Greetings from El Rey Leon

One of the first articles I wrote for this site, was about an event I attended in Birmingham, organised by El Rey Leon. This event opened my eyes to what Salsa could be about and was the first time that I saw people like Robert Charlemagne and Leon Rose dance. Just before Christmas, I received an e-mail from El Rey Leon, letting me know what he's been up to since then. With his permission, I've included it here.
From:  El Rey Leon
Date:  Wednesday, 19th December 2001
Subject:  Thanks from El Rey Leon

Hi Ian

IMAGE Can you imagine how taken back I was When I saw your history of how it all begun for you? It was so nice to see someone remember me and of course the unique event controversially named Midland 'Salsa Explosion', an event which I think changed the lives of many. Well I now reside in St. Lucia, the home land of my parents. I work here as an engineer but in my spare time I also survey, design and draw house plans, supervise house construction and of course I teach Salsa.

Salsa Fiesta Lucia is the group name and I teach, perform and of course have fun doing it. Salsa is new to St. Lucia but they love it and recently Latino bands have been included into our annual Jazz Festival. You will always find me every Wednesday evening from 9:00pm at a local hot spot called Shamrock pub for our Latino night, an event which I created 2 years ago and is now very well established.

Please give a mention to some of my friends in Birmingham whom contributed to that first ever big event in 1998 and may well still be doing salsa now, namely: Sonia Barnett, Maureen Cadogan, Hach, Hopeton, Perry Antoine, Ann-Marie Roberts to name but a few.

Regards to my first teachers Mauricio, Zane and Edlin and also Nelson Batista, Elder Sanchez, and Big Robert Charlemagne my mentor.

I hear Leon Rose is doing big things now do you know that event was the first time he ever performed?

You also mentioned Alison, well she is the one who brought your web page to my attention and she is doing fine residing a couple of Islands to the south of me in 'Grenada' and she too is teaching salsa in her spare time. We recently came together in St. Vincent when she joined me for a couple of days while I was teaching a group of 50 students or so on a 2 week course. Alison is kneeling on the right at the end. I'm somewhere in the middle.

Thank you again Ian for the mention and the memory. Keep in touch and Good health and prosperity to you all.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

 Len (El Rey) Leon