Tango Argentino > What to do in a class where you're in over your head

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by Sunny Daye, Aug 12, 2007.

  1. newbie

    newbie Well-Known Member

    Originally Posted by Steve Pastor
    In AT you are more or less expected to dance an entire tanda with someone.
    This has nothing to do with AT. "

    This is this part of your post. I disagree with the opinion that dancing the entire tanda is an option. Having mate and empanadas at the milongas instead of beer and cheeseburger is a cultural option and you can copy it or not.
  2. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    I spied a man heading my way on Saturday night, when he stopped before me, I picked up my glass of wine, turned my head sharply to the left and made as if I had just seen somebody I knew. He got the message and walked away. Result. Friday night at Negrachas (one of the most "unforgiving" places in London and more so, because the wonderful Pablo Veron was in attendance), another gentleman was glaring over at me whilst I was seated, when he smiled and nodded and made to come over, I turned away. Result. Another gentleman who was seated (this time on Sunday at another venue) just glared at me across the room in an expression that resembled "stunned silence" (Over a year since we last saw each other and yes, we used to talk, dance and break bread but then he went off to BA, returned and I became an invisible). I casually looked over at him and away again. These men (others also who I haven't mentioned) are the same men that treated with me at worse: disdain or at best: total disregard when I was starting out. That memory is still fresh in the head and their disregard and disinterest was the incentive for me to practice, practice, practice and become good and then to learn and practice, practice, practice my lead for one who they once considered wasn't up to much scratch has now become mine.

    Never let it be in mind to forget where it was we once tread. Always remain in mind that situations in life is like dealing with your bank. Pay in large amounts and the return will be even bigger.
  3. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    I've been trying to catch your eye for some time now, but even on the highest local hillock, the distance and the earth's curvature is a bit of a problem:wink:
  4. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    First, newbie, your post with the bolding
    Originally Posted by Steve Pastor
    In AT you are more or less expected to dance an entire tanda with someone.
    This has nothing to do with AT. "

    makes it appear that I wrote that the tanda system has nothing to do with AT. In fact, Angel HI wrote the sentence you bolded, not me.

    Now, back to the subject of the tanda.
    People in Portland such as Robert Hauk and Alex Krebs love Argentine Tango and the culture that it is part of. They both see a connection between the dance and the culture, and endeavor to teach people not just the dance, but the music and the manners that they observed on their stays in Argentina.
    Other instructor / djs in this town are quite a bit less dedicated to this way of doing things, even to the point of not using cortinas, or having not their music organized into tandas.
    From reading this list, and at least one other, I know that the AT culture as imported from Buenos Aires is not always offered up along with the dance instruction. So be it.
    One thing that appeals to me, and I would argue to many others, is that fact that you get to participate in another culture when you step into a place like Alex's Tango Berretin, or Robert's milonga on Monday evening at the PPA.
    Now, I have decided that, because so many people don't treat the difference between a practica and a milonga seriously, I will only attend practicas. This is my way of respecting the tanda "rule". I have no desire to go around dumping partners after one or two dances when they are left feeling insulted. (My preferred method is to bring up something that is not working, and you aren't supposed to do that at a milonga, and you aren't supposed to "teach" at a milonga.)
    I am going to "say" that if you don't get some of the culture along with the dance, you aren't getting the full package. I would not go somewhere where people were dancing AT, and think that my partners expected me to dance only one dance with them. It is part of the culture of Argentine Tango. (But maybe not where you are.)
  5. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    Honey, I would eat you alive and dance you to death. Believe. :banana:
  6. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    that remains to be seen, at least on the latter. :twisted:
  7. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I was confused about this too...regardless of who said it.

    As I wrote in another thread about 15 minutes ago...I agree 110%.

  8. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    :confused: Heather, Re your post http://www.dance-forums.com/showpost.php?p=459804&postcount=62, your story brings up years of fears of the miradita game. My problem has always been that I can't see well enough to know what signal I was getting. Often resulted in the long walk back, or the cleverly disguised trip to the WC. :D
  9. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    Ha, ha, ha... The Green Mile trundle to the ever forgiving Water Closet. :D
  10. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Is it? :confused: Wow, I've missed all this predation...

