intimacy, sometimes there’s no emotional connection at all in kizomba… Should I think it’s because we haven’t gone far from animals?   And,  given expriences of some friends,  even when it comes to sex, there’s nothing else but physical part. It still surprises me a lot.

the WHY

Thinking of WHY…   Too much choice? Too easy? Too much diversity? Too much rotation?  Does it make us less sensitive? Don´t we have time to dive deeper? Are we scared to make it right? Scared to GIVE? To TRUST? To GO FURTHER? Or we just DON’T CARE?

All these contradictions, the paradox of such a strong connection in the dance and such a poor connection in sex, are still issues to be analyzed… We still have a long way to perfection and true feelings.

But this article is written to make you think about it, to be more conscious of our bodies, and especially, not to separate them from our souls!

Dj Saï Saï – The walking legend – about himself and the Kizomba

Dj Saï Saï Interview – ENGLISH VERSION: 

Version française en bas ⇓

If you know what is “kizomba” than for sure you know who is Dj Saï Saï, as this person is one of the pioneers in the Kizomba dance world. Those who would like to know how it all started should ask him. He was there! Now I was lucky to hear some of these stories, and proud and happy to share them with you!)

I remembered his music before I remembered his face and his name. He has always been an often guest in Luxembourg at our local parties and obviously our festivals. When I started dancing DJ Sai Sai was the first European DJ I met, as I wasn´t going on dancing trips yet. Since I talked to him for the first time, I could always distinguish his irresistible smile and positive vibes. Hope that explains a little bit why he is the first kizomba DJ in my blog.

Dj Saï Saï or Saïdou was born in Senegal 34 years ago. When he was 6 months old, he moved (better say “was moved”) to France. From the conversation, I understood he considers himself a French man. Bla bla bla… The official part is over. Surely, you all can find this information somewhere in social red, but let´s start

the interview:

  • When you don´t work, what do you do in your real life?

When I don´t work I sleep… go for sport, compose music, playstation with my friends.. – sitting comfortably in front of me, smiling, with a drink in one hand and a Voice Recorder in another one. He had promised to speak slowly so that I could understand his French. 

  • Playstation?

FIFA

  • What´s your favorite team?

PSG (Paris St.Germain).    My ordinary life:  I spend 90% of time on my own. I can spend 4 days locked up at home without any problem. This is what I do when I don´t work. Voila! 

  • When you are on your own, do you listen to music?

All the time

  • What kind of music does Dj Saï Saï listen to? Kizomba?

Kizomba or French variety. French music like Goldman, Celine Dion, Johnny Hallyday. I don´t listen to RAP, because I don´t like it. I listen a little bit to American music, Reggy and Soal,  I adore Zouk…  But I don´t listen to RAP. I don´t like RAP.  I like French music.  Upon my inspiration.

  • On Facebook you have two accounts as Dj Saï Saï. Is there any difference between them?

There´s no difference. It´s because on Facebook there are 5000 contacts per account and once you hit this ceiling you cannot receive more requests. So I had to create a new one in order to be able to accept everyone.

  • And you are that Good Guy to accept everyone?))

Yeaaa, I´m the best of the best! In fact, 90% of my contacts in Facebook are from Kizomba, and the rest 10% are my friends. And I don´t have many friends. Thus, that´s why I created two accounts. I had to do the cleaning. I removed “friends in common” and I made some space for others. Because at some point I arrived at 5000 on each account, so I had 10000 in total. I deleted 1600 to make some space. The problem in fact is that when I mix at a festival, like today (the interview took place during a festival) I get 50 requests. When I mix in Luxembourg I can get 100 requests.

  • Each time?

Yesss! All the time. People don´t know me. They listen to music, but they don´t know me. They want to know what I am. If they want to know what I mix, they start following me on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram, etc…

  • I have a question about friends. Do you have real friends in Kizomba world, those you can really trust and rely on? Do you separate you professional and your private life?

In Kizomba I have acquaintances. It´s called “acquaintances”. Many of them I appreciate and others I don´t trust. However, I have more friends than non-friends in kizomba, but they are anyway your acquaintances. Once the party is over, everyone goes home and “Salut!”. Well, whom I really appreciate in Kizomba from DJs that I´ve known for a long time are DJ Gass. We met when we were 15 y.o. We were mixing in the afternoons at the time in Paris. It´s Madiss, who helped me develop myself.  I also have a good relationship with Leda and, I get on very well with everybody in general, but I´m more close with Gass and Madiss, with whom we talk a lot, we call each other, we meet outside Kizomba world. It´s been also years since I know Valet.

  • Are they those who you can tell about your personal life?

As I said, my personal life I keep only for myself. No I don´t. It´s more like when we meet, we have fun together, we work together, but in my personal life I manage myself from A to Z.  If I have a problem, I don´t ask my family to help me. If I have a problem, it is MY problem. I do everything myself, on my own, like managing my planning, my database. I manage my taxi dancers team…

  • This is exactly my next question!

I manage my artists. I have two artists.

  • What do you mean by “my artists”?

