Watch the first video of our new “We Are Masacote” 2013 Campaign. Subscribe to Our Youtube Channel to view one new Video a week from our students as they each tell in their own words how Masacote Entertainment has changed their lives.
Read transcript below of Darryl’s own words….
“We are Masacote” — Meet Masacote Student Darryl
Darryl: “…My name is Darryl…I am originally from Syracuse, NY. I’m a Boston transplant, so I came here for School and never left and now call Boston home.”
How did you get started with Salsa?
Darryl: “I originally became interested in Salsa because it was, I’ll call it, my 3rd genre and didn’t really know…anything about it. So I had already learned how to merengue, thought I knew how to Bachata, and…and Salsa was something that was new…It was something that I hadn’t mastered, and I wanted to know.”
What led you to Masacote?
Darryl: “I came to Masacote from another school…and I became interested in coming to Masacote because I saw a lot of really great dancers, people that I thought were really great dancers, and…I wanted to know what their special sauce was. I said, you know, I… I have a saying, it, it goes, you know, “Brother, your Kung-Fu is better than mine,” and I found that, that my.. you know it’s from the Saturday morning Kung-Fu movies, but it was something that really….it, it was, it typified my experience out at, you know, clubs, and at practices, practicas. There were people who were really good dancers, and when I asked them, you know, where they learned…almost to a person they told me that they were Masacote students. So…
And I was at another school, and I really didn’t feel as though I was getting the fundamentals. I thought I was…I felt as though I was learning patterns rather than technique, and…I wanted to learn technique.
That’s, That’s only part of what has kept me here…I think that what has really kept me here has been the feeling of, or the sense of family, that I’ve developed…you know, as a member of the school…as a student. I felt more…I don’t know…I felt more…more like a member of a family rather than just a student. I felt, you know, not only that, that…the, the instructors cared, and that, you know, that Ana & Joel cared, but…also that, you know, my fellow students cared. And we care about one another. We’re very supportive of one another…When we go out dancing, we go out as a family, you know, some more than, you know, others, and…you know, we need to do more of it, but, you know, its, it’s a really good feeling. It’s a really good feeling. It’s more than just a school.
There is a dedication to craft amongst the instructors. Meaning…you know…Ana, Joel…Aaron, you know, everyone who teaches here loves to dance. They love salsa. They love their craft. They absolutely love what they’re doing, and they want to impart that. You know, they want to share it with you…That’s one thing, and, you know, that might not make the school itself unique, but I think, you know, I, I really connect with people who love what they’re doing and who love to, to dance. I love to dance…I, I’m constantly, you know, I constantly want to improve. I’m, I’m a little bit of a perfectionist, and I think there’s some members of the company that are also perfectionists (laughing)..So maybe that’s why, maybe that’s why I click well with them…so that’s, that’s unique.
I…I’ve…I’ve formed a bond with…with the folks here, so..”
How has Masacote transformed your life?
Darryl: “It’s given me a lifelong…Something that I feel I’ll carry lifelong with me…Which is, you know, a love for Salsa, and more so, more so a love for Salsa music, for Latin music…than I’d had before. An appreciation of Latin Music. An appreciation of, of, you know, musicality that I, I didn’t have. I mean, I, I consider myself to be a, a very…musical person or very…I consider myself to be a good natural dancer but I didn’t really understand the music very well…or as well as I do now…It’s given me a lifelong hobby, you know, something that I will carry with me for life, and something that I can do anywhere, and connect with, you know, millions of people around the world doing..and have done. You know, I’ve been to congresses from PR to NY to CT to Florida…and..it’s, You know, I’ve just walked right in and immediately I have a bond with this, this community of dancers. And, and that’s, that to me is amazing so it’s given me something that I, you know, I, I will value for the rest of my life, and that’s being able to connect with dancers, you know, from all walks of life from anywhere in the world.”
Tell us about a unique experience you’ve had in Salsa.
Darryl: “Well…There’s some nights when you’re feeling it, and…there’s some times when you’re feeling it. And, I, I really felt that at the PR congress, I had…I got into a groove. I got into a groove. People, partners…women, were, were impressed with the, the, the enjoyment that I had for the music, and…and I think that came through, and I think also that I wasn’t, you know, and you know, you might say ‘Oh My Goodness, or Not you’, but, you know, some of my instructors might say, ‘Well, you know, you weren’t being technical enough’, but it was, it was, I was, I was in the flow. I was in the music. I was just feeling it, and that came through. My love of the music came through. My love of the dance came through, and..and my partners appreciated it, and..you know, we both, all, you know…I had a good time with a lot of my partners, so…It came through.
And that, those are the times when I love, I absolutely love dancing. There are other times when, you know, I’m trying to get a combination, and it’s hard, and it’s, you know, harder for me than it is for some of my classmates. I might not love dance as much at those, at those points, but there are nights when you feel it, and…and you feel good, and PR was a, a great congress, so…I felt it.”
Any advice for beginners?
Darryl: “It’s worth the work…You know, Masacote is a…You know, there’s a work ethic involved here, but the work pays off. So, you know, you, when you come into this school and you are..you know, when you , when you really invest the time and, and the effort…you gain something that you can’t, you know, that can’t be taken away, and it’s a confidence. It’s something that you take to the dance floor, that you can take to any club…or any, you know, any venue, any congress, and be confident that, you know, you can dance, you know. If you’ve been through, you know, Level 1, Level 2, If you’ve been to Masacote and you’ve put in the time, you can feel confident that, that you can dance. I, I remember talking to one of…not one of my contemporaries, but someone who joined the school after me, and…and having her say ‘Oh, well you know, I’m…you know, I’m a little bit scared or nervous to dance when I go out’, and I told her, I said ‘You know, the one thing you have to remember is, and the one thing I tell myself, you know, if I’m feeling a little, you know, out of sorts, I tell myself…
‘I am Masacote. You know, I have been through, you know, the, the training. I mean, I have, I’ve put in the effort so there’s no reason for me to be nervous when I, when I’m out dancing. I’ve put in the effort.’
So…Put in the time. It’s well worth it…It’s not easy, you know…At times…Some things will come easier to you than others. Don’t compare yourself to others. Try, (laughing) try not to compare yourself to others. It’s hard…There’s some great dancers here. There’s some people unlike me who have…you know, who are, I should say, that have more time to devote to dance than I do. So, you know, it’s important for me and for beginners not to compare themselves to others, to have fun…with what they’re doing and where they are…not to be so level-centric.
You know…You know, you’re…It’s a journey, and…you know, no matter how fast or slow you get there, you will get there…if you put in the time…so…yeah.”