(14 February 1885 – 7 February 1942)
His story is part of the tango mythology, a legend, today very few who had witnessed his life or his art remain. His image was captured on the film Tango, premiered in 1933, where he can be seen with his partner Carmencita Calderón, just a girl under 20 years old.
He looked like as if he were not very smart from waist downwards, with a well upright body, but with too much feet movement, possibly due to the film maker´s instructions, to attract people’s attention.
His nickname remained for our everyday history as his definitive first and last names: El Cachafaz.
According to the lunfardo dictionary by Adolfo Enrique Rodríguez, cachafaz, means: rascal, shameless, insolent, rogue, idler.
It is possible he had been and it is possible he had not, his face inspired doubts. Combed a la gomina (with a sticky paste), the hair tightly pulled backwards, Indian-like features and pock-marked, he always appeared with a serious countenance on pictures and on movies. Read more.
argentine tango, Buenos Aires, dance, history, milonguero, teaching
Myriam Pincen con Blas Catrenau dancing at “El Maipú Milonga”, January 2018
“My classes aim to instruct and encourage the dance of Tango Salón Tradicional Argentino, a knowledge that I have acquired over more than 30 years of study with various teachers such as: Miguel Gutierrez, Eduardo Arquimbau, Mingo Pugliese, Pepito Avellaneda, J.C. Copez among others, with whom I not only learned to dance but also to teach dance, scene and choreography.
In my classes we work everything you need to dance tango on a dance floor: posture, musicality, balance, cadence, styles, different orchestras, lead and follow, adornments, codes, floor craft, etc.
The final goal is that all can access to enjoy a good tango dance and also to transcend our Buenos Aires’ culture for the next generations.”
He started dancing tango in his early youth among other young men at the practice studio of Crisol and Verné. Later he attended several carnival balls organized at local clubs such as San Lorenzo de Almagro.
Since then he never stopped dancing and attending the most important clubs of his time, like Club Unidos de Pompeya, Club Huracán, Club Social y Sportivo Buenos Aires, Club Social Rivadavia, Palacio Rivadavia, Club Almagro, Chacarita, Premier, Editorial Haines, etc. In his youth he often danced at the main tango bars of Buenos Aires, such as Picadilly, Sans Souci, Montecarlo, and many more.
At the early ‘90s, he started organizing “milongas” himself. From 2003 to 2009 he leaded “La Milongüita”, one of the most famous “milongas” in Buenos Aires. In 2002 he won the First Metropolitan Tango Championship in Buenos Aires. In 2003 he obtained the Tango Teacher degree released by Buenos Aires City Government. He was then authorized to teach at the Centro Educativo del Tango de Buenos Aires (CETBA), created by Masters and Dancers Gloria and Rodolfo DINZEL.
His passion for dancing as well as the harmony he shares with his partner and the gracefulness of his movements, capture and celebrate the essence of traditional TANGO.
argentine tango, Buenos Aires, dance, milonguero, teaching
See Carmencita Calderon and Juan Averna Homenaje al Cachafaz Glorias Argentinas de Mataderos
(10 February 1905 – 31 October 2005)
The mythical partner of El Cachafaz.
In those early tango ambiences, with strong uncured brandy, with thick and cheap tobacco smoke, with tough quarrelsome rivalry, women scarcely showed their presence through foreign whores —mostly French— or girls from the interior popularly known as chinas.
The Buenos Aires dance was born bastard, macho and in the outskirts, so women had to wait for a long time before they were able to pass through those forbidden doors as well as the prudish society of the period. But tango waited for them and at its Customs granted safe-conducts to the dancing muses that came to bring light to the new dance floors in dancehalls and clubs that displaced the academias, bailongos and cabarutes.