In fact, I have a music label – I produce. I have already produced a track with Sandro “Já Não Sei”(2015) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=If62kZ7aS2c , who recently was No.1 of Top 10 for 1 month in Portugal. Now I´m working on a production of a new artist. I take care of everything myself.

  • You are very artistic with a lot of imagination.

It´s my work! I was a musician when I was young. I played battery for 5 years and, at the same time, I played professional handball.  

  • You do like sport a lot!

You can see it! Jajaja LOL  (demonstrating me his biceps)

  • Well, let´s get to your taxi team. Why did you decide to do it? There are so many, especially in Paris!

Yes, there are many teams. However, there are Teams and there are “teams”. You have the Kiztrotters, who are well known, who work very very well!  (Kiztrotters, catch a compliment from Dj Saï Saï! LOL) Then you have SK Team, Gwany´s team VVK, Ludo´s one LS Kizz, and now you have SS Team – SaiSai Team. Why I did it? Because I have a couple of guys, Shawn and Will, who go everywhere with me when I travel by car, like Luxembourg, Belgium, etc… They are good dancers.  In addition, when I get calls I´m asked if I could bring some dancers with me. So, I was asked once, than twice…

  • Oh then it was not your idea? You were “pushed” to create it?

Yes, it was also foreseen. I will explain you: I´ve been mixing for 19 years. I´m 34 now. When I was 23 yo, I bought a pub and I was its owner for 7 years. It was called “Tropical Bar” .

  • Dj Saï Saï seems to be a real Business Man! LOL

I took it after my father. And, well, I my pub there were courses of salsa, kizomba, bachata, etc… And I started kizomba in 2008, in the pub.

  • Tony Pirata wasn´t even famous at that time yet!

He was the person with whom I started working. The first course he gave in France was in my pub. I also met Isabelle and Felicien for the first time there at that time. I will show you the photos! Everything is here! (We spent some minutes in his mobile, so I re-confirm, he has a proof to his words!)

  • Do you have so much space in your telephone to store all this stuff? LOL

I have everything here! Wait! Don´t move!  I´ll show you one video

I was wondering how can Dj Saï Saï keep all this information in his mobile, and find it so easily every time. I have waited for 2 seconds. It was in front of my eyes – his lunch with Pingusso, Rodney and Pirata, who started talking to the camera. He explained that long time ago the place to be was a Tropical bar, but it is in the past. Everything has changed and now it is AM Restaurant, “Vamos Dançar Yvelines” (https://www.facebook.com/letropical.bar ) and he made a little promotion to their current weekly parties and workshops.  (https://www.facebook.com/events/1395831560428344 )

Dj Saï Saï continued:

It´s just to say that I´m one of the first. Now it´s AM Restaurant. I rent it and I mix there.  So, in kizomba I was there one of the first. And also thanks to Atim, the singer. Atim is my best friend. He is my neighbor. He lives near my house. We grew up together. We meet every day, going info sport together and doing many more things.  So how it happened: Atim came to the Tropical Bar and he told me “Sai, there´s something you should try!” What Kizomba is I didn´t know. I knew Le Passade. At the time, it was that, in 2003-2004 it was La Passade Cabverdienne. My bartender was a cabeverdian girl. He invited her to dance. That´s how the piece “FOFU” (CABO LOVE) with MARiSA was born. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_r_y4GMFHo . So he invited her for a dance, and they danced kizomba in front of me. I said “I don´t know what it is, but I like it very much!” I was dancing bachata, but to me it seemed even better. And it´s him who introduced me to Tony Pirata. That´s how it all started… For one year it was just us, me and him.

  • You and Tony?

Yea, and afterwards he invited us to Metropolis (one of the first night clubs in Paris with Kizomba) when he composed “Gosta Bue”  And afterwards, well, there was everyone else, but for me the pillar is Tony Pirata, Symeone, Morenasso, Tecas…

  • Is it how it all started?

Yes! Everything has started like that. Then you have Moun, Curtis, Enah, and all that…that´s it!

  • Now how many taxi dancers do you have in your team?

 Thirty. Twenty SS team1guys and ten girls.

–  I´ve never seen them. Where do they dance?

Everywhere! For example, tonight they dance in Paris…  (If you are interested in more information about Dj Saï Saï team, there is an official page in Facebook with all photos and details about each member of the team: https://www.facebook.com/sst78/?fref=ts )

 

He changed subject by showing me again the first kizomba song of Atim; we listened to it for a little while;

 This is the song, which showed me kizomba! This song is the starting point!  Then, this is the artist that I told you I had produced –Sandro – Dj Saï Saï played me another song, which I realized I knew very well, –

 This song was born in my living room. I am currently working with a new artist. This is the future! – He turned his mobile screen again to me and I saw a nice girl, rehearsing in front of a microphone, –

It is in my place. She is my singer. This is the test, we continued to listen a bit more…

  • One more question: your music for me is very romantic. Are you in life as your music is? Are you a romantic person?

Saïdou is like this. When I compose, it is me, Saidou. At home it is simple. There is no alcohol. I do not drink alcohol.

