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Last weekend the event of the year occured for the salsa dancers in the capital of the world: the B.I.G. New York Salsa Festival took place! Hosted by Yamuleé Dance Company and because of that even more important for me and my dance family, we are living up to this moment for months. This year it took place in the Hilton Midtown Hotel, just like last one’s edition. Overall it was an amazing weekend and the event is getting bigger every year!

 

Friday morning I was excited to pack my bag and to be a ‘weekend away’ in my own city. With a small group we booked a hotelroom at the Hilton, because having to go back and forth between home and the worshops, shows and parties is almost impossible. At the BIG New York Salsa Festival with the whole Yamuleé family we took Osmar’s and Gaby’s workshops, which was interesting to do for once outside of the everyday studio. I could see he was making the level a little bit more easy than regularly, the sequence was shorter and he took some more time to explain everything. Nevertheless it still went very fast for most people and I could see them getting frustrated or giving up. But this is exactly what I love about the Yamuleé classes: it pushes you to get the most out of the class and people get out of their comfort zone and this way will learn and progress! The BIG New York Salsa Festival is perfect for this.

 

The first night of the congress I was enormously proud to see the Guarikiten de Yamuleé student team do Chango as opening show of the congress. They did such a great job and I’m so happy to see my ladies shine like the stars that they are!

 

This year I only had one show to do at the BIG New York Salsa Festival, as opposed to last time when I did four shows. I can’t deny I was a bit disappointed about that, I would always love to do as many shows as possible. I was happy I got to do my favorite Bajari de Yamuleé show, Ritmo De Mi Cuba, but unfortunately it didn’t go great. Of course we try to see everything as a learning moment so we will make sure this won’t happen again. We keep on working hard and experiences like this only make us stronger 🙂

 

Because I barely performed I had the chance to see a lot of shows, which I really enjoyed. The audience was so supportive and I could really feel the connection between the performers on stage and the crowd. The cherry on top was of course Yamuleé Dance Company doing the classic routine Mambo with some of the old team members. It was so amazing for me to experience these historic salsa moments with my own eyes here live at the BIG New York Salsa Festival. I’m literally living my dreams.

 

 

Then on Monday we closed the BIG New York Salsa Festival with the Yamuleé after party cruise, which was the perfect ending of an amazing weekend. On the ship we saw the beautiful skyline of the city and we got very close to the Statue of Liberty. It was great to hang out with the Yamuleé family this way outside of all the dancing activities.

 

 

All together this was an amazing weekend and I can’t wait for next year!

Did you go to the BIG New York Salsa Festival as well or are you planning on going? I’d love to hear in the comments!