In my quest to find out who the best leads are in Kizomba, I firstly had to ask what they do that makes them a lady’s first choice.
So I spoke to a few ladies and the recurring ideas are connection, execution, and fun. That’s connection to the music, your partner, and then executing the steps. And fun, well that’s why we dance.
Tarryn said: “You got to have your own style, he has to make a good connection with me and is smooth, and it’s not a situation where he has to think of the next move. The transition into the next move is smooth and most importantly he is fun.”
Now what stands out here is style. The basics are the same, but if you apply your interpretation of the song, you connect with your partner, then that right there is your style. And this lady, like most experienced Kizombies, can feel your intentions. So make it clear. And don’t count the steps. Well, not out loud at least.
Simone said: “I like a guy that makes me comfortable first and if he can see I follow, then spice it up, surprise me.”
This reminds me of that Jamie Foxx song Unpredicatable: ‘Girl get comfortable we gonna do something you never done before.’
So before you try to shine make a lady feel comfortable. BUT first, you need to know if she can follow before you surprise her with a fake, a pause or a quick quick slow step. Connection again is stressed; it’s the foundation of an enjoyable dance.
Delicia said: “There’s nothing worse than a guy doing his own thing and then I’m struggling to keep up because he has not paid attention to my body movement or the music.”
We are taught steps which lead to a sequence and then some guys just dance it, irrespective of the song. The substance of Kizomba is feeling the music, knowing your partner’s abilities and then confidently leading her.
Gill said: “Suggesting with your body so that she can take up the cue. The minute you force anything be it by pushing or pulling or tugging or yanking that’s when it’s not a conversation anymore, it’s a competition.”
A Kizomba conversation, I dig this. I mean here I am faking to the right and she fakes to her right? That’s so wrong.
I’m sure you will agree that it just looks (and feels) awesome when two people are moving in unison, but if the lead wants to outdo his follower it just seems awkward. There are no medals for pulling off a move a minute; the ultimate prize is a genuine smile and a reference to her friends.
And trust me, references are doing the rounds.
I was taught from day one that the man leads gently because Kizomba is a whisper. Using your strength to complete a movement is just rude, and if you can use the subtlest of body gestures to lead your lady then congrats.
In my experience repetition is key to dancing a seamless Kizomba, knowing a few songs helps too, and of course enjoying the music so much that your partner feels it too. Bringing that enjoyment is essential or else what’s the use?
As for the best Kizomba leads, only I will know who the ladies said their best are, and who are in the top 10.
*Jacob Zuma Laughs*
It’s not a competition gentleman; so let’s indulge the ladies with a whisper.