Tango Argentino > AT Lessons: What are you working on?

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by DancePoet, Apr 18, 2006.

  1. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    we have practica (unofficial milonga), where we dance in pairs, our teachers are always present and we can always ask them for consult or for dance. :cool:
  2. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member


    advice for musical interpretation
    Listen to the music (either milonga, vals, tango, or some other), and try to isolate certain instrument and listen only that instrument.
    During that practice try to divide song in some patterns (by rhythm, melody, pause, whatever you hear)
    During the listening try to move your body as you wish (to connect listening to moving) i.e. feel the music.
    On melody you could slide with your finger on your leg or sth, hit rhythm with one hand, melody by other and play during that exercise.
    And later that kind of music interpretation transfer to dance.

    Body control movement:
    It is very important to move freely and voluntarily.
    When you move concentrate on your muscles, be aware of every muscle, joint, position of your body i.e. feel you your body.
    Later when you dance, you will feel your body, but aware of your partners body movements, and relation to your body .
    And more relaxed, body aware, and ladies can feel that and that combined with music interpertaion is mesmerizing.
    Also I recommend to practice body dissociation (upper/lower part and left/right part).
    And play with inner and outer pivoting on both legs. :cool:

    I also recommend that when learning new elements you go as slow as you could so you can completely control your movements, and later whatever piece of music come along you can easily adapt to the music.

    By doing these exercises your movements should be softer and better suited for the music.
  3. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member

    Good advice!

    Though the music thing isn't really a problem for me. I used to be a musician, and even before I was a dancer I could isolate different parts of a song. I usually only lose the music if I become too focused on other aspects of dancing. (Floorcraft, technique, posture, leading, etc.) I also "dance" in my head while I listen to music; on the way to work, wherever I can just sit and enjoy a song.

    The body technique ideas are definitely what I need to work on. Relaxing is hard. ;)
  4. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    When you start to really feel and control your body you will be able to concentrate on the floorcraft, music and the partner.
  5. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member

    Pretty good lesson today.

    Barridas: Worked on these a little bit. Feeling ok about them, but I need to work on relaxing my knee and ankle a little more before trying to start one.

    Milonga: Worked on the lead for milonga. We started on a new pattern, a step where the leader moves in double time, lightly touching the follower's foot while she steps in single time backwards. I had a really hard time with this one, not so much with the speed of the feet but making the lead clear. My teacher tried several different ways to tell me how I wasn't leading this step right, that I was restraining her movement. I didn't really get how to fix it, until something she said finally clicked. She told me my feet were doing the thinking. Though the step involved very quick footwork, I should imagine that my right arm is in charge of the operation. I started thinking about my right arm, and suddenly I realized how I was holding her back a little when I took a step forward, just by having tension in my arm. Oops. That explained her occasional look of panic like I was about to run her down. :eek:

    Outside Partner: Interestingly enough, we spent a good bit of time on the very simple step of going outside partner, ye old Step #3 of the 8CB. My teacher informed me that I was far enough along to really start focusing on the details. We worked on making it feel smooth and comfortable. Imagining I'm encircling or twining about my partner, disassociating the chest and sliding the foot around closely in an arc rather than stepping sharply outside. And to accentuate the music, when landing the step rising (!) softly, motion synchronized with the note of the song. A lot of detail and things to think about for one lil' step. :shock:
  6. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member

    New goal:

    Sacadas without looking down even once. Or anyone dying.

    Quote of the evening:

    *a girl half my size grunts and strains, trying to push my foot over*
    "Ummmm... what are you doing?"
    "You need to soften your foot!"
    "I was, uh, leading a parada, not a barrida."
    *she sheepishly stops fighting the direction I'm leading her and steps over*

    (We were practicing switching between the two in the turn, so I'm sure it got a little confusing at points. That one was totally not my fault though. :D )
  7. bafonso

    bafonso New Member

    back sacadas!
  8. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member

    So I took a group lesson last week with a visiting Argentine couple. At one point, they were talking about making the most out of every movement, especially during romantic slow tangos. So they tell us to watch them, they are going to show us the next step to work on. They started moving... so slowly, and so perfectly with the music. All the students were just staring wide-eyed. When they finished, the male teacher said with a twinkle in his eye, "There, simple, yes? Everyone here should be able to do that." We all kind of looked around at each other. Finally someone asked, "Could you show it again? What step was that?" And the twinkle in the teacher's eye got a little bigger as he replied, "What, you don't remember Ocho Cortado?"

    So next goal: Concentrate on making the simplest steps feel amazing.
  9. Ampster

    Ampster Active Member

  10. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member

    It's funny, I read your blog months ago, and I thought I got it. But after re-reading it again just now, it means a whole lot more. Guess I needed a visual example for it to click. :D
  11. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    I try to move as much as to the melody, music.

    I danced this weekend to slow music, it was difficult, but wonderful
  12. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    Managing distance in open embrace (using sacadas)...again.

    Maintaining even and strong connection in close embrace (giros, especially)...again.

    Boleos, and how the movement originates at the bottom of the ribcate...again.

    Using the floor to gain speed (corridas)...again.

    Maintaining balance (ochos and other pivoting things)...again. Minor breakthrough on this front--sink some more weight into the hip of the standing leg, particularly at the end of the pivot right before the next step, as sort of an oppositional movement and that extra bit of settling weight and finding axis.

    Ahhh... It's been so long since I've had a lesson. After this past weekend it was exactly what I needed. Feel so relaxed, my head is in a better place, my back feels so much better than it has in a good while. I needed this lesson. (I wouldn't have cared if we didn't realy work on anything at all, just for the chance to feel like this after.)
  13. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    Peaches, love the post. :) You're great.
  14. New in NY

    New in NY New Member

    First lesson in two months (!)
    Back to working on keeping the upper body in the close embrace while moving from the hips, and musicality. I was afraid it would be a total disaster after so much time without lessons, but it all came back together. Mi maestra is a miracle worker!
  15. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member


    I like the music. But it showed me just how much my turns stink. I can never find a good exit. I think I might just need to come up with a system for where to come out of the turn and decide before I lead it. I can't improvise an ending that fast, and that's what I've been trying to do... "Oh, here feels like a good place in the music to giro. OH CRAP where do I stop?"
  16. bafonso

    bafonso New Member

    The same way you stop walking.
  17. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member


    Turns out I don't need anything else.
  18. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    The two easiest place to come out are on either on the front step, or the side step after the front step (although with practice, you can come out on any of the steps). A good drill is to do ochos, and then go into the mollinete, and then come out into ochos again. Vary the combinations between using front and back ochos when you do this drill.
  19. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    boleos.. not a comment on your post but a nice way to end a molinete backstep and go off in a different direction
  20. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member

    LOL. I want to reach back 24 hours and slap myself. Took a major ego battering today. One lesson with Graciela, and I feel like I've started all over again from the beginning. I think it helped though. Some things are going to take some getting used to. Like completely changing my walk. The biggest thing was my toe-first steps felt forced and unnatural to her. She told me to step heel-toe from now on, that it was a much better feel for me. That's going to be a hard habit to change.

    To be fair, some things feel way better, and I did notice a difference right away. My lead for front/back ochos feels so much more solid, and I feel connected all the way through them.

    Also, thanks for the molinette tips guys.

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