  • Jajaja )))

I only drink at weekends. I do that to relax, to be Dj Saï Saï, to make myself visible to people, to talk to everyone. This is my work; we must not forget about it.  As weekend-festivals are tiring: days – nights- days- nights, socials- night parties-socials-night parties, I have to mix, than I have to talk a little bit, dance a little bit, to do this, to do that,  alcohol helps me smile to everyone and be more relaxed towards people; also to understand better in English LOL. I try to make an effort to speak it when I drink alcohol. It makes me be more sociable, more out-going.  The real Saïdou is a very reserved and quiet person. I´m also a little bit sentimental. I am what my music is. I like a lot French variety as I told you.

  • You have your own Dj Saï Saï style. I can always recognize your music.

Every Dj has its own style. My melody is like this. I am more “douceur”.

  • I see. Especially the last Senegalese composition “The Beauty Of Sénégal Kiz”. To me it’s very beautiful, but not that comfortable for dancing. I thought that the main instrument was a guitar, by the way.

No, it was Cora. It is like the Arphe in France, we have the Cora. In fact, I wrote this song for Midi Station Festival (Brussels, December 2016). As I was asked to write something exclusive for them, and at the same time as I am from Senegal – voala! Done!  As everyone re-mixes everything, why wouldn´t I write something myself? As I am Senegalese. That’s why I did it.

  • That is when I got interested in Senegal! I listened to it and I told myself “Hmmm, would be interesting to visit this country one day”

Yea, there is a festival very soon in Senegal – Dakar Kizomba Congress! (https://www.facebook.com/groups/943298679094448/?fref=ts 25-31 October 2017, Dj Saï Saï will be present there!!!!) I am going to mix in my country. You can come if you want.  You won’t regret it! Everything is included in the Full Pass: airline tickets, accommodation and the entrance fees. And the food is very cheap over there.

  • Are you taking part in its organization or just mix?

I’m a Dj. I also present the festival, obviously, because I am Senegalese.

  • Is it the first time?

Yes, it’s my first time.  In addition, my family lives there.

  • Isn’t it dangerous for me to go there on my own?

Oh no, not at all!!  There are many white people. It’s absolutely safe. For them, by the way, I’m white. Because I live in France, I work in France. When I go to Senegal, they know that I’m not from there. They know it. And they see it. They see my piercings, my style, how I am dressed.

When I speak Senegalese I have a French accent. When I walk, I walk like French. They see it. Piercing does not exist there. For them I am French.

  • Do French people realize that you are from Senegal?

Of course! You only have to see the marks here (he pointed out at the temples on his face). They were made for purification.  It’s the culture. It’s our religion. All Senegalese who you would meet in France have those marks. My elder brother and I did them as well.

  • Do you have brother or sisters?

We are five brothers and one sister. And the others didn’t want to do it, they don’t have them (the marks). I did it when I was a baby. You have to do it when you are a baby. It’s like a tattoo, it stays forever. It brings luck, for purifying, for the future.

  • You seem to be lucky! LOL

I have worked for that. When I started mixing, I was very young. At the time, I was mixing for nothing. I did not have much money.

  • Have your parents ever helped you?

No. I have done always everything myself. Absolutely everything: from A to Z.

  • Great! Now, what is the best part of your Dj Saï Saï life?

First of all, it’s my passion. It´s like a hobby and I do it for living at the same time, but it has always been my passion. Recently there are many DJs who come to Kizomba, because they would like to be recognized, well known, to travel, to take advantage of all what includes to be a DJ. Basically, to be a Kizomba Dj you have to be first just a DJ. And there are not many real DJs, those who have worked for 10-15-20 years. I have mixed cabo love, zouk, dancehall, house, reggaeton, hip-hop, funk; everything, all the styles! I had my room from 10 pm to 6 am, where I had to mix on my own all the night long. Meanwhile in Kizomba you mix only for 1-2 hours. For me to mix the whole night is not a problem.

The problem now is with all that new technology, small control machines. Everyone wants to become a DJ. They buy a MAC, a controller and they already can mix as well, but they know nothing about music. It’s a job one must know. Now you have plenty of false Djs. It became very accessible to everyone nowadays. The majority do it because it’s cool (“A la mode”), ‘cause they can travel, etc… They only see this in fact, but I don´s see it like that. That’s how you recognize a real DJ –  by the way he mixes, by the way he observes clients, etc… If everyone had this passion to mix, they would have started to mix well before the Kizomba. When Kizomba has appeared, it became very fassionable, and everyone got into it, because there are girls, travel, money, … go! They say: “Ok, I’ll be a DJ, because I like Kizomba”. However, they come and they do not know how to mix. It is not good.

  • Have you ever refused a job offer because you are tired of travelling, and you just preferred to stay home in order to have some rest?

Never.  As I have told you, I am a very solitary lonesome person.

  • Is it the same feeling to be in a hotel room as at home?

It is similar. If there is a TV, music, a computer and additionally a play station – it’s the same. That is what I do usually at home. But there’s something else when I travel: I meet people, I improve on my English, I share what I’ve created. Thus, it is important for me to travel in order to share out what I have done, what I have worked on. When people listen to me in the internet it’s great, but in life it’s even better.

