8CB - history

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#1
I have been revisiting the 8CB as people keep asking about it, and i have noticed something quite strange: It seems that some time in the 90's the 6-7-8 changed from a turn into a box (and example of the "old" (original?) 8cb: ) - the line from todaro (who afaik invented the salida (and it roughly matches how he starts his performances in the ones that i have seen on video)) to zotto is clear. copes looks very similar around that time, too, and while gavito presents something slightly different (and to me a bit more "milonga ready") as his 8CB, he also had a turn at the end. Completely aside from the 8CB's utility or not as the first thing that a lot of beginners get taught, does anybody have any idea who/why this turn got lost? One idea i had is that somebody wanted to be able to chain it - turning it from the "entrance"/ first sequence into an actual "basic step"? Did anybody witness that change?
 

LadyLeader

Active Member
#2
The change seems had happened here when I started learning tango 1998. At that time the Salida, 8cb was the mandatory start for learning tango with as mandatory back step start, both facing to the same direction and the box end.

Sometime during the first years the turning end was introduced as an option and it was VERY complicated to learn. :)

During the years the back step was dropped out and the followers turned their head to look backwards. The box end stayed. The Salida itself was dropped out as an awkward relikt from a dark past.
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#3
watching all the videos of todaro i can find i am more and more impressed with the 8cb as the first moves of a choreography - leader enters house right, followers enters house left, they meet in the middle of the stage, the backstep opens the space, and the 345 takes them accross the stage, and then the turn puts the follower into the spotlight after she was "behind" the leader before, and it sets up the couple for crossing the stage again.

Gavito does it differently: he drops the backstep, but instead of the pause a that gets taught for the 1 to make it fit into 8 beats he steps left on the 1, and then uses the 2 to shift his weight while maintaining the followers weight, so that his 34 are in the cross system, and then the 5 resolves that. After this he still does a turn for the 678, but instead of the todaros fwd, sideways curved walking turn he instead does a milonguero turn, i.e. the treats the 5 as the front step of the turn, and logically follows it up by leading a followers sidestep 6 and followers back-cross 7 around himself, which he then resolves at 8.

The currently evolving estilo mundial opening seems to be like a mix of the 2- what i see with a lot of the couples is something like this: a pause at 1 with an adornment, sidestep, an invisible weightshift without beat, walking to the cross in the cross system. Surprisingly many curve the walk to the cross towards the leaders right, so that the direction at the moment of the cross is towards the edge of the dancefloor, and then resolve the cross with a followers forward ocho, the opposite direction of the "old" turn. (I am speculating that this is a reaction to the fact that the mundial is danced in the line of dance. Stage performances tend to move clockwise (i think this is a consequence of the the open side of the embrace being generally where the more interesting stuff for the audience is happening, so presenting that side to the audience makes sense. Even social dancish performances at milongas often follow that logic - while the couple follow the line of dance they dance accross the dancefloor - i.e. when they are at the back length they perform for the front, and vice versa. So mundial performers are a bit at a loss, and once you look for it you can see how often they use turns and curves to either present the open side of the embrace to the edge, or work with an ocho-cortadoish framework so that the follower does interesting things towards the edge of the dancefloor. I am wondering if there will be a mundial version of the opening that starts with the couple having their weight towards the inside of the dancefloor so that the obligatory starting adornos are more visible to the audience/judges.)

another performance starting with the 8CB -

 

newbie

Well-Known Member
#4
Maybe it's because the 8CB became a teaching tool. The teachers like to make their pupils repeat ad nauseam a sequence. In the Zotto version of the video, you cannot restart immediately another 8CB, you need to navigate a little before the leader is back to LOD. With the box version, the teacher can teach a large group of sheep, I mean pupils, all he has to do is to count from 1 to 8 again and again.
 

dchester

Moderator
Staff member
#5
Gavito does it differently: he drops the backstep, but instead of the pause a that gets taught for the 1 to make it fit into 8 beats he steps left on the 1, and then uses the 2 to shift his weight while maintaining the followers weight, so that his 34 are in the cross system, and then the 5 resolves that. After this he still does a turn for the 678, but instead of the todaros fwd, sideways curved walking turn he instead does a milonguero turn, i.e. the treats the 5 as the front step of the turn, and logically follows it up by leading a followers sidestep 6 and followers back-cross 7 around himself, which he then resolves at 8.
Some call that the 8 count cross system basic, although the back step was included when I was taught it. I teach it as well, but not on the first class, but more typically on the third class, as part of the insturction on the cross.
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#6
Some call that the 8 count cross system basic, although the back step was included when I was taught it. .
If the back step is included is the weightshift to get into the cross system "between" counts? (i.e. 1 back, 2 side, 3 switch and forward outside partner ?)

Funnily i never really was taught the 8CB - what happened was at the last day of my first beginner series the (passionately nuevo in the way it was only possible for nuevo missionaries in 1999) teacher basically said "I am teaching what you need to actually dance tango, but if you go to workshops or other classes you are going to need this", and then proceeded to show the 8CB and how to count it. And sure enough, basically every class at the first festival i went to ran roughly like this "first we get to the 3 of the basic" "first we get to the 6 of the basic" "this figure starts at the 3 of the basic" - and i was deeply confused and basically had to figure out how to fake the 8cb in these workshops. I retroactively feel sorry for the followers.....
 
#7
In my class, the basic step is (1) right small step to the right, (2) left to the left, (3) right forward outside partner, (4) left forward, (5) right collect at cross and change weight, (6) left forward, (7) right to the right, (8) left collect.

