A milonga to celebrate the resilience of the Tango community, thanking the work of dancers, musicians, teachers, DJs, milonga organizers, and studio owners, and the support of all those like you who love Tango.
Why private lessons are the most effective way to learn Argentine Tango?
I had a nice conversation with a participant of an Argentine Tango event in the San Francisco Bay Area.
We talked about her sensations after taking many workshops and learning many movements and techniques.
She told me that only one time she felt something happening beyond the physical motion, although this sensation was rather sad, anguishing.
I asked her what was, in her opinion, the most important element in Tango and she answered “connection and musicality”.
I agreed with that, and I told her that we needed to make tangible these abstract concepts to find that “something missing” and asked her where, in her opinion, these abstract concepts become real…
She said that she could not find an answer.
I told her: in your body.
In a festival, taking classes with visitor teachers, doing the moves and techniques taught in classes with other participants with whom you never danced before and may never dance again, it is infrequent that you will get anything related to connection and musicality.
Connection and musicality are the most important elements of Argentine Tango.
In any class, with a mix of regulars and random people, it could be out of context to ask participants to connect because, in Argentine Tango, this means to hug each other.
One time, coming out from a concert in Market street in San Francisco, a friend of mine was with his wife walking together next to each other and hugging each other. While they were waiting for the stoplight to get green to cross the street, a lady from the street came up and said that watching them, she realized that she needed a hug and ask if my friend would allow her to hug him. My friend told me that he felt distrust. He let her hug him but cautiously kept his hands on his pockets, preventing the possibility of pickpocketing.
I tell you this to give you an approximation to the feelings possibly trigger by being required to hug and be hugged by strangers.
To work on the connection required to dance Argentine Tango, you need to work with a partner you care about and who cares about you, someone you can trust, looking at their eyes and embracing them warmly.
Also, it would help if you had a knowledgeable teacher that you can trust, with extensive experience dancing and teaching Argentine Tango.
Argentine Tango is profound.
In my private lessons, I make my students focus on the quality of their moves, musicality, and embrace, helping them bring out their own unique style as Argentine Tango dancers and as milongueros.
I start first working on footwork and techniques until students have incorporated them into their muscle memory.
Eventually, they won’t need to think about “what to do” and “how to do”.
The choreographic aspects of Argentine Tango become part of their natural flow, and when they embrace each other and start walking together on the dance floor at the pace of the music, it’s time for them to get inspired and express the poetry that is in them.
Such poetry is beautifully happy. It fills them up with joy which generously overflows to all. This poetry tells them a few secrets about themselves, about others, about life.
Among many things, what guides me in my private lessons is the understanding that the only one able to address the complexity of the human realm is the human.
Technological seeking of efficiency has developed the robot and artificial intelligence. Humans must act like robots and think like computers to make the association human/machine successful regarding productivity.
Question: is the human hug going to be replaced by an artificially made hug?
Dancing Tango we show off our capacity to hug, making with it a work of art.
Our hug is visible in as far as our footwork and beyond.
This particular way of embracing is what distinguishes Argentine Tango from other partner dances.
It is precisely this characteristic what makes private lessons an essential part of your learning path.
Embracing your partner and dance Argentine Tango is to have a profound and creative conversation, full of joy and awakenings.
The process of learning to dance Argentine Tango requires training yourself in the art of such conversation.
There are not general formulas for your spontaneity, wit, and charm.
Connection and musicality, the most important elements of Argentine Tango, are the intrinsic fabric of this conversation.
Only in private lessons you will be guided accurately on the nuances and infinite shades that Argentine Tango can bring to your experience of dancing.
I had the pleasure and honor to be interviewed by Vance Woods (Independent Writer/Editor | Team Lead – Translations/Copy Editor – USA | Archivoz Magazine | Cataloger Valley Library Oregon State University) for his blog “Becoming Argentina”.
We talked about how did I get to where I am today and how did the Escuela de Tango de Buenos Aires come into being; about Tango as a multifaceted manifestation in dance, music, poetry, and more; he asked me what is my favorite tango lyric; about Tango, Argentina, and Buenos Aires; about the effects the Covid-19 pandemic has had on tango culture; about what it means to be a milonguero; on Tango as an industry as opposed to Tango as a cultural practice, and how these two aspects interact; and why do you I think that Tango has so strongly appeal.
I enjoyed so much this interview and I know you are going to enjoy it too.