  • Do you have favorite festivals?

Yes! Luxembourg! I was wearing its T-shirt today.

  • Yeaa, I paid attention to it! Bravoo!!!

I will tell you what my favorite festivals are: Luxembourg “International Kizomba FestivalKZL”! For me it’s Number One.  O’KIZ, I adored it. It was magnificent!! I will go there again this year. It’s also PKC (Paris Kizomba Congress), which is also magnificent. Then, “I’M YOUR DJ”, it’s in my Top5. At this moment, it’s all. There’s one more, which is becoming one of my favorites – Universal Kiz. This year I loved it. Although there was a weird planning, in Belgium it was quite good.

  • Why Luxembourg is the best? I consider it the best for myself as well. Trying to compare it objectively with others, I find it super good.

It’s the best festival for all artists. Why?  Because the organization and the location are perfect. And it’s comfortable. The first edition took part in the Novotel Hotel. Everything was happening in that hotel. There was a shuttle that took us to night parties’ location. In the mornings, everyone had breakfast all together, and afterwards we all played FIFA, because there was a playstation with TV. And the rooms were Suites. Every 5 seconds we were asked:”Dj Saï Saï, is everything OK?”, “Do you need anything else?”, “Anything to drink? This? That?” Etc… There was a dressing room, there was everything! KZL is the best festival! The best!  O’KIZ takes the second place. In fact, it is simple, it depends on the Meteo: in spring it’s KZL, in summer it’s O’KIZ, in autumn I’M YOUR DJ and in winter PKC. They are my Top 4.

  • Let’s switch to your Playlist now. When you go to a festival, do you always prepare it in advance or improvise on place? Does it depend on the county or a type of a festival you go?

I never prepared any playlist.   

  • Inspiration?

That is! Inspiration! I´m always updated, trying to find new music.  I adopt myself to other DJs all the time. This is what is called experience.

  • You come and see what others have just mixed before you and you continue with a different thing? And you have all the music always with you?

Yes. That´s how I work.  Yes, I have absolutely everything with me. If the previous one mixed tarraxa I would mix douceur.  So I adopt myself. I never know what will be the next. I think meanwhile I´m mixing.  While I mix, I have a motor in my mind, thinking what to play next, so there is a smooth transition. This is my work. This is what makes me to be here. When you listen to my complete mix, you will see that everything mixes by itself.

 

With these words I´m finishing the conversation, thanking endlessly Dj Saï Saï for his time and for his willingness to answer all questions.

———————————————————————————————————————————–

VERSION FRANCAIS:

La légende Dj Saï Saï

Si vous connaissez le mot « kizomba », vous connaissez surement qui est Dj Saï Saï, car cette personne est l’un des pionniers dans le monde de la Kizomba. Ceux qui voudraient savoir comment tout a commencé devraient lui demander. Il était là ! Maintenant, j’ai eu la chance d’entendre certaines de ces histoires, et je suis très fière et heureuse de les partager avec vous !

Je reconnaissais sa musique avant que j’ai commencé à reconnaître son visage et son nom. Il a été souvent invité au Luxembourg à nos fêtes locales et évidemment à nos festivals. Quand j’ai commencé à danser, Dj Saï Saï a été le premier DJ européen que j’ai rencontré, car je n’allais pas encore aux dancing trips.

Depuis que je lui ai parlé pour la première fois, je pouvais toujours distinguer son sourire irrésistible et vibes positives. J’espère que cela explique un peu pourquoi il est le premier DJ dans mon blog.

 

Dj Saï Saï o Saïdou est né au Sénégal il y a 34 ans. Quand il avait 6 mois, il a déménagé (ou je dirais mieux qu’il « a été déplacé ») en France. Après cette conversation, j’ai compris qu’il se considère comme un homme Français. Bla bla bla … La partie officielle est terminée. Sûrement, vous pouvez trouver toute cette information quelque part dans le net, mais commençons l’entrevue :

  • Qu’est-ce que tu fais quand tu ne travailles pas dans ta vie quotidienne ?

Quand je ne travaille pas c’es do-do, sport, composition music, PlayStation avec mes amis, …– assis confortablement devant moi, souriant, avec un verre dans une main et un enregistreur vocal dans un autre. Il avait promis de parler lentement pour que je comprenne son français.

  • PlayStation ?

Fifa, Call of duty.

  • Quelle est ton équipe préférée ?

Le PSG (Paris St-Germain).

A la base c’est ça ma vie quotidienne. A la base je passe 90 % de mon temps tout seul et je peux rester 4 jours enfermé chez moi, il n’y a pas de problème. Voilà, ce que je fais.

  • Quand tu es tout seul, écoutes-tu de la musique ?

Tout le temps.

  • Quel genre de musique Dj Saï Saï écoute-t-il ?

Kizomba ou variété française. Les chanteurs français comme Goldman, Céline Dion, Johny Halliday, tout ce qui est chanson française, je n’écoute pas de rap, j’aime pas. J’écoute un peu de musique américaine : Reggy, soul, zouk – j’adore. J’écoute beaucoup de variété française pour l’inspiration.

