Articles about Argentine Tango

How can one not be passionate about Tango?
Tango gives you purpose: to make the world beautiful, starting with yourself.

Filter - All
Articles
What is Tango?
Sort By Date
  • Dancing with Lola at milonga Parakultural, Salon Canning, Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    Walking is at the root of our existence
    April 13, 2018
    Our head is placed in an upright position, allowing for the development of powerful vision and an extraordinary brain; our arms and hands free from the task of locomotion, set to create new things and reshape the world.
  • Argentine-Tango-classes-San-Francisco-Bay-Area-Marcelo-Solis
    READ MORE
    How to Tango
    November 18, 2017
    1- Let Tango call you, seduce you, charm you, bewitch you. “Tango you are an enchanter of those who listen to your sounds. Tango you attract hearts, with your sweet songs and your bandoneons.”
  • Marcelo-Solis-Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops.
    READ MORE
    Why Tango?
    July 24, 2017
    I do not want to idealize the “natural man”, but our civilization took away the graceful walk of an elegant hunter-gatherer, leaving us instead the limping of a wounded beast.
  • Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas. With Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    Milongueando in Buenos Aires
    July 19, 2017
    …there is world in which being friendly does not mean being agreeable nor disrespectful of differences, but rather encouraging the individual pursuit of excellence, a road and a goal that is accessible only to you, since we are all different by nature. In this world we learn by imitating, knowing that it will be impossible to be like those we imitate, since they already prevented us that it is not only impossible, but unethical. In this world we need to develop our own interpretation of beauty and demonstrate that it fits the community by concretely putting it into practice, in concrete actions.
  • Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas.
    READ MORE
    Tango is Life
    June 12, 2017
    Dancing Tango is not only about you and you-and-your-partner. It is also a social event and a culture. It involves more than two: those present at the milonga (tango dance party) in which you assist, and also all those who are intimately related to Tango, at your present time, in the past and in the future (other dancers, the composers of the songs that you dance to, the musicians who recorded the songs, all the people who were passionate about Tango throughout the history of this manifestation of our very unique nature as humans, and those, in the future, who will inherit it after us).
  • Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires. Learn to dance.
    READ MORE
    What is Tango?
    June 12, 2017
    “Tango is Life”. What does this sentence mean? It suggests that those who do not tango don’t know what life is. Can such a radical thought make sense? Ask anyone who is involved in Tango, passionately, which is the only way to be involved in it, and that will be the answer. This attitude in relation to Tango is rooted in the fact that Tango gives you fulfillment, opening you up to the possibility of making your life a work of Art.
  • Argentine Tango classes with Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires. San Francisco Bay Area.
    READ MORE
    Why do I dance Tango?
    May 2, 2017
    * This is a response I gave to this question in a survey: I am alive, and I know it. I feel life, and I am aware of being here and now. How long is “now” going to last?
  • Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas. With Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    Tango is a social and partner's dance
    January 11, 2017
    Tango is a social and partner dance that originated in the city of Buenos Aires, where, together with its music, poetry and culture, the population consider it their identity.
  • Osvaldo y Coca Cartery. Maestros milongueros. Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    Culture, Buenos Aires and why Tango
    January 1, 2016
    Let’s say you’re in Buenos Aires and you’re looking for a class or milonga. Typically, you might do some research using the internet or follow the advice of someone you don’t know that well, which could lead you to missing out on what only Buenos Aires has to offer in relation to Tango.
  • Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.articles about Argentine Tango. By Marcelo Solis.
    READ MORE
    What makes you a good dancer, and Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires
    December 30, 2015
    The Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires is an enterprise entirely dedicated to Tango.  