Workshops in NYC    Nov 2017

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8 classes of one & half hour each


The 8 classes will be given during 4 days (two weekends):

- 2 classes on Saturday 18th

- 2 classes on Sunday 19th

- 2 classes on Saturday 25th
- 2 classes on Sunday 26th


each day the 2 classes will be given
2:00 to 3:30 pm & from 4:00 to 5:30 pm
except Sunday 26th that will be
1:00 to 2:30 pm
and 3:00 to 4:30 pm






From the total of 8 classes, there will be 4 classes for intermediate and 4 classes for advanced dancers.


Despite the level of the class, we don't require a particular level to participate. We think that, even for beginners, it is an opportunity to learn, and a valuable experience.


Anyway, the material of these classes, should be useful for dancers of all levels, including those who are involved in teaching, as it goes through structural development and coordination issues.




In Couples


The maximum number of participants will be 60 people, that is, 30 couples. 


Partner is not required. But we recommend that you come with a partner to insure that you have the opportunity to practice the material during the entire class.  You are permitted to come to the class without a partner, but it is not common that you will find a partner to work with.


Anyway we will propose rotation for those who wish to. We are going to be often changing partners in order to better develop your skill in leading and following. This "partner change" will be done in a very systematic way, that won't disturb the regular practice of established couples, and will give the opportunity for those who wish to, to try the learned material with someone else having a little fun for a while


"Looking for Partner" List   for those who have no partner








Description of the workshops


1     True Tango Walk

The walk of the tango is the main support which sustains the natural attitude and the serenity of the dancers. The domain of the walk gives the dancers a great range of possibilities because the main problem of the "basic harmonious movement" is solved. The dancers of the old generation already said without further deepening but looking beyond the wisdom of experience: “learning to dance the tango is learning to walk”.

We’ll work this time on the particular way we use the feet to complete the step, clarifying it for each position of a sequence. Ornaments are also important, and even when sometimes are very tricky, we’ll include some we consider functional to the walk. Of course we’ll analyze its shape and dynamic.

As a main subject for this class, we'll use sequences where the man walks alternatively at both sides of the woman, observing how each side affects the embrace.

Then, we’ll work on the possible combinations, the technique of the tread, and the adjustment in time and space with the partner. We’ll insist on the details, and give regular practice exercises which we believe will help very much. It is good to remember that when feet attack the floor in the correct way the whole image is highly improved. We could even say: the tango dancer appears !



2    Non Stop Turning

The Turns structure is essential in understanding the functioning of the tango, and it is present in virtually any combination of rotation. Their knowledge is essential to resolve with ease any situation that arose in improvisation. Also the technique for its realization is very important, especially in women holding pace, tread and weight transfer in a particular way.

We'll thoroughly work on all those details, paying attention to the speed. We will see that the speed is intrinsically related to the rhythmic structure. Dominating the pace we dominate the speed, but also comparing speeds we better understand the structure.

Another typical problem of the turns is the difficulty of controlling the front towards the turn ends. It is quite common to begin a turn assuming this eventually take us in a certain direction and it turns out were exactly the opposite of what we expected ... We must understand that the rotation is "essentially" a change of front, so we will study how to  control this problem better and in our convenience.

Finally we will see the usefulness of learning to spin without stopping.



3   Double Boleos combined

Sometimes when the creativity of a dancing couple gets the magic, it is usually due to the achievement of a compact, powerful, defined figure, which is normally the result of a "combination" of movements. It is likely that the couple regularly performs these movements separately, reaffirming them and making them their own, although without much significance. But the magic occurs suddenly when bringing together these movements in that particular combination...

After a long journey we know today of combinations of movements that go perfectly well together, and that are highly effective in the legs of any dance partner that decides to conduct practice responsibly. The use of double boleo is very common in these combinations. Sometimes as a pitcher of a figure and other times as a coronation. Sometimes fast and sharp and sometimes soft and melodious. We will see different variants comparing rhythmic differences, speed, texture, dynamics etc.