  • Tu es né en France ?

Non, je suis né au Sénégal. Je suis arrivé en France quand j’avais 6 mois, donc c’est presque pareil – je suis né, j’ai pris l’avion et je suis venu en France. Sénégalais de nature et de nationalité Française.

  • Sur Facebook tu as deux DjSaï Saï comptes. Y-a-t-il la différence entre les deux ?

Il n’y a pas de différence, à Facebook tu as 5000 de contactes et tu ne peux plus recevoir d’invitations. 90 % de gens sur Facebook, c’est kizomba et tout le reste c’est 10% ce sont des amis, je n’ai pas beaucoup d’amis. Donc, c’est pour ça j’ai crée deux comptes. Il fallait que je fasse le nettoyage pour libérer de la place pour les amis quand il y avait un moment quand les deux étaient bloqués à 5000.

Cela faisait 10000 contactes, donc j’ai dû enlever 1600 personnes pour faire de la place. Après les festivals, par exemple comme aujourd’hui, quand je rentre il y a 50 invitations. Quand je mixe à Luxembourg, je vais avoir 100 invitations…

  • A chaque fois ?

Oui, je vais tout le temps avoir des nouvelles invitations. Les gens ne me connaissent pas, la plupart écoute ma musique mais ils ne me connaissent pas. Dès qu’ils voient le personnage, ils écoutent ce que je fais en mixe, forcement ils s’intéressent donc ils me suivent. Ils me rajoutent sur Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc., …

  • Concernant les amis, j’ai encore une question. As-tu des vrais amis dans le mode de Kizomba, à ceux que tu peux vraiment faire confiance ? Sépares-tu ta vie professionnelle et ta vie privée ?

Dans la kizomba j’ai des connaissances, on appelle ça « des connaissances », beaucoup que j’apprécie et d’autres je me méfie. Mais j’ai plus d’amis que « pas amis » dans kizomba. Cela reste quand même plus de connaissances. Tu vois, quand la soirée est finie, tout le monde rentre chez soi – « salut ! ». Après vraiment dans la kizomba vraiment ceux que j’apprécie beaucoup – Gass, quand on s‘est connu on avait 15 ans, mais c’était que des après-midi à l ‘époque à Paris. Madiss, qui m’a aidé à me développer. C’est aussi Leda, je m’entends bien avec tout le monde mais après les affinités pures c’est plus avec Gass et Madiss avec qui on parle beaucoup, on s’appelle, on se voit en dehors. Après Valet ça fait des années qu’on se connaît.

  • Est-ce que tu peux leur parler de ta vie professionnelle ?

Non, comme je t’ai dit ma vie personnelle ça ne regarde que moi. Non, c’est plus on est là, on va rigoler ensemble, travailler ensemble. Moi je suis quelqu’un qui se débrouille tout seul d’A à Z. Je ne demanderais à personne même si j’ai un problème je demande pas ma famille, c’est mon problème. Et je gère tout tout seule, comme je gère mon planning à moi, je gère mes dates, c’est moi qui gère tout. Je gère mon équipe de taxis, j’ai 30 taxis, …

  • C’est justement ma prochaine question !

Je gère mes artistes, mes deux artistes…

  • C’est quoi comme artistes ?

En fait, j’ai un label de musique, je produis. J’ai déjà produit un morceau avec Sandro « Jà Nao Sei » (2015) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=If62kZ7aS2c, ça fait un moment que je l’ai sorti, mais qui était numéro 1 dans le Top 10 pendant un mois au Portugal. Je produis des nouveaux artistes maintenant. Je produis moi-même, je me débrouille tout seule.

  • Tu es très artistique, tu as beaucoup d’imagination.

C’est mon travail ! J’étais musicien quand j’étais jeune. Je jouais de la basse et de la batterie. J’en ai joué pendant 5 ans et à coté j’étais un handballeur professionnel.

  • Tu aimes bien le sport !

Ça se voit ! hahaha

  • Ok, revenons à ton équipe de taxi. Pourquoi tu as décidé de le faire ? Il y a tellement, surtout à Paris !

Oui, mais il ya Teams and il y a « teams ». Kiztrotters qui sont connus, qui travaillent très bien. (Kiztrotters, attrapez un compliment de Dj Saï Saï! LOL) Après tu as SK Team, Gwany’s team VVK, Ludo’s LS KIZZ et tu as maintenant SST – Dj Saï Saï Team. Pourquoi je les ai créées parce que j’ai deux gars à moi – Shawn et Will qui viennent partout avec moi ou je me déplace – Luxembourg, Belgique et tout ça. Ils sont des bons danseurs. Et quand j’ai des appels on m’a souvent demandé : « Est-ce que tu peux ramener quelques danseurs avec toi ? ». Donc à force de ramener des danseurs, …

  • Donc c’est parce que tu étais obligé de le faire ?

