How to practice and improve Argentine Tango- Lesson 3

How to practice and improve your Tango: Lesson 3

How to practice and improve your Tango: Lesson 3

In order to dance Argentine Tango you need discipline to practice.

Through learning and practice you will achieve your goal of being a great dancer.

1- Walk:

Pendulum motion of leg:

For followers:

With partner:

2- Change of system & foot-change:

Basic foot change:

More elaborated foot changes:

3- Crossed system walk and backward ocho:

Try this first:

And then try this:

4- Change of direction.

These are very useful elements to dance at milongas.

 

5- Chair exercise:

Master this exercise and you’ll master every move in Tango!!!

Learn to dance Argentine Tango

6- Let’s see how they work together:

We have lots of videos for you to learn, practice and improve!

Watch our video lessons

Marcelo Solis and Miranda Lindelow performing Argentine Tango in San Francisco

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Marcelo Solis answers what is Argentine Tango. He is an expert.

How to dance Argentine Tango

An introduction to the most important details

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Anibal Troilo and his orchestra | Argentine Tango music to learn to dance

Argentine Tango music

Music to learn to dance

Listen and dance!

History of Argentine Tango: El Cachafaz and Carmencita Calderon at Tango (Movie 1933)

History of Argentine Tango

Tango is a culture

Learn more about Tango

How to improve your Argentine Tango lesson 2

How to practice and improve your Tango: Lesson 2

How to practice and improve your Tango: Lesson 2

Did you miss our first lesson…?

Here you will find more exercises and guidance to learn, practice and improve your Tango.

You must always start with the most important move in Tango: walking.

1- Walk (forward and backward):

For followers:

With partner:

Also with partner:

Here you can watch how walking becomes the dance of Tango:

Some words about the meaning of walking in Tango:

Walking, in Tango, is more than basic: it is what we are.

For some time now we have stopped walking, instead sitting all day long in front of screens, steering wheels, and other people.

That’s why we feel so at home dancing Tango, in good company, creating something with our body that is real and objective, something that ceases to exist immediately after dancing, leaving us in a state of relaxed pleasure and untranslatable wisdom.

Learn to dance Argentine Tango

2- Forward/Backward move

For followers:

With partner

4- Backward ochos exercises:




5- Basic backward ocho

Here you can see how to integrate the backward ocho making it become part of your walking:

We have lots of videos for you to learn, practice and improve!

Watch our video lessons

Marcelo Solis and Miranda Lindelow performing Argentine Tango in San Francisco

ATTENTION!!!

30% discount for all our classes and private lessons

These resources are FREE, but if you want to help us, you can do it while getting a great deal for our group classes and private lessons. Promotion code:

LOVETANGOALWAYS

(This promotion last until shelter-in-place order expires)

Get a good deal while helping us

See more Argentine Tango lessons:

Learn to dance Argentine Tango

Marcelo Solis answers what is Argentine Tango. He is an expert.

How to dance Argentine Tango

An introduction to the most important details

Find the answer

Anibal Troilo and his orchestra | Argentine Tango music to learn to dance

Argentine Tango music

Music to learn to dance

Listen and dance!

History of Argentine Tango: El Cachafaz and Carmencita Calderon at Tango (Movie 1933)

History of Argentine Tango

Tango is a culture

Learn more about Tango

Marcelo Solis bailando con Lola

What is Tango?

What is Argentine Tango?

ine Tango in Buenos Aires with Marcelo solis at Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires

“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.

In America (North America), people think of Tango as a dance, (always with the prejudice that dance means “performance”, conceived as something put on for a spectator,) perhaps also as a music genre, but the Spanish speaking population of the world knows that Tango is also words, lyrics, poetry, “chamuyo” (for Argentineans).

These are words essential to knowing Tango in all its relevant aspects. Enrique Santos Discépolo, author of many essential tangos, declared that “Tango is a sad thought that is danced”.

Every word in this phrase demands explanations that will never exhaust their meaning. What kind of “sad thought” then, is Tango?

It is looking at the past with the feelings of what went away, and the realization of how little we have left to leave us, too.

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“Jamás retornarás”

“Cuando dijo adiós, quise llorar…
Luego sin su amor, quise gritar…
Todos los ensueños que albergó mi corazón
(toda mi ilusión),
cayeron a pedazos.
Pronto volveré, dijo al partir.
Loco la esperé… ¡Pobre de mí!
Y hoy, que tanto tiempo ha transcurrido sin volver,
siento que he perdido su querer.

Jamás retornarás…
lo dice el alma mía,
y en esta soledad
te nombro noche y día.
¿Por qué, por qué te fuiste de mi lado
y tan cruel has destrozado
mi corazón?
Jamás retornarás…
lo dice el alma mía
y, aunque muriendo está,
te espera sin cesar.

Cuánto le imploré: vuelve, mi amor…
Cuánto la besé, ¡con qué fervor!
Algo me decía que jamás iba a volver,
que el anochecer
en mi alma se anidaba.
Pronto volveré, dijo al partir.
Mucho la esperé… ¡Pobre de mí!
Y hoy, que al fin comprendo
la penosa y cruel verdad,
siento que la vida se me va.”

