Tango Argentino > ABC's Definition of Tango

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by Me, Aug 19, 2007.

  1. madmaximus

    madmaximus Well-Known Member

    Formal Gala/Benefit. Dancing. AfterParty. Champagne Darts. Russian lady with higher tolerance for Vodka and Scotch.

    In that order.

    (Still puzzled where a thin-as-rails woman can put all that alcohol...)


  2. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    There's an "away" that creates the big top look, but it's done by supporting yourself in that position, not by leaning away. Actually leaning away would be quite impractical.
  3. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    ahem...those of us with russian stock have very accomplished livers for vodka in particular
  4. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    I will say it for 'Me' and, I'm sure, many of us, thank you for joining this thread. Your posts have been spot on.

    Nothing can be further from the truth. The truth, and original point, is that BR tango, amer and intern, and the argentine all share a common bloodline...tango. If we are confused and having to discuss it to such length, consider what a trite descriptive could/would do to 5 million viewers. All that was asked for was a better clarification.

    AH! There's the Chris that we know. Where've you been? Glad you're back.

    Incredible post. Merci bien.
  5. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    Just a few more historical facts( note - I did not say HISTERICAL ;) )

    Some excellent biblio. posted, but here are a few things that could be added.

    In the first Championship event ( 1919 ) Tango was introduced .

    The first Champs. were held in Paris in 1909, but Tango was not included in the groupings. The first solo dance of Tango at comp.was held in 1913, and was won by Bernabe Simarra and Maria la bella from B/ A .

    The first time a Tango danced in comp. with a staccato action, was at the
    British amat. champs. in 1936, by a couple from Germany--Freddie Camp and
    A. Pasqual .
    From that modest beginning, Henry Jacques, revised the concept, to what we essentially dance today ( Scrivener being another major influence ) .

    In 1920, the steps in Tango were codified-- Paseo-- Corte-- March Argentine-- Carre and Huit.

    Its interesting to note, that " Tea dances " were being held in London as early on as 1910, when Tango was played for dancing .( Habenera rhythm )
  6. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    very glam for mid-week. impressive...
  7. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

    Maybe it was a long after-party. Or a long recovery.
  8. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    That still doesn't give a postulated history of ballroom tango characteristics not present in the AT community's idea of "argentine tango" any relevance to their tango.

    Which is a seperate question from the plausability of that postulated history for those characteristics.

    It may or (or perhaps more likely) may not be accurate, but it still doesn't have anything to do with your dances.
  9. Me

    Me New Member


    Your reply to AngelHI about AT dancers believing ballroom characteristics are not present within AT is significantly incorrect. This is not the first time you have said this and been told, with much scholarship to back it up, that you are wrong.
  10. Me

    Me New Member

    This was very interesting. Thank you. :)
  11. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member


    So sharply ending compact movements, very grounded posture, big presented topline - these are characteristics of AT???

    They sound to me more like the ways in which the AT crowd complains that ballroom tango goes wrong.

    Or to put it another way, what is your complaint with the ABC web page? It is after all a commentary on ballrom tango that is more than 90% accurate as to its subject of ballroom tango...
  12. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    On another subject, an actual question:

    Is the characteristic leftwards curve of repeated walks (or more technically, placement of left foot walks into CBMP and right foot walks to extend that line) inherited from tango history, or is it a ballroom idea?
  13. Me

    Me New Member

    Now you are mixing the social dance with the performing dance. Those are affectations of dancesport, and generally should be reserved for performance and competition. AT stage tango (fantasia) does at times present these elements as well.
  14. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    Actually they are not. They are elements of modern ballroom tango, period.

    Certainly as in all other elements they are greatly maginified in competition, but they are fundamental elements of the dance present present in proper proportion to the other elements, in any setting where it is done well.

    Even if I were to accept your mistaken belief that these are elements reserved for competition, then their presentation and alleged history on the ABC web page would clearly be applicable only to competition ballroom tango, and still irrelevant to AT.

    And didn't someone just say that the AT community sometimes gives that a funny look, too?
  15. Gssh

    Gssh Well-Known Member

    This is really interesting! Thank you.

  16. Me

    Me New Member


    You keep sliding around here. You mentioned topline, grounded movement, and sharp movements as though they were special to non-Argentine tango. When I pointed out that you seemed to be discussing the difference between social dance and performance dynamics, you then began discussing general proper dance technique.

    Which one is it?
  17. saludas

    saludas New Member

    Social dance has to incorporate technique to get beyone the shuffle-and-push of beginner social dance. Topline, grounded movement, etc are actually basic elements of all dance instruction.

    Re: 'my dance is sacred and only a true believer understands it' - all dance is composed of the same elements and the difference is expression and techniqe application; beginner social AT looks just like beginner American Foxtrot, and it does so until dance technique is used - not until a history lesson is absorbed. You do NOT have to 'understand' the history of the foxtrot to dance it; the best dancers in any area of dance are not the most 'knowledgeable' when it comes to the past. Also, I submit that altho the 'mystique' of learning AT can be seductive, it does mask the truth - anyone can dance it, and only dancers with good technique do it well.
  18. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    They are applicable to the ballroom idea of tango but not necessarily applicable or even tolerated in other ideas of tango. Within ballroom, they are generally applicable and not reserved for competition, though the better fraction of competitors may be the only readily visible place where you can see a clear understanding of them - really skilled social ballroom is not a widely practiced thing, as so many of the better dancers have drifted either towards competition or towards other non-ballroom partner dance specialties.

    All ballroom instruction. And somewhere between foreign and grossly innaporpriate to some of the other partner dances.
  19. Gssh

    Gssh Well-Known Member

    I don't know anything about the history of BR tango, but from what i have seen in photos of early tango dances in europe these are developments that happened after BR tango became its own distinct style.

    Do we have somebody with a knowledge in BR history (tangotime?) who has knows about the development of the characteristics of BR tango? (btw, thanks again for the info above - i was especially impressed that we actually know when and by whom the staccato movements were introduced in BR style.)

    Ignore the complaints in the vein of "my kung fu is better than your kung fu" -thats just a bad tango habit - you should see what happens when apilado and nuevo dancers meet (especially on the dancefloor, when the dancefloor is just crowded enough that the apilado dancers start dancing really, really small and the nuevo dancers figure that if they just do some zig-zagging and judicious timing they can still fit in backwards saccadas that transition into head high boleos that transition into chained enganches ;) ).

    I think nobody disputes the features of the BR style (well, we don't dispute it more than apilado style, salon style, nuevo style, fantasia style, or whatever else we don't dance/like to dance).

    What is in dispute is the historic provenance of these features, and the question if the anectdotal history of these features presented in the ABC blurb holds up to what we know (think we know?) about the history of the different styles.

  20. Gssh

    Gssh Well-Known Member

    If you have time could you post a desciption of these steps (maybe a new thread?) ? I have no BR training, so the names don't say much for me, but i am very interested in knowing what exactly they danced as tango in the 1920's .


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