Non, je voulais aussi le faire. Cela fait 19 ans que je mix…

  • Tu es vieux ! haha

J’ai 34 ans. A 23 ans j’ai acheté un pub, j’étais patron pendant 7 ans. Il s’appelait « Tropical Bar ».

  • Dj Saï Saï est vraiment un businessman ! haha

Je tiens ça de mon père. En fait, dans mon pub, on donnait des cours de salsa, de bachata, kizomba etc. J’ai commencé la kizomba en 2008 dans mon pub.

  • Tony Pirata n’était même pas encore connu à cette époque !

C’est donc avec Toni Pirata que j’ai commencé. Toni Pirata a donné le premier cours en France c’était chez moi, dans mon pub. J´ai également connu Isabelle et Felicien dans mon pub à cette époque. Attends, je te montre les photos.

  • Tu as de l’espace pour toutes tes photos ?

J’ai tout ici. Attends, bouge pas. Je te montre la vidéo.

Je me demandais comment il peut avoir toute cette information dans son téléphone ans s’orienter aussi facilement. J’ai attendu 2 secondes. C’étais devant mes yeux – son déjeuner avec Pingusso, Rodney et Pirata, qui a commencé parler sur la caméra. Il a expliqué qu’il y a longtemps l’endroit était « Tropical Bar » tropical, mais c’était dans le passé. Tout est changé, maintenant c’est AM Restaurant, « Vamos Dançar Yvelines » (https://www.facebook.com/letropical.bar ) and il a fait un peu de la pub pour leur soirées et workshops. (https://www.facebook.com/events/1395831560428344 )

Dj Saï Saï continuait :

C’est juste pour montrer que j’étais tout au début, l’un des premiers dans la kizomba. Maintenant c’est AM Resaurant. Je loue et je mix là-bas. Aussi grâce à Atim, le chanteur. Atim est mon meilleur ami. C’est mon voisin. Il habite à coté de chez moi. On se voit souvent et on va au sport ensemble, on fait tout. Ce qui s’est passé : Atim est passé chez moi et il m’a dit : « Sai, j’ai un truc, il faut que tu essaie. Je lui ai dit que je ne connaissais pas Kizomba. Je connaissais Le Passade. A l’époque c’était ça, dans les 2003-2004 c’était La Passade Cabverdienne. Ma barman était cabverdienne. Il l’a invité danser. C’est comme ça que le morceau « FOFU » (Cabo Love) avec Marisa était crée. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_r_y4GMFHo Il a dansé la kizomba devant moi. Je me suis dit : « Je ne sais pas ce que c’est mais j’aime bien ». Je dansais bien la bachata donc pour moi c’était un plus. Et c’est là qu’il m’a presenté Tony Pirata. Et là on a commencé et pendant un an on était tout seul.

  • Toi et Tony ?

Oui, après il nous a invité à Metropolis (l‘un des premiers clubs de nuit à Paris avec Kizomba) quand il a composé « Gosta Bue ». Et après il y avait les autres, mais pour moi les piliers c’étaient Tony Pirata, Symeone, Morenasso, Tecas,…

  • C’est comme ça que tout a commencé ?

C’est ça. Tu as aussi Moun, Curtis, Enah et tout ça… et c’est tout !

  • Combien de taxi danseurs as-tu dans ton équipe ?

Trente. Vingt gars et dix filles.

  • Je ne les ai jamais vu. Ou dansent-ils ?

Partout ! Par exemple ce soir ils dansent à Paris…   (Si vous êtes intéressé par plus d’informations sur l’équipe de Dj Saï Saï, il y a une page officielle dans Facebook avec toutes les photos et détails sur chaque membre de l’équipe : https://www.facebook.com/sst78/?fref=ts)

C’est le premier morceau de kizomba de Atim, c’est celui là.

Cette chanson là qui m’a montré la kizomba. C’est avec ce morceau que tout est parti. C’est l’artiste que je produis – Sandro. – Il me fait écouter une autre chanson, que je connaissais bien.

Cette chanson était née dans mon salon. C’est moi qui le produis.  C’est l’avenir ! – Il a tourné l’écran de son portable et j’ai vu une jolie fille en répétition avec le micro.

C’est chez moi. Ma nouvelle artiste. C’est le test.

  • Pour moi ta musique est très romantique. Dans la vie tu es aussi comme ça ? Es-tu une personne romantique ?

Saidou est comme ça. Quand je compose, c’est Saidou. Quand je suis à la maison, je suis simple. Il n’y a pas d’alcool. Je ne bois pas d’alcool.

  • Hahahaha

Je ne bois que le weekend. Pour me détendre, pour être Dj Saï Saï, pour être visible aux gens, pour parler avec les autres. C’est mon travail, on ne doit pas oublier ça. Vu que festival c’est fatiguant – jour/ nuit/ sociale, soirée/ sociale, … On mixe la sociale l’après-midi, le soir après il faut aller danser un peu, parler avec les gars, faut faire ci et ça. Donc alcool m’aide à suivre mon rythme et à me lâcher par rapport aux gens. Je comprends mieux l’anglais, je suis plus social, ouvert. Le vrai Saidou est très réservé et calme. Je suis aussi un peu sentimental. Comme ma musique. J’écoute beaucoup de la variété française comme je t’avais dit.