For that it had to supress the impudence of its movements, transforming them into an intimate, sensual, in retreat, substance that encompassed a community whose feelings were untransferable and where men and women shared a common passion. One and the other created while dancing to the music beat, the man leading, marking bars and steps, the woman interpreting the way of answering and enjoying with her body what the male dancer was suggesting. Continue reading.
argentine tango, Buenos Aires, dance, history, milonguero
I got into tango because I needed to do something beautiful with my life, something fun, a little bit transgressor. I was alone, I had recently divorced, and having a tough time emotionally, and tango was a good option. So I began going to tango, to the academies, to the few that existed at that time. The teaching methods were very different. This was twenty years ago, therefore we did not have the difussion we have today. Many began with me those days, and some of us became professionals.
Before I began taking classes I knew what a regular argentinian of my age knows, somebody who tipically did not dance tango while growing up. When I was a child I got a little glimpse of tango but as something very naive. I used to go along with my dad to listen to Troilo playing live, even when my dad was not into the milonga scene. But Buenos Aires smells tango. The cities have a noise. The noise of Buenos Aires is tango. So even though you have not been in the tango scene, you have listened to tangos as a child at home, in the street, and you have seen people dancing tango. And this is true for me as well, although I come from the age of rock. The music that I listened to or that I have fun was rock and roll.
I’ve donne lots of things: yoga, bioenergetic dance, ballet, and that all helped me when it came to do tango.
I learned with some very good teachers, but mainly with the milongueros. I was very trapped into the whole milonga scene, for me it was a new and magical world, an unknown and at the same time very interesting world.
And I’m still loving tango because its musical embrace and for all I learned and I still do. Tango gave me the knowledge of my feminine side, the consiousness of how I really am as opposed to how I thought I was. It gave me things for my life outside of tango and realized how I am with respect to the masculine. I used to think my surrender was much more than what it really was. And I faced the fact that I was afraid to the other sex, as well I knew how fearful is the opposite sex to one’own. But dancing tango made me enjoy the body dialog.
To dance became balsamic for my soul. The moment in what you dance is eternal and evanescent at the same time, since what happens to you at that moment trascends all the rest that is making you feel sad or somber of whatever it’s you are feeling.
argentine tango, Buenos Aires, class, dance, milonguero
Ricardo Viqueira & Maria Plazaola dancing at Cachirulo milonga, 2014.
Is a “milonguero porteño” and his connection to tango has deep roots. In his teaching Ricardo emphasizes the close embrace style and the roles of the axis and connection. He teaches his students how to recognise opportunities to change direction, develop the ability to dance in small or crowded spaces, and to create their own personal dance.
He is one of the most respected and sought-after teachers in Buenos Aires where he regularly teaches and in the rest of the world is well known exponent of the “milonguero” culture.
Ricardo is renowned for dancing Milonga with Traspié and Canyengue. He was the man behind the revival of the historic and well known Club Sin Rumbo in the neighbourhood of Villa Urquiza. He also organized the Cristal Tango in Avenida San Martin in Buenos Aires.
Started to dance with Gloria and Rodolfo Dinzel in 1993. She later taught at the Universidad del Tango de Buenos Aires and since March 2001 she has shared the directorship of La Academia at de Tango Milonguero with Susana Miller, where she gives lessons and seminars throughout the year.From March 2002 she danced professionally with Carlos Gavito, with whom she performed and taught workshops in Buenos Aires, as well as on tours and in festivals in Europe, Japan and Russia. With Gavito she performed innumerable times, including at the Palais de Glace in Buenos Aires, and the closing nights of the International Tango Festival organized by the Government of the City of Buenos Aires and the Congreso Internacional de Tango Argentino (C.I.T.A.) in 2003 and 2004. She continues to tour internationally, and has participated in festivals throughout Europe, Asia, the Pacific and the USA.Maria studied anthropology and her work in tango is characterized by research and teaching of the milonguero language, which she learned and still learns dancing in the best milongas in Buenos Aires, although these days she is also happily dedicated to being a mother.
argentine tango, Buenos Aires, dance, milonguero