It is through Tango that we understand culture. It is a way of life. It is a way to see our own lives in the context of realities such as society, individuality, beauty, responsibility. These words seem abstract, but they manifest as real problems in our everyday life. Tango lends the experience of past generations, gives us the perspective of how people in the past lived and danced, of the mistakes they made in the process. It offers us the opportunity to make better choices in the present, and through our sense of responsibility, personal strength and awareness, to make life more beautiful. Tango shows us that our individual lives are meaningless without a connection to past generations and traditions that link us to others in the present and throughout history. Passion for life, which we can only achieve and sustain through our subjectivity, is necessary to give meaning to our lives and make valuable contributions to society. What I am describing can be found in the lyrics of many tango songs. For example, below is a verse from “Canción de rango”: “Que bailen los que vienen pa’ bailar, que escuchen los que quieran escuchar. Pa’ todos hay un tango acompasado, pretencioso y retobado reinando en mi ciudad.” This first verse talks about society, made up of uncountable individuals driven by their own passions: dancing, enjoying the music… there is something in tango for everyone. Tango is for all. Another verse: “Yo canto porque vivo la emoción del tango cadencioso y compadrón.” In these lyrics the individual presents his motives: passion, emotions. Still, these passions are related to something that transcends him as an isolated individual: Tango. And finally: “Yo canto cuando alguno pega el grito que hay un tango compadrito buscando un corazón.” This verse demonstrates how he is moved by responsibility of responding to a call from Tango and others. If you listen to any rendition of this song, you will be moved by the total commitment of the orchestra/singer into the composition. The authors, Suñé and Kaplún, really left the ball ready for a goal in this match. I enjoy all of them: Demare/Arrieta, Biagi/Acuna, Tanturi/Castillo, Caló/Rufino, Pugliese/Córdoba, Troilo/Goyeneche. I just discovered the last one: http://youtu.be/Lo51tqpkLSk I am not going to talk about the dance. You must do it, if you want to know anything about it. It is pure beauty. The Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires is based in Buenos Aires, where it has a staff of regular and guest maestros such as Olga Besio, Blas Catrenau and Luciana Guido, Myriam Pincen, Néstor La Vitola, Verónica Olivera, among many more, and Néstor Pellicciaro, who is also one of the co-directors. The other co-director (and author of this article) is me, Marcelo Solis, working in San Francisco Bay Area. ETBA also has branches in Europe and Asia. Since tango is a globalized phenomenon that is rooted in Buenos Aires, we promote a strong connection to the roots of tango at each branch abroad. Teachers at every location organize classes and events keeping in mind that their goal is to see their students dancing in Buenos Aires’ milongas, helping them to integrate to the milonguero culture. In order to make that possible, every year, the Escuela organizes several tours to the Tango capital. See more information about tours here… I recently came back from Buenos Aires where I was guiding my tour. The experience was very positive, and all of the participants became better dancers. That makes me feel deeply happy and proud. And now the question is… what makes you a good dancer? My answer in the framework of Tango: 1.    To be madly in love with the music. Tango originates as a dance first, and then a specific music was associated to it. The first milongueros would dance using the particular technique of dancing based on the embrace, to the rhythms in vogue at the second half of the 1800’s: waltz, polka, habanera, that came to the port of Buenos Aires from abroad, and a local rhythm called milonga. Musicians were itinerant at the time. They played improvisations based on popular melodies, and received payment directly from the dancers. The musicians who paid attention to the dancers learned to play to their cadence, the natural inertia of a couple dancing embraced. That was greatly appreciated by the dancers and rewarded with a greater pay. That is how tango evolved as a musical genre. This process went on, with a period where tango was partially disassociated from the dance; the tendency that today, in retrospect, we relate to Carlos Gardel, a singer, and Julio De Caro, a violin player, composer and director. It lasted until 1935, when Juan D’Arienzo initiated the Golden Era of Tango by reconnecting tango to its roots as a dance. The music from that period (that continued strong for a decade, and faded out gradually after –although never completely disappearing) is played nowadays in the milongas in Buenos Aires. That is why it is not possible to understand Tango without passionate love for its music. The music tells you how to dance, tells you what tango is. To read more about the history of Tango, click here. 2.    To have the patience to achieve a great control of your movement, up to the “subtleties” level. Be never satisfied with what you are already able to do. However, do not allow the quest for improvement deprive you and your partner of the joy of dancing. 3.    To have the passion and the commitment to practice, to put aside other things and make time to practice. Nothing will change or improve in your dance without physically doing and repeating your exercises in order to build up the necessary good habits. I heard people saying that this is neurotic obsessive behavior, an addiction, and other similar things. My response to them is: when an activity makes you stronger, wiser, more aware and alert, healthier in general, it cannot be classified so negatively. Although, for some, it may be an escapism... But that is not Tango. 4.    