  • Tu as ton propre style. Je peux te reconnaître facilement.

Chaque DJ a son style. Ma mélodie c’est comme ça. Je suis dans la douceur.

  • Je vois. Surtout la dernière composition sénégalaise « The Beauty Of Senegal Kiz ». Pour moi c’est très beau mais pas très confortable pour danser. Je pensais que l’instrument principal était la guitare par contre.

Non, on appelle ça la cora. C’est comme harpe en France on a la cora. A la base, je l’ai fait pour Midi Station Festival. Ils voulaient que je fasse un morceau exclu pour eux. En même temps, vu que c’est Sénégalais aussi, je me suis dis, vas-y, tiens. Pourquoi ne pas mixer un morceau de chez moi ? Parce que je suis Sénégalais. Et donc, j’ai fait ce morceau là.

  • C’est là que j’ai commencé à m’intéresser au Sénégal. J’écoutais cette chanson et je me suis dit : « Mmm, ça pourrait être intéressant de visiter ce pays un jour ».

Il y a bientôt un festival au Sénégal – Dakar Kizomba Congress ! (https://www.facebook.com/groups/943298679094448/?fref=ts 25-31/10 2017, Dj Saï Saï sera present la) Il y a beaucoup de monde qui vient. Je suis obligé de mixer dans mon pays. Tu peux venir si tu veux. Tu ne vas pas le regretter. Tout est inclut dans le Full Pass : 1000 euro tu as tout – les billets d’avion, l’hôtel. Le manger ce n’est pas cher du tout là-bas.

  • Tu organises ou t’y vas juste pour mixer ?

J’y vais comme Dj, mais je représente aussi le festival vu que je suis Sénégalais.

  • C’est la première fois ?

C’est la première fois. Après j’ai ma famille là-bas.

  • Tes parents habitent au Sénégal ?

Mes parents – oui.

  • Ce n’est pas dangereux pour moi d’y aller toute seule ?

Non, pas du tout. Il y a beaucoup de blancs au Sénégal. Moi où j’habite c’est cité avion, là où il y a l’aéroport. Après tu as les Almadis, coté touristique où il y a beaucoup de blancs. On a aussi cité AirFrance ou on tous les résidents français blancs qui habitent là-bas. C’est chic. Des belles résidences avec des gardiens devant les villas. Là il y a beaucoup de blancs qui travaillent et vivent là-bas. Tu ne risque rien. Moi-même pour eux je suis un blanc. Vu que j’habite en France, je travaille en France. Quand je vais au Sénégal ils le savent que je ne suis pas de là-bas. Par rapport, à mes piercings, mon style, comment je m’habille… ils le savent. Il y a aussi l’accent français. Comment je vais marcher, comment je m’habille – ils vont le voir. Piercings ça n’existe pas là-bas, ils vont le voir.

Dès que j’y vais, ils le voient. L’été dernier j’y étais, j’étais avec mon cousin qui habite là-bas, on marchait et tout le monde se retournait dès qu’ils nous voyaient.

  • Comment les Français voient que tu es Sénégalais ?

Juste avec mes marques ici  (il a souligné aux tempes sur son visage). Quand tu es né là haut, on fait ça pour te purifier. C’est une coutume. Moi et mon grand frère on a ça. C’est comme un tatouage. C’est religieux et c’est une coutume chez nous. Tous les sénégalais qui sont nés là-bas et sont venus en France ou n’importe où après, ils ont ça.

  • Tu as beaucoup de frères ?

On est cinq garçons et une fille.  Moi et mon frère on a, mais les autres ils n’ont pas, parce qu’ils sont nés en France. Mon grand frère travaille à la mairie…

  • Quand ils font cette marque ?

Ils font ça quand t’es un bébé. C’est comme un tatouage qui reste pour toute la vie. C’est une coutume de purification, pour porter de la chance, pour l’avenir, pour tout.

  • Tu as beaucoup de chance !

J’ai travaillé pour, J’ai commencé à mixer quand j’étais jeune, au début je le faisais pour rien du tout, je n’avais pas beaucoup d’argent, j’étais là avec mes potes. J’ai toujours fait tout tout seul d’A à Z, jamais demandé de l’aide.

  • Qu’est-ce qui est le meilleure dans ta vie de DJ ?

Pour moi c’est une vrai passion – passion. C’est comme mon hobby. Cela me fait vivre aussi, mais ça a toujours été ma passion. Il y a beaucoup de Dj qui viennent maintenant et ils ont marre. C’est plus qu’ils veulent profiter – être connu, voyager, faire la fête. A la base être Dj Kizomba tu dois avant être juste un Dj. Il n’y a pas beaucoup de vrais Dj, qui ont travaillé pendant 10-15-20 ans. Moi, j’ai mixé cabo love, zouk, dance hall, house, reggaeton, hip-hop, funk – j’ai tout mixé, tous les styles. J’ai travaillé dans les discothèques où j’avais une salle que je devais occuper de 22 heures à 6 heures du matin. Ça veut dire que je mixe tout seul toute la soirée.