    I've no experience of any equivalent AT scenes elsewhere to compare London too, but it doesn't seem as predatory as, say, the London salsa scene.

    Maybe London's a predatory town :)

    Yes, I've heard that too - but then, why don't they ask? :confused:

    (I know, I know, it's not the Tango Way :rolleyes: )
  11. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    OK, I'm now officially scared.
  12. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    Originally Posted by Heather2007 [​IMG]
    here in London the tango scene is predatorial. Even the Argentines are taken back.

    I was only there for a 3 week whirlwind, but found much of where I was teaching; Leeds, Manchester, not so much York or Edinburgh (Scot), and a couple of other places to be as well.

    Some ideas, why?
  13. kieronneedscake

    kieronneedscake New Member

    That rather depends on what you mean by predatorial. Are we talking socially, or in dancing terms?

    Small communities have problems with the number of excellent dancers being in very short supply. Then, pushiest or most tactical man wins and gets to dance with the best. However, London is not afflicted with that limitation, as I can think of at least 6 different schools.

    My experience of London is that it is the place I am most likely to feel like I don't exist, irrespective of how well I can dance, or how nicely I smile. There is of course the groupie effect too.
  14. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    Londoners bark at tourists/foreigners that push and heave their way through the underground, shop queue etc. or (gasp) avoid queuing altogether, but don't be fooled by all that traditional "polite", stiff upper lip "may I's", "sorry's", "I beg your pardon's. Londoners can be the pushiest and arrogant (and of course the grumpiest) of all and I guess this also translates in their social life. Many times I have had to quickly reign myself in, lose the impatient sigh and the stiletto sharp side glances, take a breath and "move on" already.
  15. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    Defiinition of predatorial: Sitting at a table with some girlfriends at a milonga on Saturday. The rather cutie chap who both I and my girlfriends were staring at and talking about eventually made his way over to our table. He held his hand out to the friend on my right, smiling she was about to take his hand when the friend on her right took his hand, stood up, flashed her hair, looked back, flashed her teeth and said, "sorry guys" and went off with him. Of course the chap was too polite to say, "well, er, actually" and I was too much in fits of laughter to sympathise. Similar was repeated when the flashing friend asked me to lead her to a milonga later on and when a guy stood by her and asked her to dance at the same her head did a Wimbledon type summing up and again, she flashed her teeth, this time at me, shrugged her shoulders in much the same way a guilty soccer player does when the ref. has caught him fouling the oppo, and said, "sorry". My reply to her was a rather loud "f**k you too" and laughed. And that is predatorial methods employed amongst friends, little the imagination needed then when it comes to mere acquaintances/strangers.

    And yes, of course, London is very cliquey and having lived in several cities across the globe, London is indeed one of the hardest to make friends and so perhaps such nature is also seen on the dancefloor. What do other Londoners feel? (Those that were born here that is and not migrants from the provinces...ha, ha, ha).
  16. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    Watch your tongue, gel. I was born in London, lived In Blackheath for ten years, have lived near Finsbury Park, Islington, worked in Chalk Farm, Baker Street, Farringdon, even if this was all before my tango days. Ahn yor from Sarf ov da rivva anyway so yer 'ardly a cockney sparrer are ya?? :wink:
  17. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    I've not enough experience of the AT social-dance scene in London to make a judgement.

    I've never really encountered such behaviour, but that's probably because I'm not a cutie :(
  18. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    Oi!! I grew up in Lewisham and more of a Londoner than you. All those dead posh peeps in their big swanky buildings overlooking the Heath. They're not Londoners.
  19. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Ahhh, Shhaaaaat itttt.... it's yer faaaaaaaaaaamily, innit?

    (yes, I've been watching Eastenders, sorry about that...)

    What was this thread about again?
  20. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    'ere, Liza Dolittle. That's inverted snobbery. I am neither posh nor wealthy. In fact I'm too eccentric to be pigeonholed into either provincial or cosmoplitan. Cor Blimey, Guvnor, strike a light! Me dear old mum was from Dagenham and she went to school with Dudley Moore,and so me grandad lived in Dagenham; and me uncle was a docker in the days when the docks was docks. And I wasn't too posh to have friends in Lewisham neither.

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