 

 

“You will never return”

When she said goodbye, I wanted to cry…
Then without her love, I wanted to scream…
All the daydreams dwelling in my heart
(all I dreamt of),
fell to pieces.
I’ll be back soon, she said as she left.
A fool, I waited for her… Poor me!
And today, that so much time has passed without her coming back,
I can feel that I have lost her love.

You will never return…
my soul says so,
and in this solitude
I call your name night and day.
Why, why did you leave my side
and so cruel, have you destroyed
my heart?
You will never return…
my soul says,
and, although it is dying,
it is waiting for you incessantly.

How much I begged her: come back, my love…
How much I kissed her, how fervently!
Something told me that she would never return,
as the nightfall
was nesting in my soul.
I’ll be back soon, she said as she left.
I waited for her so much… Poor me!
And today, that at last I understand
the painful and cruel truth,
I feel that life is leaving me.

Osmar Maderna portrait. Argentine Tango musician, composer and conductor.

The lyrics are about love, about a broken heart, an unfulfilled promise and unsatisfied hopes. It is also a view of life from the perspective of realizing that life, and everything in it, goes away: “Y hoy, que al fin comprendo / la penosa y cruel verdad, / siento que la vida se me va.” (And today, that at last I understand / the painful and cruel truth, / I feel that life is leaving me.)

Did Osmar Maderna, one of the authors, know that he was destined to die, suddenly, at age 32, in an accident?

His short life was feverishly productive: a piano virtuoso, a gifted composer, a in-demand arranger, a successful conductor, a great friend, a beloved husband, a passionate amateur aviator… When he left his home, in Pehuajó, a city located 230 miles southwest of Buenos Aires, to start his independent life as a musician in the capital, he asked his brother to tell everyone that he went to buy a bandoneon

Learn to dance Argentine Tango

Marcelo Solis Argentine Tango with Sofia Pellicciaro

How can one not be passionate about Tango?

Tango gives you purpose:

to make the world beautiful, starting with yourself, since you are the most accessible, affordable and appropriate canvas to be the experimental field for you to probe into your understanding of beauty, before being accepted by others and daring yourself to go beyond yourself and do whatever you want with it in a world into which you exist, a world populated with meanings that tend to be shaped by prejudices and misinterpretations, by accumulation and overlapping of meanings, gifted, inherited, imposed by others, or simply developed by you to justify some of your beliefs, hide your hypocrisies and/or calm your anxieties.

You will need to probe your creation, your dance, your style, to be refreshing and more meaningful than what is already out there.

That is exactly what it is to be a “milonguera” (a woman who regularly dances tango) or “milonguero” (same for a man).

We, milongueros, decided to accept to live in a world that reproduces the kind of existence described above, where our life is possible not only by our participation in the economy of our societies, by having a job like everyone else, but beyond this primary satisfaction of our elementary needs, we EXIST in accordance with what is beautiful, with “compás y elegancia” (musicality and aesthetic energy efficiency), shaping every manifestation of our being-in-the-world-with-others according to proportions that are the same, that seem, from our human perception, to underlie the universe.

Pythagoras, music, proportions and cosmos.

Pythagoras (495 BC), after researching what notes sounded pleasant together, worked out the frequency ratios (or string length ratios with equal tension,) and found that they had a particular mathematical relationship. The octave was found to be a 1:2 ratio, and what we call today a fifth to be a 2:3 ratio.

All the notes of a musical scale are produced by ratios.

Musical notes and ratios

Same as rhythm can be defined by ratios:

Rhythm defined by ratios

Including the rests -pauses-, essential to dancing Tango:

Pauses, rests, essential to dancing Tango

And the proportions of our bodies:

Vitruvian man Leonardo

Proportions are everywhere:

  • Proportions in clouds

  • Proportions in snails

The artist uses this awareness of proportions as a guide to creation.

Mona Lisa Leonardo

And now, combine all these proportions with another human, who, being of the same species, is also different from you.

  • One of these differences is that we are sexed.
    Being sexed is related to our mortality. We need this duality to preserve our species. And when the raw sensations of our sexuality fade away, only the human embrace -more than anything- still satisfies our need for consolation in the face of the abyss of the infinite void of death, always ahead.

  • How fulfilling to learn about our bodies, about our existence in the world, discipline and train ourselves to extract beauty out of the depths of our lives! How exciting to engage in such adventures in the company of that mysterious being that is so familiar and yet such a stranger! A being that calls us like the mermaids would, with a voice that draws out from our perception all other indicia; which will harmonize with that music, which, in its brave approach, recalls the tragic inevitability of a storm that will take away all our superficial possessions, and leave us only with ourselves, longing for an embrace.

  • In Plato’s “The Symposium”, Aristophanes tells a legend, that the human being was, in its origins, a double being, composed of two entities, of what is today a human body. These creatures offended the gods, so they decided to cut them in half. The beings’ first reaction was to embrace each other.

Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires - Marcelo Solis (Enrosque)

We like to say in Argentina: “el Tango te espera”

(Tango is waiting for you)

This patient waiting is another manifestation of its call, not a call that awakens our curiosity, like the sounds of our cellphones, always buzzing WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram and text messages.

It is the call of a challenge, that is not easy to respond to, that is not user friendly, that makes you think, that scares you and pushes you away in the same measure of (if we could quantify it somehow) seduction and attractiveness with which it appears to you.

Do not worry. It’s great to have that feeling! That means you are alive!

Resources:
Enrique Santos Discépolo
Urban dictionary
Osmar Maderna
Miguél Caló
Martin Heidegger
Roy Hornsby, “What Heidegger Means by Being-in-the-World”
Sigmund Freud
Gilles Deleuze
Michel Foucault
Michel Onfray
Jean Baudrillard
Friedrich Nietzsche
Plato’s “The Symposium”

This article continues…

Learn to dance Argentine Tango

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How to practice and improve your Tango?

How to practice and improve your Tango?

You can always practice and improve.

Here is the most important move in Tango: walking.

You can see here how we walk alternately in parallel and crossed system throughout the dance floor.

Do you know what parallel and crossed system mean?

Watch this video.

Here you will find a clear explanation of the meaning and differentiation of parallel and crossed system.

In order to improve your Tango…

is it good to create a choreography?

To choose a song and place elements in order accordingly?

While this is not a bad option, we suggest instead to create brief sequences of 2 or 3 elements that you can do in a small space, like the ones we usually get to do at milongas, so when you dance at milongas, you can use them, adapt and reshape them as you move on the line of dance.

This also applies for sequences of follower’s embellishments.

Follower’s can devise possible embellishments for each of the elements usually lead (backward and forward walk, ochos, molinetes, boleos, etc.)

Here is one element to start creating your sequences:

One time you have your sequences ready, study segments of them that could be reorganize as new sequences or as connectors between single elements.

Here you can find an example of the results of such approach:

We have lots of videos for you to learn, practice and improve!

Watch our video lessons

Marcelo Solis and Miranda Lindelow performing Argentine Tango in San Francisco

ATTENTION!!!

30% discount for all our classes and private lessons

These resources are FREE, but if you want to help us, you can do it while getting a great deal for our group classes and private lessons. Promotion code:

LOVETANGOALWAYS

(This promotion last until shelter-in-place order expires)

Get a good deal while helping us

See more Argentine Tango lessons:

 

Marcelo Solis answers what is Argentine Tango. He is an expert.

How to dance Argentine Tango

An introduction to the most important details

Find the answer

Anibal Troilo and his orchestra | Argentine Tango music to learn to dance

Argentine Tango music

Music to learn to dance

Listen and dance!

Dancing Argentine Tango. Feet.

Requirements for learning to dance Argentine Tango

Requirements for learning to dance Tango

Marcelo Solis and Mimi dancing Argentine Tango at Lafayette milonga.

1) Self-motivation

To dance Tango is to become a milonguero, that means: it is a lifetime decision.

Nobody can convince you to do Tango.

Only you, if you can see what a fulfilling, wise and beautiful life Tango has in store, can make the decision.

Make this clear to yourself.

Find your way of learning Tango

Marcelo Solis dancing Argentine Tango at a performance in San Francisco

2) Preparedness

You need to condition yourself.

Work on balance, coordination, a natural elasticity of your body, a reasonable stamina, emotional self-control.

We provide you with all of these in our classes, group, but fundamentally in private lessons.

You need to focus in what concerns you.

Only an experienced maestro in one-on-one sessions will be able to address what is fundamental to your Tango.

Find you class or book your private lesson

Dancing Argentine Tango with Julia at Lafayette milonga

3) Personal initiative

Research.

Your starting point is our website.

Learn about the music you will dance to for the rest of your life.

Watch videos of milongueros dancing, and see what you will inherit from them and one day pass along to future generations of milongueros.

Ask questions.

See our Tango resources’ page

Inside edge position of the feet

4) Practice beyond class

Plan a routine of exercises.

You can always visit our website for ideas.

Watch our video lessons

Dancing Argentine Tango at Lafayette milonga

5) Be an example

To dance Tango is to become the best of all your possible selves.

To dance Tango is always being under the spotlight.

Come to milongas.

We organize them in the Bay Area and we would like to take you to Buenos Aires’ milongas with us.

Join us at our next milonga

Inside edge position of the feet

6) Go to Buenos Aires

Not once, but often.

Be guided through the milongas in Buenos Aires.

There is no better way to become part of Tango than to be introduced by someone who is already a part of it.

Join our next trip

Tango changes your life forever!!!

Learn to dance Argentine Tango and make your life a work of Art

 

Marcelo Solis dancing with Sofia Pellicciaro

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Dancing Tango in Buenos Aires with Marcelo Solis

BUENOS AIRES

IS WAITING FOR YOU

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Argentine Tango orchestra

TANGO MUSIC

FROM THE GOLDEN ERA

Listen…

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