Cuban Salsa: Dile Que No Mentira

Very often when doing Dile Que No, the Lead wants to lead the Follow around him behind his back doing Rodeo Inverso type of figures like the Bayamo family of moves and the Setenta y Cinco family of moves, or just leading her around using Paseala moves. This is impossible using DQN because if both the Lead and the Follow walks forward counter clockwise on “5-6-7” on the Partner Circle, the Follow will never get around the Lead’s back.

In the halfway position, the Lead must stop up and walk forward again clockwise in order for the Follow to slip around his back. This is Dile Que No Mentira.

DQN Mentira

DQN Mentira is a basic figure of one count of eight used by many Leads in every social dance but very few dancers have a name for it. Some call it “Dile Que Sí” steps. The Leads mostly use it without really knowing what they are doing, and they typically use random, improvised, homegrown steps.

Mentira means “Lie” and has several meanings as a Cuban Salsa dance term. In Rueda de Casino, the Rueda Caller can start a figure but to tease both the Lead and the Follow, “Mentira” is called almost immediately to undo or cancel the move in the middle of it. In social dancing the Lead can use certain “Mentira” variations of well-known figures to tease the Follow. As a name, DQN Mentira makes a lot of sense because the move works exactly like the traditional “fun” moves except that it isn’t for fun.

DQN Mentira starts like DQN on the Partner Circle. The Lead steps half a step forward on “1” and back on “2” and “3” to the halfway position. The Lead then acts as if he “regrets” it, as if he has changed his mind, and steps forward again clockwise: but first one more small step back on “5”, or the right foot is hooked behind the left foot (Entrada), and then forward on “6” and “7”. The Lead so to speak cancels the DQN and back tracks it from the halfway position.

Rodeo Inverso with DQN Mentira

Video Clip #1 is from a video made by “DC Casineros”, featuring Amanda Gills and Adrian Valdivida, Washington DC, USA, 2014. Adrian demonstrates Rodeo Inverso four times using “Dile Que Sí” steps, his name for Dile Que No Mentira. Note that the first two times he simply takes a small back-step on “5” and walks forward clockwise on “6-7”, the two last times he “hooks behind” on “5” (Entrada) and walks forward on “6-7”. Two variations of the same “Mentira”.

Original “DC Casineros” video on YouTube

Video Clip #2 is from “www.bailarcasino.pl”, Posnań, Poland, 2014, featuring Piotr Agassi and Agata, presenting Rodeo Inverso with DQN Mentira and “hook behind” on “5” (Entrada). In this video clip DQN Mentira is followed by DQN, a very common combination.

Original Piotr Agassi video on YouTube

Bayamo with DQN Mentira

Video Clip #3 is from a video made by “DC Casineros”, featuring Amanda Gills and Adrian Valdivida, Washington DC, USA, 2014. They demonstrate Bayamo using DQN Mentira in order for the Follow to be able to walk around the Lead. Also for the Bayamo family of moves, DQN Mentira is followed by DQN

Original “DC Casineros” video on YouTube

Video #4 is from “dancedifferent”, Prague, Czech Republic, 2017. These lovely people are always inspiring to watch. This Lead uses Dile Que No Mentira probably without knowing it. He starts DQN but in the halfway position he regrets his steps and steps forward again clockwise in order for the Follow to slip behind his back walking counter clockwise.

Same “dancedifferent” video on YouTube

Setenta y Cinco with DQN Mentira

Setenta y Cinco is one of my favourite Setenta moves because of all the counter-clockwise action. The Lead brings the Follow all around him using two DQNs, first DQN Mentira, next DQN. Video Clip #5 is from a “Salsagaia” video, Firenze, Italy, 2014, with Christiana and Elena as instructors. The video clip only shows the midsection of “75”, starting from the Gancho. We see a two handed Rodeo Inverso made possible with DQN Mentira and then DQN.

Original “Salsagaia” video on YouTube

Paseala with DQN Mentira

Paseala (walk her) is both the name for a couple of classic Rueda moves bringing the Follow counter clockwise around the Lead, and for a set of steps I consider to be the basic steps of Cuban Salsa. In this section we look at the basic Pasea or Paseala move.

Video Clip #6 is from a video made by “DC Casineros”, featuring Amanda Gills and Adrian Valdivida, Washington DC, USA, 2014. Enchufla, Paseala, Exhibela, Paseala, Exhibela, DQN, using DQN Mentira for Paseala.

Original “DC Casineros” video on YouTube

DQN Mentira con Coca-Cola

DQN Mentira can also be used to make more combinations of DQN and Coca-Cola possible. DQN con Coca-Cola turns the Follow behind the lead to the left. Why not give the Follow a Coca-Cola turn on the arch in front of the Lead and continue with Rodeo behind the back of the Lead to the right or turning the Follow into Caida position (DQN start position)? This can not be done with DQN but DQN Mentira makes these Coca-Cola combinations possible.

Video Clip #7 is from the online teaching material of “MCC 2.0”, Routine #8, featuring Yoel Marrero and Akiko Meguro. Yoel Marrero calls DQN Mentira for “Dile Que Sí” steps. I think that DQN Mentira is a much better name.

DQN Mentira to start a Paseo walk

DQN Mentira is also a very elegant way to break out of the Partner Circle and go for a walk, e.g. a Paseo walk. There are of cause endless of ways to break out of the Partner Circle and go for a walk, just do it, but DQN Mentira is one of the better ones.

DQN Continuado Mentira

In another tutorial, Cuban Salsa: Dile Que No Continuado, we saw how to do DQN when the left turning motion on the partner circle has already started, e.g. when a DQN follows another DQN. The “Continuado” DQN also has its “Mentira” version. But for DQN Continuado Mentira the Lead doesn’t backtrack the first part of DQN Continuado but simply use the same “clockwise again” steps as in DQN Mentira.

Here is one application of DQN Continuado Mentira: DQN con Coca-Cola followed by one more Coca-Cola on “1-2-3”. For that “1-2-3” we use the first half of DQN Continuado. We can then finish with the last half of DQN Continuado or the Lead can turn DQN Continuado into DQN Continuado Mentira and walk clockwise again.

Dile Que Sí steps

DQN Mentira is my proposal for an easy to understand name that explains itself. The only other name, I have heard for DQN Mentira is “Dile Que Sí” steps”, a name coined by Yoel Marrero and used by some MCC inspired dancers.

But Dile Que Sí is a confusing name because it is a common nickname for almost any move that brings the Follow from open to closed position.

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