To be generous, pay more attention to your possibilities and opportunities to give, rather than calculating how much you would receive. I tell you right away: it may be a long time before you can truly enjoy it. It is always going to be a work in progress that is never finished. It will ask you to be always in alert mode, to consider more what you can do and how much you can give, not how much good it is given to you. From the moment you go to your first class or your first milonga, the right attitude will be “I come to participate”, rather than “I come to receive”. 5.    To have the desire to share, pay attention to your partner’s joy, to dance “with” your partner. That is the same principle stated in 4, but on the partnership level. At the couple level, tango is made by two people. They have to act as accomplices, give support to each other, encourage their respective strengths, provide support and a friendly challenge in relation to their respective weaknesses. 6.    To respect the other people's space. Tango is intimate, but should not be invasive. That is why, to give one example, “cabeceo” is so essential to tango: you ought to ask a partner from a distance if she or he would allow you to get so intimately closed. A milonguera or milonguero has to be aware of the following: a good dancer is clean, well mannered, respectful, strong, considerate and gentle. 7.    To be humble, even when you have a lot to be proud about. The greatest of the greatest dancers keep learning. 8.    To be aware that Tango is not only “your” Tango, to acknowledge that it has belonged to others before you, to respect what Tango is, so your love for Tango grows on the soil of what has already been done. That implies your acting in order to know tango better, its history, the people who made Tango their lives. 9.    To assume responsibility that others who come after you will get to know Tango from you. I would like you to tell me what other elements, in your opinion, make a good dancer. Please write to me at marcelo@escuelatangoba.com Warmest regards, Marcelo Solis You may also like to read "What it means to be a good student", click here. "What is Tango?", click here. Also "Dancing is a lot more", click here.
  • Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas. With Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    Tango is a social and partner dance
    September 16, 2014
    Tango is a social and partner dance that originated in the city of Buenos Aires, where, together with its music, poetry and culture, the population consider it their identity.
  • Argentine-Tango-classes-San-Francisco-Bay-Area-Marcelo-Solis
    READ MORE
    What is your goal in learning tango?
    September 7, 2013
    I want to ask you a question: What is your goal in learning tango? Tango is a multidimensional form of art. Most see it primarily as a dance. This is absolutely true: it is a dance. However, what I consider unavoidable to understand is that dance involves much more than an activity reduced to visiting a dance studio, practicing a series of body movements and gestures that later are going to be repeated more or less by heart, with attention only to the body movements, without any consideration of the music (and by “music” I mean: listening to every musical note, beat and silence of it, knowing the name of the song, who plays it, who composed the song, the general history of all of it and all of them ..), the environment in which the dance is going to be performed (in case of tango: the “milongas”), the social aspects of it (the codes of behavior at the milongas, its ethics and aesthetics), and the role that the dancer (as an individual participating in that whole approach to dancing) is going to take. If I am going to learn all that, if I am going to dedicate that much of my time and energy to it, I would only do it if I am passionate about it. And why? What is my goal in all that? Sometimes, in my classes, I have to face the problem of letting my students know that dancing does not require “pretending”, but rather “being” yourself. A particular movement is usually so simple, that the real core of the move is the character that you imprint in it, which is your character, your “self”. Since there exists a prejudice to see dancing only as a “performing art”, the initial approach is usually to “pretend”: something like pretending to be on a stage dancing for an audience. And a movement that in essence is very simple (and easy), comes out with a very artificial look. That is all unconscious. Naturally there is a tendency to hide ourselves from the eyes of others, and that artificiality serves as “defense mechanism” to protect you from whoever may take advantage of knowing you. All that makes you put in a lot of effort. Dancing is supposed to be easy. It will be easy if you strengthen yourself. Tango asks you to be honest, and show your honest self. Very probably, at the beginning you do not recognize yourself in what appears when you allow yourself to be natural, let it go, and you may not like it! But, good news, once you know yourself and how you actually move, you can change it, you can shape it, and you can work on making yourself more elegant without pretending. And that is going to make you stronger. And for that, you will be thankful to tango forever. That is why I consider the process of teaching/learning tango as requiring some “familiarity” approach. Let’s be aware that the generation of my parents in Argentina learned tango from close relatives and friends, so those “defense mechanisms” were at their lowest level of alert. When I came to teach tango for the first time to the Bay Area, I tried to adapt my teaching method to the general rationalistic/ballroom-like approach the students were expecting (my