LAII Partners with Albuquerque Latin Dance Festival

August 18, 2014

The UNM Latin American & Iberian Institute (LAII) is pleased to support the 5th Annual Albuquerque Latin Dance Festival (ABQ LDF) taking place from August 21-24, 2014.

As part of this support, the LAII is hosting the only on-campus activity related to the festival. Please join us for a special presentation with renowned dancer Eric "El Cubanito" Freeman. Freeman will speak on "The Evolution of Salsa Throughout the World" on Friday, August 22, 2014, from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. in the LAII Conference Room (801 Yale Blvd NE). For reference, please see the event flyer or join the event on Facebook.

Like the human species, the evolution of salsa dancing is a long and complex story. Many separate dance cultures and communities have formed, developed, and changed over time. Cuba, New York, and the Caribbean Spanish-speaking parts of Latin America contained the original salsa dancing societies. But this virus has now spread around the world, helped largely by modern airline travel, the internet, and the particularly virulent transmission vector known as YouTube. It also controls a large army of salsa devotees, who uncontrollably but knowingly continue to help its further global infection, and has now taken over most of the large population centers on this planet.

In this short 40-minute audio, video and dancing presentation, Freeman will first explore the principal styles of salsa and what distinguishes them from one another in order to safely identify what strain of the virus one is dealing with. Then, we will take a quick trip around the world to explore how each of these strains has infected various population centers from Europe, to Asia and even back to Latin America. Freeman is an internationally recognized salsa instructor and videographer. Based in Colorado, he has taught salsa in the U.S., all over Europe, Latin America, and at the Puerto Rican Salsa Congress. Eric's 15 instructional and demonstrational salsa videos have sold over 20,000 copies in 75 countries worldwide.

This presentation with Freeman on the UNM campus complements a wealth of additional activities happening in the greater Albuquerque community as part of the 5th Annual ABQ LDF, which takes place from August 21-24, 2014. Guanabana Productions, Inc., is the non-profit organization of volunteers who create and promote the Festival. Their primary goal is to develop and celebrate New Mexico's vibrant Latin dance culture through partnerships with local dance schools, dancers, musicians, and other supportive entities within the surrounding communities and beyond. The LAII is proud to be among the festival's supporters in 2014.

The festival features a variety of ticketed workshops and classes are geared toward dancers of all levels. In addition, the festival includes a number of free activities available at no cost to the general public. Please see the ABQ LDF website for complete information.