Tandis qu’avec kizomba tu mixe juste 1-2 heures. Pour moi mixer la nuit entière n’est pas un problème. Le problème maintenant avec des nouvelles technologies, même les filles deviennent des Dj, toi demain t’achète un Mac, un contrôleur et tu peux mixer aussi. C’est devenu accessible à tout le monde maintenant. La plupart fait ça par rapport à la mode, voyages etc. 

Ils ne voient que ça en fait, et moi je ne vois pas comme ça. C’est comme ça que tu vois un vrai Dj – sa façon de mixer, comment il voit les clients, etc. Si tout le monde avait cette passion de mixer, ils ont remixé bien avant la kizomba. C’est juste kizomba est arrivé, c’est la mode et tout le monde veux mixer – il y a des filles, voyages, de l’argent, … allez ! Vu que la kizomba est devenue mondiale et il y a des Dj partout, ils voient le flyer – voyage etc. Ils achètent un mac et contrôleur mais connaissent rien en musique, c’est un travail. Il faut connaître, maintenant tu as plein de faux Dj.

  • Est-ce que tu as déjà refusé un travail parce que tu étais fatigué de voyage et tu voulais juste rester à la maison tranquille ?

Jamais. Comme je t’ai déjà dit je suis quelqu’un de solitaire. Je suis tout le temps tout seul chez moi, le fait de voyager, … Tant qu’il y a la télé, l’ordinateur, la musique et une consomme – la PlayStation, c’est bon. Chez moi c’est pareil, je pose mes affaires, je ne fais rien de plus. Mais quand je voyage je rencontre du monde, je vois des gens, j’approfondie mon anglais, je partage ce que je fais. Pour moi c’est important de voyager pour partager ce que je fais. Parce que m’écouter sur Internet c’est bien, mais me voir un vrai c’est mieux.

  • Quels sont tes festivals préférés ?

Oui ! Luxembourg! Bah, déjà c’est celui-là. J’ai mis la T-shirt aujourd’hui.

  • Oui !!! J’ai remarqué ! Bravo !!!!

Luxembourg, pour moi c’est numéro 1 –  Luxembourg International  Kizomba Festival (KZL). O’KIZ je l’adore. C’était magnifique. J’y vais encore cette année. C’est aussi PKC, qui est aussi magnifique. Après, « I’M YOUR DJ », dans le Top5. Pour le moment, c’est tout. Celui qui commence à rentrer gentiment c’est – Universal Kiz. J’ai aimé. Même si on avait un planning bizarre, nous les Dj français parce que les hollandais ils ont pris le dessus. Mais on va dire, en Belgique c’est pas mal aussi.

  • Mais pourquoi Luxembourg est meilleure ? Pour moi c’est comme ça aussi. J’essaie de le comparer objectivement avec les autres, je le trouve super bien.

C’est le meilleur festival pour tous les artistes parce que l’organisation est carrée. L’organisation, les lieux sont parfaits, c’est convivial, malgré que ça soit grand c’est convivial. Mon premier festival c’était dans Novotel Hôtel. Tout se passait dans l’hôtel. Il y avait un bus qui nous ramenait dans une grande salle pour la soirée. Et nous le matin, après le petit déjeuner, jouons au FIFA, parce qu’il y a la PlayStation avec la télé. Les chambres sont des suites ! Chaque 5 secondes on nous demande : « Dj Saï Saï, Ça va ? Tout se passe bien ? Vous voulez si, vous voulez ça ? ». On avait nos loges, on avait tout. C’est le meilleur festival. KZL est le meilleur festival. Cela dépend aussi de la saison – pour l’hiver c’est KZL, pour l’été c’est O’KIZ, pour l’automne – PKC, pour le printemps – le Luxembourg festival, pour l’hiver c’est PKC et pour le jour de l’an et même pour le printemps – I’m jour DJ. Tu as mon Top 4.

  • Passons maintenant à ta liste de musique maintenant. Quand tu vas au festival, tu te prépares toujours à l’avance ou t’improvise à l’avance ?

Je ne fais jamais de playlist.

  • Inspiration ?

Inspiration et moi je me fais à la page sur toutes les musiques. Et après j’ai des exclusivités, j’ai tout. En fait, je vais m’adapter par rapport aux autres DJ. Tout le temps. C’est ce qu’on appelle expérience.

  • Tu viens et tu regardes ce que les autres font avant toi et tu continues à ta façon ? Et tu as toute ta musique toujours avec toi ?

Voilà ! Si l’autre a joué de la Trans, moi je vais jouer de la douceur. Je m’adapte. Je ne sais jamais quelle musique va enchainer après, je réfléchis pendant que je mixe. Il y a un mécanisme, il y a des sonorités dans la musique qui font que quand tu les mets ensemble ça se mélange bien. Quand tu écoutes une mixe complète de chez moi – tu vois que tout se mélange tout seul.

Avec ces mots je termine la conversation, remerciant sans cesse Dj Saï Saï pour son temps et sa volonté de répondre à toutes les questions.