World renown Italian artist and instructor Francesco Scalvenzi chats with Vanessa Wang about beautiful Italy, his dancing ambitions, Grupo Alafia and why he likes to come to the COLADA event in Bangkok.
Vanessa: It is great to be in Italy! There is so much history here… Which part of Italy are you from originally?
Francesco: Benvenuti nel nostro bel paese! We are from Parma, a small nice city in the north, world wide famous for the amazing food and music opera!
Vanessa: Francesco, you and Grupo Alafia have a great track-record, but how did you begin your Dancer career? How did you start Grupo Alafia?
Francesco: I started dancing 16 years ago, but I founded the Grupo in 2008 with my friend Marcello. Everything started when he asked me to create a choreo for him and his exgirlfriend…and my answer was: ” As I am planning to build my own group…why don’t we start it together…I have some ideas!”
Vanessa: Tell me about your dance work in Italy or Europe?
Francesco: We started working only in italy at the beginning, then after our “big bang” in NY 2010 we started travelling in Europe and step by step …all around the world
Vanessa: Of all your successes, which one is your favourite?
Francesco: If you talk about our routines …my favourite one is called ATIPICO, it was my second choreo. But the real big succes was about…creating this team of friends!
Vanessa: You’ve been to Asia, what are your thoughts about that region?
Francesco: I really love Asia! People there litterally make you feel their love for what you do, they want to learn so much and enjoy the pleasure to dance with you….something that in Italy people have lost a little bit…
Vanessa: Lately Grupo Alafia has been performing quite a bit. What is your next move?
Francesco: … Don’t stop it! There is still a lot of places in the world I’ve never been!
Vanessa: You’ve been touring all over the world. Is there some place you still want to conquer? Why?
Francesco: I’d like to travel everywhere, this is one of the reasons why I created my own group
Vanessa: The COLADA Latin Dance Congress will be in Bangkok. Grupo Alafia will be is a leading artist group at this Congress and you will conduct several workshops and performances. What can the event fans expect to see or experience from you?
Francesco: We are more excited than you! So we will come with all our energy, and I want to enjoy Thailand and all his bailarinas!
Vanessa: Several event fans have already asked the question: Will you be available for social dancing during the event?
Francesco: I’m smiling because…there is no need to even ask about this… We do this job cause we love to do it, we like dancing with the people, and we are so lucky to feel that people wish to dance with us! So….yes we want to have fun all night long!
Vanessa: You are very dynamic. What is your next project?
Francesco: We always create new choreos, and we run collaboration projects with some artist that we respect soo much. We also have our international chireographic project, and we always like to create new Alafia Lucumí teams all around the world! Then 2018 will be the 10th anniversary of Grupo Alafia….so maybe we will plan some surprise!….
Vanessa: Finally, a tip for the new Latin Dancers?
Francesco: Remember that Salsa is not a workout, is not a sport, is not just a way to meet people…. Is a culture, is an art! So enjoy all the different sides of this art…listening to the music , singing it if you can… Studying the story behind this music, and remember that the music was born before the stupid question “in which stile should I dance this salsa?” …. Dance the way you want and how you want… Stop judging and start feeling it! Enjoy! …this will make you a real Bailador, more than a stupid championship title.
Vanessa: Thank you very much for the interview. COLADA is at your service and can’t wait to have you all in Bangkok!