Cuban Salsa: Dile Que Sí
Dile Que Sí (say yes to her) is the twin sister to Dile Que No (say no to her). As a move Dile Que Sí is a handheld Vacilala. The Follow is lead forward on one, she turns on 1-2-3 in order for the Lead to bring her into closed position on 5-6-7. That is what the name means: bring her in, say yes to her.
Video 1 is from Mexican “Salsafición”, 2017. Except that it takes a while to get used to the funny personal style of Amando, they make many great and technically innovative videos. Anahí always steps the most perfect Vacilala. She only needs to unlearn the back rocking in Dile Que No to become a role model.
I like the way Amando breaks the moves down in their many videos, and that he carefully names the different parts of a move. Very useful. All instructors should do that. But I sometimes disagree with the terms he use.
In the Dile Que Sí video, Amando calls the first part, for “Dile Que Sí”, just another name for the Vacilala turn on 1-2-3. So why not call it a Vacilala turn to make things easier? The 5-6-7 of Vacilala bringing the Follow into closed position, Amando calls “Sacala” of all things? This must be a typo, that should be corrected.
Video 2 is from “Pepe Puerto Vs Rueda Cubana”, Seville, Spain, 2016. Pepe has uploaded more videos of moves than probably anybody else, and his personal style fits him well. In the following video, Pete and Maribel show an example of how one can use the Dile Que Sí move in social dancing. We have of cause many variations for what to do, when the Follow is brought in.
The Dile Que Sí move is just a handheld Vacilala with the purpose of bringing the Follow into closed position on 5-6-7.
We have many other moves that can be used to do the same, even an Enchufla will do.
But it is important that we only call the handheld Vacilala for Dile Que Sí, giving us at least one Rueda call to get us into closed position, understood all over the world.
How not to use the term “Dile Que Sí”
In the videos from Mexican “Salsafición, we have already seen one example. Amando constantly uses the Dile Que Sí term when breaking down moves. My advise is to use the Vacilala term instead. In the next Video 3, showing a great move called Caracol, the move even starts with a two handed Vacilala turn. Just call it that. Note that Anahí steps forward on one, using Vacilala steps for the first count of eight.
In Video 4, a “74” variation, from Mexican “Salsafición”, we have two Vacilala turns, the first as start of Setenta. Next, the Lead forces the Follow to duck under his right arm, and the Follow is twisted around, but it is still a Vacilala turn, so why not call it that?
Dile Que Sí confusion
Doing research for this tutorial, I stumbled upon many videos showing all sorts of moves called Dile Que Sí. Some of them turned out to be Guapea or Abajo. Most of the “alternative” moves only have one thing in common: they are just a way to get into closed position, to “say yes to her”. Like using Prima or Enchufla or a Vuelta right turn borrowed from X-body Salsa.
The Dile Que Sí move has for a long time been taken for granted without using the name explicitly, to the extent that many dancers have forgotten what Dile Que Sí really is. Dile Que Sí is missing from many video collections of moves. E.g.: It is not mentioned in the “Salsa Steps” App, a collection of more than 500 Cuban Salsa moves.
We have the Dile Que Sí move, and we have Dile Que Sí Steps. The two have nothing in common. I will deal with Dile Que Si Steps in a separate tutorial.
Nice article, this moves confused me for a while. I personally think http://www.salsayo.com has a better account for Dile Que Si though. Not as detailed but matching my experience in Cuba.
Thanks for you comment, and I like that you give critical and useful feedback.
“Salsayo” and I agree that Dile Que Sí is an overloaded term that has and is being used for all sorts of moves. Most of the moves have the meaning “Say yes to her”, “bring her in”, but we have many different options for doing that. By the way, I don’t like that “Salsayo” translates Dile Que Sí to “Say yes to him”!!! “Le” in “Dile” both means she and he, but the only proper way to translate it in a Cuban Salsa context is “Say yes to her”!
If we have very many “Say yes to her” moves, and if we would like to standardise things a little, which one should we go for? The move showed at “Salsayo” is certainly a good candidate, I often use that move, and in Copenhagen, where I live, I have even heard one of the good local instructors, using the Dile Que Sí term for exactly that move.
But in most Rueda de Casinos I have attended, the handheld Vacilala version, my candidate, is much more common, and my research from the analysis of hundreds of YouTube videos, made me decide that the handheld Vacilala version deserves the name, it is by far the most common figure with that name.
But calling the “Salsayo” figure for Dile Que Sí is ok. This gives me an idea. One day I will make a tutorial about all the good Dile Que Sí figures, all the “bring her in” figures, and I will name them version #1, #2, #3, etc.
By the way, if you are not aware of it:
I have made two Masterclass Videos, explaining Dile Que Sí, the figure, and the even more exiting Dile Que Sí, the steps.