The Cloudy Dancer

22 Aug

“The wind blows gently and the cloud follows,
one giving its force
one giving its form
together, united, as one,
The wind blows gently and the cloud follows.”

A dance with a “Cloudy Dancer” is nothing short of magical!

For me, it’s the ultimate dance. A dance where you barely feel your partner while at the same time feeling everything! The guide is light as is the contact between each dancer but a light touch is all that’s needed. Just enough for the idea, the intention to be understood between each other.

It doesn’t have to be the most complicated dance ever, nor the most spectacular. What’s important is that everything just works; no tugs, no false leads, no off timing… pure dance magic!

I first started using the term “cloudy dancer” to describe some wonderful salseras I had the pleasure of dancing with when I moved to Dublin. Dancing with a cloudy dancer is just how it sounds. Their touch you barely feel yet they respond to your lightest lead with a precision that astounds me!

Clearly, the name I went with isn’t that original, nor does it sound particularly catchy but it describes exactly what I feel when I dance with a “Cloudy Dancer”. Like a wisp of vapor; I’m aware of her presence only by the lightest of sensations on my fingertips.

What’s even more special about them is that they’re not all that common but, by God, once you dance with one you’ll thank the heavens for their existence.

As soon as the music plays and you both start dancing you’ll feel it. The connection without resistance, the flow without force, the magic. You won’t be able to hide the smile on your face and you won’t want to. Your confidence will skyrocket, inexplicably knowing that whatever you do will just work… and work beautifully at that. Adrenaline will flow and hearts will race and when the music comes to an end you’ll want to embrace her… or kiss her… but you won’t.

You’ll thank her and walk away, your feet as light as her touch when you danced, feeling a euphoria which only comes from the near perfect orchestration of two individuals moving as one. At this stage you won’t mind going home. It’s the type of dance that fulfills your whole night, the type of dance you can retire on.

At least that’s how it feels for me!

I also know (although I don’t know why) that I’ve barely scratched the surface of what it’s like to dance with a cloudy dancer. My salsa still leaves a huge amount of room for improvement and as I get better I know that I’m going to feel the dance like I’ve never felt it before… and I can’t wait.

This post hasn’t really offered anything in the line of advice but if anything I hope it motivates you go out and dance with more people in the hopes that you’ll get to experience a dance like that for yourself, that will fill you with a reinvigorated love for salsa or bachata or whatever. It really is something very special.

Thank you, Cloudy Dancer!

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12 Responses to “The Cloudy Dancer”

  1. DAO August 22, 2012 at 5:52 pm #

    De acuerdo, son pocos pero cuando encuentras una pareja así… no quieres dejar de bailar con ella

  2. superrninaa August 22, 2012 at 8:26 pm #

    Reblogged this on ~Wonderland~.

  3. Chilly August 24, 2012 at 6:00 am #

    Awesome post. I remember the first dance I ever had with a cloudy dancer, MAGICAL. I attend congresses each year in the hopes of finding one such dance each and every night and the feeling is just as you said: ” It’s the type of dance that fulfills your whole night, the type of dance you can retire on”. Gonna reblog this post next week. Its just that damn Good!


  1. The Cloudy Dancer from the Dancing Irish Man | Chillys Blog - August 30, 2012

    […] fellow blogger ( The Dancing Irish Man ) recently wrote a blog called The Cloudy Dancer. In his words – “A dance with a “Cloudy Dancer” is nothing short of […]

  2. Why Social dancers are killing Salsa | The Dancing Irishman - April 22, 2014

    […] takes us away from the safety of mediocrity and down the hard path to greatness. More of us need to taste what it’s like to dance with a cloudy dancer to fuel our desire for greater […]

  3. Better Grip, Better Salsa! | Latin Dance Community - October 13, 2014

    […] Leave your thumbs out of the equation & don’t grab: pretty self explanatory I think, there are very few situations that call for a firm “grip” in salsa and generally it’s initiated by the lead (who should know better than to use it otherwise). Keep your connection with the lead light and for the love of God, don’t clamp down on their hands with your thumbs. If a guy did it to you I’d say “dig your nails in” to get him to release you… don’t do it yourself. A salsa connection should be light, like a cloudy dancer. […]

  4. What Women Want… from a dance! (Tips to make you a better lead) | The Dancing Irishman - February 10, 2015

    […] Have a clear but NOT forceful lead You do not need to tear off a woman’s arms to get her to follow you. A good lead should be able to indicate clearly and painlessly which way you would like your partner to go. Timid leads (due to being afraid to touch your partner) and (sometimes) leading by the hips or the stomach are no good either. Also, don’t forget that if you use your thumbs to clamp down on your partners hands, she has the right to dig her nails into you in return. If you want an idea of what a good lead feels like, check out my article on the Cloudy Dancer. […]

  5. Dancing is just like Sex (and not in a good way!) | The Dancing Irishman - May 28, 2015

    […] It happens. It’s not the end of the world. Just accept it and stop worrying about it. It doesn’t mean you have to stop dancing with that person. Just stop being so hard on yourself because it’s not “great”. Not everyone you dance with will be your Cloudy Dancer. […]

  6. Beautiful Gorgeous Feminine Vortex | The Dancing Irishman - July 28, 2015

    […] that good I once wrote an article called “The Cloudy Dancer” that spoke more of the technical side of dancing with a wonderful dancer like a Type 3. However, in […]

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