SALSA DANCE AS IT DEMONSTRATES NONVERBAL DISCOURSE .
Salsa is a dance that is deeply rooted in the Latin culture and expressed physically in its movements and one's individual take on the dance. This type of dance, more than most others, can be seen as a nonverbal form of discourse through which each dancer must communicate with his or her partner without words but through his or her movements, actions, and facial expressions. According to Cynthia Harper, UCLA Salsa instructor, contemporary dance as seen on the dance floor can also be viewed as an "evolution of emotion, movement, and technique expressed on the dance floor." (Interview 11/10/03) These three aspects, combined together, need to be translated into words and verbal discourse. The lead needs to communicate to the follow and in turn the follow needs to respond to the lead. Through their body language, dancers communicate to each other in a way that allows not only other dancers but also the audience to observe and interpret each gesture on the dance floor as a signal of communication. .
Dancers use their bodies to communicate with each other, using their hands and eyes in place of their mouths. Since dancers don't have a chance to speak to each other while they are dancing they have to communicate with each other through other means. Their facial expressions, hand movements and gestures become their nonverbal forms of discourse. At the dance clubs we noticed communication between dancers through their eyes. .
The couple had their eyes focused on each other at all times not looking away for even a second. Their eyes were serious and their brows were wrinkled with concentration. Right before a certain sequence of steps that were about to take place the dancers would exchange looks. (field notes 11/04/03) .
The woman would not look away from her partner and looked as though she was responding to his facial expressions. She would study his actions waiting for and anticipating his next move.