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Beyond Steps: Fostering True Tango Enjoyment, 07/18/2023

Updated: Oct 5, 2023


Beyond Steps: Fostering True Tango Enjoyment


Ah, the nostalgic amusement of crowded milongas in Buenos Aires, where I find myself reminiscing about the complicated steps and figures taught in countless classes and workshops over two decades ago. I can't help but ask, "Why on earth were they teaching us those absurdities?" In reality, there's no room for such complexity on the dance floor, and nobody seems to care about them. It's all about embracing a partner, feeling the music, and walking in sync, creating resonance with fellow dancers.


Aside from classes and workshops, I learned tango by watching and imitating others. Back then, learning materials were limited to worn-out VHS tapes, which I cherished and endured even the dubious content they contained.


Nowadays, social media floods us with tango clips. Some resonate with my heart, but most showcase moves you won't find in milongas. Sure, they're performing and have to impress with flashy steps or exaggerated movements on stage. Interestingly, many teachers incorporate such materials into their classes as "class demos."


Again, I find myself pondering, "Why on earth are they teaching us this nonsense?" Are they preparing their students for competitions? Do teachers understand what students truly need to enjoy dancing in a milonga? Has it ever crossed their minds that students also need to learn about proper etiquette on the dance floor, not just steps and figures?


❞...stopping steps that cannot be done in a milonga.❞ - Carlos Gavito


It's funny how the focus seems to be on impressing others rather than creating a pleasant experience for everyone. Tango is not just about showing off fancy moves; it's about connection, respect, and harmony with your partner and fellow dancers.


What do you think new students need to learn to enjoy dancing tango? Share your thoughts and experiences!


Video source: Source: Documentary, Tango Your Life, Chan Park, Director and Producer


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