limited knowledge of English, and the fact that everybody was more or less of a stranger to me also contributed to the adaptation of that approach). However, overtime I realized that it mostly did not help students to understand the particular characteristics that makes tango what it is. So I decided to return to the “familiar” approach we all are used to in Argentina, although sometime it does not match the new students’ expectations. Many times a new student asks me: - When am I going to be ready to go to milongas? My answer is: - Whenever you want to go. The student would reply: - But I am a beginner, those people in the milongas are too advanced, and they are not going to dance with me! What you really need, in order to go to a milonga and have a good time, is basic social skills. Basically, you need self-awareness and a good sense of placement. If you are nice, people will be nice to you. If you relax and enjoy of being at a place where everybody is enjoying the experience of tango, pay attention and listen to the beautiful music tango is, allow yourself to be happy (tango should make you happy. Why would you do it if were not so?), the aura of happiness makes people want to be near you. Milongas are the best places to see people dancing tango. It is the place to see tango in its own environment. It is a great opportunity for you, during your first visits to the milongas, to watch the dance, to see the dancers. You will learn a lot just from watching. Also, if tango is to become a part of your life, the milonga is going to be your home. Those who do not regularly go to milongas develop an abstract (false, incongruent) image of tango. Beware: there are many “teachers” on that list. Tango is democratic. At the milongas, your title, either you are a PHD, a CEO, a Prince, a tango teacher or a performer does not matter. What matters is how good you are as a milonguero or milonguera. When I talk about milongas and milongueros, my image is one of my favorite milongas in Buenos Aires. I work on reproducing their main characteristics here, in the Bay Area, organizing and hosting such milongas as Café Florida, Lafayette Milonga and San Jose Milonga, and educating my students as milongueros and milongueras in my classes. I want to take an opportunity now to say thank you to all my business partners, assistants, dedicated students and regulars of the milongas and classes I host. It would not be possible without you. Thank you!!! In order to effectively recreate what I enjoy there, one of my key activities are my tours to Buenos Aires. I organize a tour twice a year, during spring and fall. These tours are very educative: Buenos Aires is a big city; you have hundreds of choices to do tango activities. But keep in mind that tango is, for many, a business, a source of income. When tango came back to the mainstream in Argentina, during the middle 80’s, it was a” tsunami”. It suddenly inundated the sociocultural scene of Buenos Aires and other cities. It produced a big demand on the “market” that was very undersupplied. The milongueros at the time, were very unaware of that process. You can take a look to the documentary “Tango, bayle nuestro” (“Tango, our dance”), by Jorge Zanada, 1988. It that documentary you can see the old milongueros of 1987 stating that tango “had died”. It happened that most of the people, who took the lead in satisfying the strong “demand” for tango, were “sociocultural entrepreneurs”, only tangentially related to tango. Some of them are still predominant in the tango scene of Buenos Aires. Their initial lead was essential to the revival of tango. They helped to create the conditions that allowed later the milongueros’ comeback to the mainstream, so the people with real knowledge of tango were able to organize milongas and teach new milongueros. That is why, if you go to Buenos Aires without a guidance of a real insider, most probably you will come to know tango as an entertainment industry, much improvised, very “homemade”, but an industry, not a culture. One last thing: is walking boring? When you exercise your walk at the beginning of the class, do you feel bored? I have to tell you: if you get bored when you do this exercise (walking), you most probably will be a very boring person to dance with, when you dance during the milonga later. That is the moment to exercise your passion, your feelings, your emotions to come out in your walk, your connection with the music, not to show it off (the pseudo performer that pretends), but to explore your own emotions. THAT will make you a dancer who is fun, enjoyable, and interesting to dance with. SaveSave
  • Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas. With Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    Tango is passion
    September 7, 2013
