Tango Argentino > Changing the embrace..pleasing or not?

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by Mario7, May 6, 2010.

  1. Mario7

    Mario7 Member

    I guess that age and culture have a lot to do with this but the question is: do you think that a changing of the embrace is more pleasing? This one for instance...in my opinion, this upright dancing embrace is the result of opening and closing during the dance..the lack of body cadencia (in my view) is also present. I'm guessing that a good lean and a close embrace would give the participants a more intense experience. What do you think? thanks

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  2. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    IMO, their dance quality (or lack thereof) has nothing to do with the choice of the embrace. Proof of the point: numerous couples who change the embrace during the dance, and show superb musicality, cadencia, intensity nonetheless. Among them: late Miguel Balmaseda, Julio Balmaseda and Corina De La Rosa, young Naveiras and their respective partners. Numerous videos on Youtube FYI.
  3. AndaBien

    AndaBien Well-Known Member

    My personal preference is to get into the embrace (apilado) and not let it break, ever. When it feels so good to dance in the close embrace, why dance any other way?

    However, I quite performing years ago. Now, I don't care if my audience enjoys my dancing or not, and that makes a big difference.

    My question is, what difference does it make to you? Are you dancing for your own benefit, or that of someone else? If you are auditioning for a part, then you need to dance according to the needs of the role. If you are dancing for yourself and your partner, then those are the only concerns you need to think about.

    Dance according to what you think works the best, and forget about what anybody else is doing.
  4. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member

    Well, for starters, I never really felt I got a clear idea of what cadencia is despite the long discussion of it in another thread. It's one of many things that keeps coming up, but we can't really get a consensus on what it is, and I decided not to worry about it anymore. I follow my leader.. hopefully if he has it, I won't screw it up for him. :).

    I'm also not clear on your question above... are you saying (A) you think these specific people would have a more intense experience by doing a different embrace? Or (B) that in general, participants of tango would have a more intense experience if they do something other than what is shown here?

    If its A, I don't think you can truly judge the level of intensity of someone else's experience, especially just by watching them in a video. Maybe they felt it was every bit as intense as they desired it to be.

    I think your experience watching them might be more intense if they did apilado, but that's based on your preferences. Someone else might have a less intense experience while watching them in apilado. I was thoroughly bored the first time I saw Tete' and Sylvia. A few years later, I was mesmerized.

    If you mean B, then the same holds true... people enjoy different things.. therefore how intense it feels to them depends a great deal on their own preferences for what they really love. For some, its big flowing nuevo in OE. For others, its simple small steps in apilado.

    For me, despite my love of AT and dedication to it, nothing beats the feeling of a big, sweeping Waltz... especially Viennese. :D ... (a well led AT vals will do, but I don't know many leaders who lead vals well.)

    Well, nothing beats waltz except flying around a rink on ice! I've had some amazingly sublime tango experiences, and danced with a couple of great leaders (like Omar Vega). But even they didn't come close to the way I feel skating full speed around the ice.

    So what creates more intensity for you, may not create it for someone else. Emotional responses aren't absolutes... they are as individual as we are.
  5. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Good job Dörte and Oliver !

    We started TA together and now they have already got so far. Just want to congratulate both dancers. And, isn´t it courageous to dance so normally and bravely in the line of dance under the eyes of a more over neo-orientated audience?
  6. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    Didn't much like it; embrace having nothing to do with it.
  7. JohnEm

    JohnEm Well-Known Member

    You're wasting bandwidth again. Unfortunately so did I, as I watched it.

    Why do you ask these questions? You know the answers, you've stated them.
    Seems to me you're just looking for affirmation rather as a child may need.
    You're just as likely to get a different answer from each poster on here
    which you must know by now.
    You have to make your own mind up and your own dance.

    I'm with Andabien in not breaking the embrace even though I've been taught
    the changing or dynamic embrace. The only downside is many followers
    want to change it for themselves largely because they aren't comfortable
    with or have never learned the following the chest with their chest embrace.

    As for body cadencia, that's whatever you want it to mean.
    Cadencia for me, bodily or otherwise, comes from the walk.
    Bending the legs, which he does, flattens the dance. Heel leading,
    which he does, ruins cadence and what the argentines call compas.
    If you want cadence you have to connect solidly with the floor,
    almost as if you're walking through it. And it takes practice. Lots.

    Overall though the dance just lacks dynamism and freedom.
    Somehow it's stilted. Brave though to perform like that. I wouldn't.
  8. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    This is quite poor dance.

    embrace transition are very poor, lady while performing cross does not step back with her right foot (masking lack of dissociation)

    In my group we dance better after 2 yrs of dancing.

