Tango Argentino > Height difference; avoid, open embrace, or some other strategy?

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by NZ_Guy, Feb 21, 2014.

  1. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    How do you lower your frame, then? Do you bend your knees instead?
    Bailamosdance likes this.
  2. pascal

    pascal Active Member

    I read this too, in some tango blog quoting a social female dancer from BsAs. "Don't bend, you make me look smaller than I already am" or something like that. You lower your hands.
  3. tangomaniac

    tangomaniac Active Member

    Lower your arms, NOT your torso. The knees should always be bent but you don't have to bend them more than usual.

    It's always easier for a man to lower her arms than for a woman to raise her arms.
    Mladenac likes this.
  4. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    OK, we have different definitions for what the frame is, (I include the chest as part of the frame). Lowering the arms, I agree with.
  5. Tango Distance

    Tango Distance Active Member

    How about recruiting women from women's basketball and volleyball teams to help deal with the height issue!

    Joking aside, it seems to me women in Tango tend to not be tall and tend to be thin, in contrast to what I have seen in Blues, Contra, and Salsa, where you see a number of tall and less thin women. Maybe it is the statistics of small numbers, or maybe it is something about Tango?
  6. Juniper Ivy

    Juniper Ivy Member

    In my area salsa dancers tend to be shorter than tango dancers. I dance salsa too and my height is never an issue over there.:shy: But in tango I often wish I were taller.
    Mladenac likes this.
  7. WildE

    WildE Member

    Only 2 gents and 1 male instructor asked me to dance all evening NYE. Yes I am 6'4" in flats, size 14/16 and a novice dancer yet I am not an odd footed, obese ogre. Left an hour before Cinderella strike of 12 and cried all the way home. I expected more gracious invites to dance at a large, studio dance. Being avoided and having ladies all around you get dances is a very painful experience. Felt like high school all over again.
    Juniper Ivy likes this.
  8. RiseNFall

    RiseNFall Well-Known Member

    There are many, many issues that contribute to not getting asked to dance much, particularly when people don't know you. I'm guessing that it was not dedicated to Argentine Tango, so this might not be the correct thread to discuss it in, but, yeah, feels like middle school. I just ask the guys to dance. :) Usually fine at a studio party, probably wouldn't be at an AT event. Particularly as a beginner don't ask the same guy repeatedly. You'll find many discussions of this in other threads, though off hand I don't remember the titles of them. Most guys appreciate being asked and I cross my the ones who clearly do not off my list.
  9. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    Why did you cry? OK, let's see, I am a petite size 4-6, have been dancing for years, and 3 tandas is an average I get in local milongas. Sometimes I get more, maybe, like 5. Sometimes it is just one.
    Never mind how many, it is always, always with someone I want and love to dance with, and I feel that I danced my best and gave it all. And it makes me very happy. It is not about quantity to me anymore.
    How many tandas would have made you happy?
  10. rain_dog

    rain_dog Active Member

    Oh come on, that's not the same situation at all, and you know it.

    You're an established dancer in your community who has fostered dance relationships with the partners you most enjoy dancing with. You've already rejected and weeded out the unmusical and maloderous, the grippers and grabbers, the clumsy and the boring. I'm sure if you wanted to, you could lower your standards and dance a lot more. You've made your choice (and btw, I'm not saying you are wrong at all for choosing as you do), but it is a *choice*.

    WildE, being a novice dancer and new to her community, does not have the luxury of being so choosy. (And I suspect she was at a ballroom social, so her 3 dances is the equivalent of 1 tanda). So how about a little empathy for someone starting out and feeling a little awkward and out of place?
    Juniper Ivy likes this.
  11. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    Rain Dog, all the points you made are totally valid, but I believe I did not manage to get my point through. Which was: a number of dances we get on a given night depends on many factors, most of which are utterly out of our control. So, if we set our dancing happiness on those numbers, we are doomed to have many unhappy nights.
    Expectations, especially those with numbers attached to them, will ruin it for you every time.
    Juniper Ivy and Mladenac like this.
  12. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    The problem is, if I wanted more, I would want more dancing, not more gripping and grabbing. So, no, it wouldn't quite work that way. :) Bottom line, I have to make do with what's available to me, just like any other person, old or new.
  13. WildE