It seems to me that the basic step is mostly a teaching tool. Even at my beginner level, I can already invent many variations on the sequence above: collect and weight change at 3 and continue in cross system, leader’s cross at 5, mordida at 6, etc etc etc.
 

dchester

Moderator
Staff member
#8
If the back step is included is the weightshift to get into the cross system "between" counts? (i.e. 1 back, 2 side, 3 switch and forward outside partner ?)
Yes (between). The counts stay with the follower's steps. However, as part of teaching it, we do variations on the timings (using quick beats at different places). That's why it isn't taught on day one.
 

opendoor

Well-Known Member
#10
Think Pugliese standardized the basic in the 80s. Perhaps his version succeded because he published an influential teacher training aid. The turn at the end is due to a codigo, to start dancing with your nose 45* LOD (in order to protect your girl from the crowd)
 
#11
I asked one of our the Spanish speaking dancers who is running a local radio program about tango. According to him it was Juan Carlos Copes who created the 8cb. He is going to have a whole program about the Salida in future and I suppose I will get the details then, in doubt now
(soon we are having all the names as Salida creator candidates . . . .)
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#12
Perhaps his version succeded because he published an influential teacher training aid.
What was that training aid? Do you know of a way to see it/get it?

I have not found a lot of his performances on youtube, either, but e.g. here he seems to open his dance with a straight walk to the cross:

(this seems to actually have been considered the standard salida - for example here we have (in the first 30 seconds) petroleo and pugliese teaching a linear, very canyengueish walk as the salida:


IAccording to him it was Juan Carlos Copes who created the 8cb.....soon we are having all the names as Salida creator candidates . . . .)
I am still somewhat partial to todaro - the 8cb as the entrance to a choreographed piece seems to my eye closer to his style than copes, but that is very much only a vague gut feeling. like for example here, i would assume that he would use the most opening for a choreography for a performance with a trained dancer with minimal tango experience:


(which is actually very similar to the salida pugliese uses - and gavito says that for him the real basic is the 345, which is the same thing)

Whereas here we have todaro students:



But then - to make it more complicated - this is also 1988, and here todaro is teaching based on a shortened 8cb - 125678:


(seeing this makes me sad that i never had a chance to see him teach - he seems to be a great teacher. (also interesting: todaro spends a lot of time following when teaching, and there is a female leader in the workshop - when you listen to people you sometimes get the impression that that would have been unthinkable back then (otoh, this is amsterdam))

And when copes is teaching he uses the 8cb with a 90 degree turn at the end:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1rvoCeS9FbU
 
#13
The short salida, 345, I have also come across it on Jorge Disparis workshops and when El Pibe Sarandi has been here.
Could the 8cb bee an development from this short one. I suppose that some kind of crosses has been done from the very beginning so the additional steps were attached to the 8cb to meet the musical requirements.
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#14
Could the 8cb bee an development from this short one. I suppose that some kind of crosses has been done from the very beginning so the additional steps were attached to the 8cb to meet the musical requirements.
That is an interesting idea - i have been digging through the oldest videos i can find because i was looking for the traces of the 8cb, and one of the things that i am noticing is that i feel that they used the cross much more, and in a slightly different way than we do today. There are a lot of turns and ochos and everything that is started from the cross, ending in a cross, having crossed steps in between. It almost feels like where we today think of a lot of moves as "ochos" they seems to think of them as crossess.

I will have to experiment with dancing a more cross based tango.
 
#15
Quite a lot of the early salong in my world was heading to a cross or starting from a cross.

I have been reviewing some of my earliest figures and noticed that I have nearly lost my skill of cw giros. I remember how easy they were compared to ccw ones at that time. Today it is much easier to run ccw giros!

Those early cw giros started from the cross and I wonder if my giros change the direction when I stopped to use the 8cb.
 

opendoor

Well-Known Member
#17
Think Pugliese standardized the basic..
..According to.. it was Juan Carlos Copes who created the 8cb..
Pugliese definitely invented the 8C-giro, aka molinete, according to Alberto Paz. But I could not find any evidence for my former thesis concerning the 8CB. Sorry for being wrong. So finially I think, Petroleo, as always, has been the offender. But being honest, I totally doubt that Copes could have invented the 8CB or could be involved in any sort of didactics, at all. I will meet Sebastián in august and surely will ask him.
 
#18
I was talking with a tango friend about the possibility of a crusada oriented tango and she replied that the term vals crusada maybe has something to do with that orientation in the past. What do you think?

Or how was the term vals crusada formed? What back ground has it?
 

JohnEm

Well-Known Member
#20
Vals cruzado means blended waltz, because it was first regarded a badly danced viennese waltz. I simply speak of vals porteño because its a regional style.
I can find no evidence to support this, sometimes it was called Vals Criollo reflecting its Viennese roots and its Porteño development. It also became known as Vals Cruzado, literally Waltz Crossed or Vals with Crosses. Now it's normally just Vals, not that any of this really matters except on a purely academic level. It is quite likely that the moneyed classes actually danced Viennese Waltz in their posh palace ballrooms (look up Palacio Paz) and they would have sneered at the throng who danced outside to the music of bandoneons and hand-turned street organs. They were worlds apart. As always, context matters and we don't really have any more than this.

Ascribing the origination of the 8 count basic, or any particular development/variation of it, is also pointless. It exists as a piece (or many pieces) of choreography which probably had an original purpose for stage dancing. Now regrettably it's still taught (usually badly), 30 plus years after the Tango Argentino touring show, and misused to teach new non-dancing recruits a form of the dance that was once a tool taught to stage performers who could already dance. The one good thing which has emerged in recent years is the emergence in public of variation, it doesn't matter who is/was responsible for any one development, what is surely more important is that none of its form is cast in stone.
 

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