Jorge Torres reprises some of the elements which he taught in a workshop on small off axis movements. Dance Manhattan Dance Studios, New York City, Saturday February 11, 2012.
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Q: One of the biggest parts of dance etiquette is called cabeceo. Cabeceo comes from the word cabeza which means head. A cabecero is just as you would say hello to somebody that’s passing by you have a little something like this. This is an invitation when we look at each other and say it’s an invitation, let’s dance. And then she would come. This generally happens across the dance floor. This avoids the awkward when you ask someone to dance through word. So you don’t have to walk all the way, ask the person, and maybe everyone be rejected. Instead, you look from afar and if she. . . right now, she told me no. She didn’t want to dance with me. That’s what she did. But if I look at her, she nods then I will then proceed to ask her for a dance. Another part off dance etiquette is wearing deodorant.
A: Or having some breath mints and not going out to the pizzeria and having a lot of garlic and coming to your partner and breathing into his face. It’s not really polite. Keep that in mind.
Q: Also, the way to say that you would not like to dance with someone is just say thank you. And then another party is escorting your partner. You don’t necessarily have to take your partner and escort them with hand, but it’s very nice to walk off with your partner and off the dance floor and then you can both part off after that. It’s a gentle thing to do. When you’re dancing in a couple you never have a cut-in. So if Anna is dancing with Capito I will not ask for a dance then. I will wait until the tanda is finished and then I will try to gain her eye to ask for something. Now, cabeceo is not necessarily used everywhere in the world. It is recommended to do, but from time to time, if you know people you can just say, hey, would you like to dance? It’s a more casual thing.