    WildE Member

    Idn what a Tanda is and indeed I am a novice yet not a left footed dishrag. It was a NYE studio paid dance/event..seems only the people who knew one another danced together and I as a new face and extremely tall was overlooked despite my not being a wallflower...pardon the pun. One instructor I briefly danced with twice in a group mixer seemed to loathe me the pompus, young prick. Luckily one other of their 3-5 male instructors danced with me a couple times during the evening or I would never go back to that very big, popular studio. Those other gents scored an absolute zero for marketing and presentation. If I was their boss they would undergo additional hands on training how to welcome and impress a client prospect. That studio has about a 1% chance of receiving any of my private or group lesson business.
    Mladenac likes this.
  14. Tango Distance

    Tango Distance Active Member

    It was sad to read you left early and unhappy -- it is supposed to be fun. Random thoughts:
    • It might not be about height. Indeed I imagine many would be intrigued by a tall lady.
    • My "Not Touchy Feely" thread http://www.dance-forums.com/threads/not-touchy-feely.45840/ explains in great detail, short story is I still find it easier to ask people I know from class.
    • I have seen several times that new faces don't get a dance -- getting 3 actually might be a good start. For the record it has taken me a year, but I'm finally doing my part. If I see a newby or someone sitting I'll ask unless I run out of Tandas to do it.
    • I find it a sure-fire "yes" when I ask an instructor to dance -- they are competing for students.
    • You might rethink taking lessons at that studio. It is a great way to break the ice with people (and in your case introduce them to the charms of a tall lady). I think it improves your odds of getting asked at Milongas.
    • You'd think instructors would be the best at asking newbies, but that I have seen, one is really good at doing that, several others not so good. It's a small number of people, so I don't want to imply this is universally true.
    • Hate to say it, but it seems the 20-something ladies get asked a lot more than the 30+ year old ladies.
    • After age, more experienced ladies get asked more often.
    • A Tanda is a group of songs (3 in my area). You generally dance with the same person for all 3 songs.
    • Do you know about Mirada/Cabeceo? It's possible men were trying to ask you by looking and nodding but you don't know about that culture.
    Huge suggestion for you: Log in here, go to the Tango Argentino forum, and then click on the "views" link. This will sort the threads into order by the number of views. There are great threads on why ladies get asked to dance, why not, how to improve your odds, etc. I'd also suggest searching on "cabeceo" and reading threads on that. There are many other great threads. I often do this, as there is so much great knowledge here about Tango culture.
  15. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    I'm sorry you had a bad evening. Life isn't fair sometimes. At special events, festivals, etc., it can be difficult for someone new to get many dances. A lot of times at these big events, people tend to search out their favorite dancers that they only see at these special events. As you found out, a new women can wait a long time between tandas, and a new guy has to get used to lots of rejections before finding someone willing to take a chance on him.

    I'm not saying that's the way it should be, but unfortunately, that's the way it is sometimes.
  16. Juniper Ivy

    Juniper Ivy Member

    I am so sorry you had such a crappy New Years Eve. If it makes you feel better all I did was stay home and watch TV. And please know every follower occasionally has terrible evenings like this. Even worse. Sometimes a person may get no dances. Zero.

    But please don't give up on tango. You say you are a novice. It takes a while to get started with tango. Stick with it. Keep improving your dance skills. Work on developing friendly relationships with other dancers. Also read the threads in this forum that give advice on now to get dance invitations. Don't give up. I am sure your next milonga will be better.

    (Leads take note of this. How you can make such a positive difference in someone's evening just by asking her to dance.)
  17. Juniper Ivy

    Juniper Ivy Member

    Also I have to say that there are some tall men out there who will enjoy your height. Tango is a dance that looks good with tall dancers.
  18. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    A lot of "short" leaders enjoy dancing with taller women as well.
  19. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    I decided years ago that NYE was a bad time to go out as a single.
    I don't think I ever cried, but I do remember it being very unfulfilling.
    There's always another weekend / event coming up.
    Lilly_of_the_valley likes this.
  20. Wolfie

    Wolfie Member

    I have been having trouble establishing a solid connection with my shorter lead. His legs are significantly shorter than mine and when we try closed embrace everything feels very "off and odd". Even open embrace doesn't feel right. Tango is probably the one dance I know very little of and I have decided my biggest problem is establishing a connection, and this tends to affect me with taller leads as well. I get the points of contact and leading through the core but I have yet to have a dance where I can really feel what my lead is trying to get me to do. It has gotten to the point where I avoid dancing tango and will sometimes turn down a dance at a social if it is tango. I'm just not confident that I can do anything but walk and step on my partners feet and get in the way.
    On the flip side my partner loves tango and drags me through it but I just can't do it! I can't connect and feel it and am always behind the beat. Is this mostly an issue with my lead being short or my form just being "that bad"?

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