    Dear students, milongueras and milongueros, I’ve being very busy since I came back from Buenos Aires. I had plans to be in BA right now, but so much is going on, I am still here. Among many things that I had no time to do writing about tango is the one I missed the most. In the meantime, all that kept me busy –mainly, teaching new students- gave me new experiences, new approaches, and new thoughts about how to present tango to those who are curious about it, and show up to a tango class for the first time. Tango is passion. A new student asked me in the middle of her first private class if I thought that she was going to be able to dance tango. I answered that we were dancing to the music of Juan D’Arienzo Orchestra, recorded between 1940 and 1943, with Héctor Mauré singing and a 20 year’s old Fulvio Salamanca at the piano. I told her that Mauré used to be a professional boxer, until a bad punch made him quit boxing and dedicate himself exclusively to singing. I told her that if she gets to love tango to the point of finding that information really interesting, relevant, then she would dance, otherwise, not. That I could not order her to “love it”, same as it would not be possible to order someone to fall in love with a person. Whether she falls in love with tango or not is nothing I can do about. I cannot make a new student passionate about tango. I can share my passion with my students. But many would judge me crazy, obsessed, neurotic, and I would reply that while you judge, you cannot dance. Dancing tango implies dancing every single note, every nuance in the expressivity of each musician of each song. It takes knowing those songs and those musicians as you know your closest relatives and friends. I am satisfied if the new student learns, at least, to respect tango for what it is. I am very patient. Tango made me so. You do not have to rush in getting to know tango. Tango is infinite. Also, you have to enjoy your path in becoming a real milonguera or milonguero, enjoy it the way you enjoy a tasty flavored meal, even for the moments it may get too spicy. I will not say “I told you that already.” I will always present the concepts you need to know and apply, as if it were the first time I am presenting them to you. Repetition is needed, but we can make repetition a non-boring exercise if we do it to the wonderful music that tango is. I promise not to say: “Just”. Sometimes I’ve being in the situation of explaining a move that is simple in appearance, and the student says “Just that!?”, or “Ok, just that”, or something similar. Each single move is very, very, very important. Every little part of a move is something you have to feel fully. “I got it”. Each move in tango requires decades to be understood. We have to begin somewhere, and I will patiently show you the move. But you probably won’t be able to see it all. So, please, do not undervalue it. You need to be very humble to learn to tango. Please, accept that you start from ignorance, and have respect for the one that shares with you something he loves a lot. It is like introducing you to my family. Now, I remember a joke: One boy says to another boy – Look at that woman! She has a moustache!!! The other boy responds – She is my mom. And the first boy clarifies –The moustache looks very well on her!!!
  • Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas. With Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    What can we do to contribute to the health and continued development of Bay Area Tango community?
    September 7, 2013
    Dear milongueros and milongueras, Tango is fun. It makes us happy. But Tango is also RESPONSIBILITY. What can we do to contribute to the health and continued development of Bay Area Tango community? Here is my answer: Milongueros and milongueras: 1- Dance better. 2- Behave better. 3- Dress better. Milonga organizers: 1- Choose good DJs. 2- Give milongueros the necessary set up a milonga should have. 3- Pay attention to what actually happens on the dance floor. 4- Get to know, greet at the entrance, and say goodbye at the exit, to everyone coming to the milonga. 5- Introduce new people at the milonga to the regulars. 6- Travel to Buenos Aires and go to traditional milongas with high level of dancing to see how things are organized and run there. DJs: 1- Go to Buenos Aires and visit milongas to learn how to do their job, not one time, but several times a year. Teachers: 1- Stop trying to attract customers by showing them steps inappropriate to the milonga, and therefore, to Tango itself. 2- Go to the milongas, and show their students and the community that the way they teach is the way they dance at the milongas. 3- Go to Buenos Aires not one, but several times a year, study there with the milongueros, meaning: the ones that dance Tango. Prove themselves to have their place in the wide Tango community, and not to be mere local instructors without any connection to Buenos Aires, and therefore, to Tango. To follow these guidelines, we will get together and put them in practice in all my classes and events through the Bay Area. I am looking forward to seeing you and dancing with you. Warm regards, Marcelo Solis  
  • Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas. With Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
    READ MORE
    The Tango Journey
    February 19, 2013
    How long since you have started your Tango journey?
  • San Francisco Milonga
    READ MORE
    Tango is education
    January 12, 2013
    Perhaps you were asking yourself: Why a Tango School?

Explore more

Argentine Tango classes in the San Francisco Bay Area
New to Tango?

Start here

Argentine Tango dance classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced level. Argentine Tango dance Private lessons. one to one Argentine dance lessons. Argentine Tango dance lessons for couples. Argentine Tango Milongas and workshops. San Francisco, Lafayette, Walnut Creek, Orinda, Danville, San Jose, Cupertino, Campbell, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas. With Marcelo Solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires.
Learn more

About Tango

Marcelo Solis Teaching Method
Our teaching

Philosophy and Method

Know more

About Us