“Tango is subtlety, elegance and emotion”, words of wisdom of my teacher Blas Catrenau. In these workshops we work on: Posture, Walking, Embrace, and Musicality.
When I was prepared enough and brave enough to start going to milongas in Buenos Aires, often my eyes would be directed to a milonguero in the room whose way of moving was so particularly effortless, spontaneous, witty in one moment and so deep and thoughtful in the next moment, that I couldn’t avoid approaching him, respectfully, and asking him if he taught and/or would teach me to dance Tango. The answer I always got from these gentlemen was in its essence the same: “I can only teach you the posture and to walk, then it’s up to you to listen to the music, and if you have emotions inside yourself, then, you will dance“.
To know about the most efficient posture necessary for dancing Tango in particular, dancing in general, but also for the benefit of your whole life, is research of our own posture before starting to dance, the forces that shape how the body stands upright when resting, when getting ready for the pursuit of a goal, when presenting ourselves to others and the way we enjoy the mere fact of being alive. Then, exposing the body to what challenges it -although we desire it- to find out what needs to be changed to respond most efficiently to achieve our goals of making a challenge become something familiar to us, discovering the habits that shape our perceptions, voluntary actions and involuntary reactions; being creative in finding exercises that help us reshape our habits, with the aim of obtaining habits that serve us better. This is a never-ending process that is at the core of the attitude of a dancer, a milonguera or milonguero.
Our human walk defines us. It is rooted in our upright posture, carrying this posture throughout the surface of Earth. Nature, evolution or the Divine, or all of those, gifted us with a very efficient walking apparatus, that saves energy to be used by our brains, protects the brain from being damaged by mechanical shocks, and elevates our gaze to be aware of our surroundings. As a consequence of this, we became the technologically gifted creature that modifies the world to make our own existence even more efficient, for example: developing smooth surfaces, like dance floors.Read more, click here.
Listening to music requires a sensitivity that can be taught, trained, developed and improved, in the same manner that a musician studies and trains. A dancer is a musician, whose instrument is her/his body. A milonguera/o is a Tango musician who plays the whole couple as a musical instrument. Read more, click here.
Every exercise to improve our technique, our efficiency, elegance, is nothing more or less than to make us more sensitive and more precise in how we perceive and manifest our emotions. It is not possible to dance without our emotions. Furthermore, we, human beings, do not exist if we remove our emotions. Remove all emotions from yourself and what is left is not a “rational being” but “nothing”. “Rationality” is only an explanation, a justification of our procedures, happening after the fact. In “the moment” you are not calculating, you are feeling, even the measurements that you take. You assess these measurements emotionally-qualitatively. Often meditators refer to the train of thoughts previous to the clearing of the mind, but emotions are also running through those train tracks. Dancing requires the discipline of letting emotions come and go, as the thought trains that prepare the mind for its clearance. Dancing provides you, eventually, with emotional clarity; although to reach that you need to learn to accept confusion.
In these workshops we will assess these four topics through exercises, repetition, practice and risk into creation.
I was born in Argentina. Through my family and the community that saw my upbringing, I have been intimately involved with the culture of Tango all my life, and have been an Argentine Tango dance performer, choreographer and instructor for over 30 years. I profoundly love Tango dancing, music, and culture, particularly that of the Golden Era. I am a milonguero.