4    Turn Split combined

La "Soltada" (Split) is a figure who has always been considered a "figure of spectacle". It consists of the rupture of the traditional embrace, so that the dancers release from each other for a few seconds, to return to the embrace and continue. The "soltada" has been used a lot in choreography by placing it just before the final pose to reinforce it. Now, while the release was exclusively a stage figure had all the connotations of the professional world where everything that is done is agreed beforehand. As we all know, in the last years the dancers, through a deep analysis, have managed to bring to light the "structure" of tango, its "system", its "functioning". And we found that the "soltada", which apparently was only possible in choreography previously agreed, is contained in the structure, in the system ie works as any other step, and therefore can be perfectly improvised. We will analyze in this class the "functioning" of the figure comparing different variants, which will allow us to add more fantasy to our repertoire of improvisation.



5    Rhythmical Precision

Maybe it's the sharpness of rhythm, the outstanding characteristic of tango music... Historically dancers have known how to imprint to movement the so typical outburst that is accomplished in a sudden stop, and also the definition established by the power contained in a foot that is arriving decided to ground. Perhaps this movement quality was caused in large part by the rhythmic thrust of tango. Who hasn’t noticed that percussive "fury” coming out from the bandoneons in those D'Arienzo recordings of the 40s, for example ... Well, why not add to our ability to respond to rhythmic drive, knowledge of possibilities...? That is what we will do in this class, studying rhythmic possibilities. We’ll practice movements but also train the "listening”; there is a lot to discover… we’ll try to put the emphasis on the precision, because we know that many times we dance "overall pace" but without the fine tuning which gives musicality to a movement. We’ll study how to do the effort of moving, in order to arrive just with the accent.



6   Forward & Backward “Ganchos”

The "ganchos", one of the figures par excellence of the Argentine Tango, have undergone great changes in the last years, thanks to the enriching contribution of the new generations of dancers. We will study them in detail in their structure, concept and technique. And we will see that we can perfectly categorize them from the structural point of view in front, back and side ganchos, where the "side" ones are the most common, since they are the easiest to be accessed even for beginner dancers. So we will restrict this class to the other two categories: the hooks in front and back, that is to say the "difficult"ones, which will not be so much when you understand a series of details to take into account at the time of its execution.
Today we find here and there some "pseudo-milongueros" (understood by this word: beginner of old age with the irrepressible desire to be authority) presenting themselves as staunch enemies of the ganchos ... Go to them this reflection:
"Given in the tango the inescapable exposure of the Man-Woman relationship, the algidity, the excellence, the explosion and the catharsis of the ganchos, give the tango an incomparable splendor. For many people, that reached splendor at the moment of the gancho, represents a metaphor (even an unconscious metaphor) of their own experience in that man-woman relationship. Perhaps "denying" the ganchos is the result of a fear that that relationship brings us, and perhaps instead of denying them would be better to learn them, to overcome that fear ... "



7   Closed Embrace: the "magic" of the open step

For a long time there have been discussions about the nature of the "milonguero" style. Too often this discussion has gone to statements such as: "the true milonguero is the one that dances with feeling." While it is true that in this form of dance there is an emotional side surely the great responsible for the success of the style, it is also true that there is a technique that explains how to get this image.

We propose it because we truly believe it's worth learning to dance keeping close embrace, ie not to change it with the development of the movement. We’ll study a number of technical problems that arise when both dancers are placed so near. Of course, being so close reduces the available space for movement, this makes everything more difficult. But in return, it also increases concentration and therefore improves fine perception.

Let's study in this class, how are the "openings" of women in the milonguero style, direction, system, relationship with the hip, etc. We will see the convenience of learning how to mark (lead) "series" of openings, even from the rhythmic point of view.

Okay, we talk about openings, rhythm, system, directions, etc., it's the technique and nobody doubts its importance ... but in the case of closed embrace, we should not lose sight of that, as a concept of dance, it is much more transcendent than a simple set of technical resources. We will try to carefully explore this too.



8    “Colgadas”: directions, rebounds & walk timing

The “Colgadas” (off-axis situation of women out of men) are very dynamic figures that always involve a high level of action and also a sense of risk. And even when it is apparently very difficult to overcome that sense of risk, the knowledge of the launched structure and the execution technique allow control.

Turning direction, hip bounce, and walking pace are crucial in this technique, so we will pay attention to these problems. The colgadas are difficult, it is true and also require a certain physical response ..., but the feeling of "flight" you have when you achieve them, is priceless ...



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Revised: 2017-07-15 .



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