    Upright position is caused by significant height difference.
    Especially by the leader cause he needs to lower his center i.e. similar step length.

    experience is caused by dancers mutual energy. It can be felt more in CE.
    But with some follower I don't like CE.
  9. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

  10. Mario7

    Mario7 Member

    The changing back and forth from open to close embrace would not feel good to me. I suppose that it is chosen for exhibition purposes. It also seems to force the embrace into a more upright posture. This is my own biggest problem with women partners. Everyone seems to be settling into an upright posture and it makes for a weak connection and less room for walking and turns. So, socially the dance is changing because of the performances and the forward lean is disappearing.... how would I get a woman to lean forward when she offers me an upright embrace? I don't want to go open because I just don't like it. So, I'm enjoying the dance less and less and seeing more and more of this sort of changing embrace. This particular dance has some pleasing moments mainly because of the beautiful music; that being said, the body cadencia seems to lack oomph (to me) this I assign to the lack of drive of the upright lead. The dance is changing (outside of BsAs) and I am liking it less and less. Tuesday night, I danced with a woman who has been dancing for years and I couldn't even do a heel to heel walk but had to tip toe forward due to lack of space..if she offers me an upright embrace, what can I do? Is there a way to tip her into leaning forward? It sounds like a situation I would rather avoid:sad::sad::confused: So, for me, I see no pluses at all but rather a disappearing species called potential dance partners.
  11. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

    Dude, did you ever stop to consider that maybe your partners don't want you leaning on them?
  12. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    The way you dance CE is quite difficult to for CE OE transitions.

    There are followers that are either beginners or they differently.
    We adjust to each other so we can enjoy dancing.

    If you want to have more dance partners learn OE and CE tango.
    If you cannot fight them, join them.
  13. Mario7

    Mario7 Member

    "Hi Mario,

    I understand your concern. In this case you are right and we opened the embrace for exhibition purpose. Up to now I was a more or less close-embrace-only dancer. But in the last months I enjoyed playing with a change in embrace, even though I must admit, that what we did in the performance was not the best version.
    I enjoy more freedom in open embrace and more possibilities of steps. And I think there is a way of maintaining the connection in open embrace, too. I think one can dance in open embrace and still have a very intimate and strong connection with ones partner.
    What we try to teach people is, that men and women have to come forward - lean - with their axis towards their partner, regardless if they are dancing close embrace or open. In both cases they have to come forward into a connection with their partner. And in both cases I would say this coming-forward has to be no more than to be able to stand without falling forward. If both partners agree, they can increase the degree of leaning in close embrace.
    But coming forward with your axis into a connection is necessary for both styles.

    As far as I understand this is more or less common sense in Tango throughout the barrios and different maestros. And many dancers open the embrace on occasion for special figures.

    What I think changes the way people dance, is the way tango-nuevo dancers organize their body and the communication within the couple. I see many young dancers standing completely IN their axis or even back - with bend knees - leading not with their (upper) body but only with their arms. That is a way of dancing that is without any pleasure to me, since there is no connection but the arms. It's like driving a horse-waggon...

    Take care.
  14. Subliminal

    Subliminal Well-Known Member

    That was nice of Oliver to reply. I agree, even in open weight is forward over the balls of the feet. I dunno about his slam against Nuevo dancers though. I think that's more of a difference between people who have actually been taught by a tango teacher, vs people who do whatever the heck they feel like and calling it tango nuevo. Or possibly people with a ballroom background who picked up a few AT moves. They would tend to be back weighted as well.
  15. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    In OE you stand on the full foot, in CE on the balls of your foot.

    Tango nuevo is more physically demanding than standard tango, playing with axis, boleos, contra boleos, ...
    And musicality is also more demanding.

    Dancing directly CE would be quite difficult.

    I practiced 4 months OE, 6 CE, than learning CE by practicing first OE.
    Now I combine OE and CE after 18 months.
    I do not perform many transitions, but will do over time.

    In Ballroom back weight is only visual, because partners need to have conjuction with their bodies (that is what is valued).
  16. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member

    I have the opposite perspective. ie: Leaders that haven't learned to make proper contact.

    I learned "milonguero" CE first and have no trouble at all following it. However, I open the embrace sometimes with a leader who is trying to dance CE but can't make a good enough connection for me to feel his lead in my body. This is probably most common when the guy collapses his chest and has his shoulders and head more projected than his ribcage. I can only project mine so far into his concave shape! :cool:

    I doubt this is what is happening to you, but sometimes when the follower opens the embrace with a leader, its not because she doesn't know what she's doing.. its because the leader isn't doing what she needs.
  17. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member

    I agree that a flexible embrace requires that you have little to no apilado. When I first started learning to dance with leaders who used changing embrace, I made the mistake of going back into too much lean every time we closed. It made it harder to open since I was not completely on my own balance. But I had learned to dance with lean first, and learning to dance CE without any lean was a new concept for me at the time. I had too separate in my mind (and bod) giving forward pressure and creating pressure by leaning.
  18. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

  19. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Hi Zoop, please excuse me, because what follows may sound a bit like in a knowing-it-all manner. We haven´t danced yet, but it would be much easier for me to demonstrate in your arms, than to stutter in your language. And anyway I still would call myself a beginner.

    But what you stated above is the core problem of so many ambitious apilado dancers (how much lean, in or out of balance, shared or not-shared axis, forward pressure...)

    Lean is AN illusion! To be a sophisticated apilado dancer you dare not dance "apilado" ! (And it was a stony way to get to this insight)

    I did it the wrong way (if you remember all my awakening stories posted here on DF). I first learned apilado, and dancing OE afterwards. But open is much more complicated than close and requires a lot more of body awareness and control! So many good followers find apilado awful. Why? So many leaders thinks they can dance this way (tango teachers inclusive), but so few actually do.
  20. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    Perhaps there is a language issue or something, but I've got to agree with Zoo on this one and wholly disagree with what you've written. You have contradicted everything that I've been taught about it.

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