Tango Argentino > Who invented projecting?

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by opendoor, Nov 10, 2013.

  1. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Being asked "where did you get that from?" I have to shrug my shoulders frequently. Leg or step projection is an well-stablished and a well-known leading concept. But actually who invented that thingy? I´ve learned from stage and nuevo dancers. Neither of them followed this concept. The first got something like "sink or swim", the latter got the concept of "active following" instead. Also most ballroom-ies I´ve asked never have heard of this concept, too. So finally I suspect Susana Miller.

    Can you help me? Do you know quotable sources or at least an author´s name?
  2. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

  3. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    I've never heard the term used when talking about leader's technique, but I have heard it used when referring to follower's technique (pretty much like your second link).
  4. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    I mean the entire phenomenon, in your perception it would be kind of a double-projection: from the leader to the follower and further from the follower to her limbs. If you would limit the projection only to the second part of transmission, something like intentional move would be clear enough. But I´m interested in the body concept (and it´s originators) on either side of the process.
  5. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    We give the free leg to the leader by stretching it from the core with the psoas muscle (see drawing below) in the direction indicated.

    I can't see their arrow, but I kinda feel their wording isn't as "precise" as it should be, since muscles can only contract.

    "David Johnson and I have been scheming to get tango out of the clichés."

    And there you have it. The new cliché of projecting.
  6. brunoalfirevic

    brunoalfirevic New Member

    I read that some time ago and I have no idea what it means. Per Wikipedia, psoas major acts as a hip flexor and external rotator. I think it also aids in trunk rotation. But I don't see how it can be the key muscle when projecting backwards (you glutes are the prime mover in that case). It is probably still activated to keep the hip externally rotated a bit and to stabilize things, but that should be it.
  7. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    Somehow I ended up finding this bit from Skippy Blair.

    "All dance movement should project from your center.
    There’s an old saying in dance, “Foot follows Frame.” “Centering” also refers to the center of your frame. Move your center first—not shoulders, hip or foot."

    This one is in an article with the first (of several) copyright dates of 1992.

    "The "Sending Foot" presses down and BACK, in order to propel the body forward. The "Receiving Foot" accepts the weight transfer and immediately starts "pressing" - as it becomes the next "Sending Foot". The important part here is to identify what is being SENT and what is being RECEIVED. It is the "CPB". It is located in the SOLAR PLEXUS and is about the size of a fist. When the “Center Point of Balance” is tightened - and projected - it carries the whole body with it - in one connected piece."

    Can't say for sure this the the origin of the "projecting" bit, but I've seen people pick up on things they've heard or read, and regugitate in in any number of ways; sometimes pretty much mangling it.
  8. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Don´t know where you´ve got that from, but it´s a contraction per se: a foot never can be a center. Secondly, projecting actually means, that the foot moves first and the center finally in the last moment. The center-move (a term we use in taiji, too) comes with the weight-change.
    bordertangoman likes this.
  9. Lui

    Lui Active Member

    I’m all with Steve and Skippy Blair.

    If you move your foot before your center, and therefore before the lead, you will hit the woman’s foot.

    The whole idea of tango seemed to me: Initiate the movement with the torso, than the foot follows. It overtakes the center to be ready to finally receive the weight. It usually goes along the commandment “Get the woman out of the way first”.

    I never heard the term “projecting” in real life, but most of my teachers never named all techniques they taught and used. Those ideas where “discussed” in the context of music, feeling and the desired result on the dance floor by doing it in different constellations.

    I assumed “projecting” referred to the idea of sending out a foot with a short and sharp impulse from the torso, but to refrain from placing the weight on it. This was taught to me in depth by Marta Anton and Manolo Salvador for uses in Milonga (the dance). While Manolo took great pride in the elements he created and assembled to define his style, he never claimed originality to this technique. Therefore it probably predates him and most likely tango itself. Whoever came up with this concept first will be long dead by now.
  10. vit

    vit Active Member

    I checked those articles and a part connected with "projecting" doesn't look much different than in ballroom to me. In ballroom, followers are also trying to stretch the moving leg when doing backward step (at competitive level I mean) and lower on the knee of supporting leg, to maximize the length of those steps (which in typical ballroom hold isn't that easy for the lady - usage of many core muscles needed + flexibility of the core, to avoid lady looking 'broken' at the waist). Now, how long the leg is stretched before started taking weight depends on the speed of the steps and genre/style, so it's usually considerably shorter than in those AT clips, but principle doesn't look much different to me. Just that in ballroom, they don't use the word "projecting", but they simply say to followers to stretch the legs when stepping back before stepping. However, you won't see this in ballroom at social level
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2013
  11. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    ..but I doubt that he called it "proyección", or did he?
  12. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    ...but leg extension, by chance?
  13. vit

    vit Active Member

    I actually can't remember that they used some specific word except telling the ladies to stretch the leg when stepping back.
    Did I actually get the point of that concept named "projecting" or it means something different to you as I'm not AT dancer (it's however in my future plans)
  14. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    More important than "stretching" the leg backwards is moving the leg from the hip, rather than from the knee, which is what most people do unless they've been given direction. This moves the knee back and prevents "knee knocking" as the man steps forward. What people were told in the class I went to last week, was to NOT stretch and take a big step backwards.

    The term "project" has never been in the vocalubary of these, and other, instructors I've taken lessons from as far as I can remember.
    vit likes this.
  15. A.Victor

    A.Victor Member

    I came here from another thread and I feel I must add to the confusion :) by saying that when you do a step and you leave the other leg behind and completely stretched (as an example, it would form a line with your body when stepping forward), that's what my trainer calls "projection". He says it creates an image of elegance and style.
  16. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    That is an aspect of projection, of course. But for smooth walking the attention lies on the projection of the front leg.
  17. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    This says something about your trainer.
  18. A.Victor

    A.Victor Member

    What exactly?
  19. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    I have in front of me a 1942 edition Arthur Murray's "How to Become a Good Dancer." You might think that Murray would be irrelevant to AT, but somethmes it's scarey how alike ballroom and AT are.

    There are 10 pages on the "simple" act of walking. there are 5 items following "When you dance:" the second item reads "Learning to step backwards poperly not only teaches the Girl how to keep her feet out of her partner's way - but it will also improve her appearance on the dance floor."

    So, here it sounds like we are concerned about how the man looks when walking forward.

    When dancing, or learning, Argentine Tango as a social dance, the emphasis is usually on the music (hopefully, but who am I kidding), your partner, and interacting with the other people on the floor.

    'How you look' is usually one of the last things you think about.
    While this is certainly not true everywhere, I merely note that your teacher talked about this.
    sixela likes this.

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