Are they really dancing tango in this video?

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#21
I am usually a huge fan of Gssh's post, but I have to pause on this one.
Thats a bad sign :(.

This was intended to be mostly tongue-in-cheek. I am a big fan of traditional tango music - actually i tend to not dance to most alternative tango because it lacks the multi-layeredness needed to make it interesting for me as a leader. And people who treat the music as little more than a metronome are in my opinion not really dancing. But - and this is a big but - for me tango exists in the way the music and the dance combine to a whole. I would have wholeheartedly agreed with the OP just for the written work, but i found the examples chosen jarring - i mean, the denver tango festival? el pulpo? Denver is quite serious in trying to be about good, traditional tango, and from his workshops i get the impression that el pulpo is quite aware and able in the traditional style - while i dance almost none of the vocabulary he presented there i learned a lot of things that have informed my tango since then. This might be aggravated by the fact that i read this at work - i.e. i have no sound. I have seen a whole lot of dancign that was a whole lot less tango.
So i was trying to present a mirror of how i percieved the post - a perfectly reasonable - if a tad overly polemic - argument paired with a video that undermines the main message. I actually really believe (if not quite that rabidly) that tango without the music is quite pointless - and one of my goals has always been that i hope my dancing would passess the "no sound" test - if somebody watched me dance without sound like i do, they should have at least some idea of what the song was like, and think that i do dance tango.

Gssh
 

Peaches

Well-Known Member
#22
I came across this video shot during the recent Denver festival. It's a festival that has focused on "close embrace" tango. However, they aren't dancing to tango music in this video.

I had no idea what kind of music was played at "alternative" music dances until I saw this one. I was stunned by the fact that dancers would even consider moving together to a French song on guitar that has no strict tempo or danceable rhythm.

I don't feel this can be described as tango since the music isn't tango.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjSEmGf7r6c&feature=related

Would anyone else want to dance tango to this? Do the dancers appear to be enjoying themselves?

This video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OplUFeukicY&NR=1 has to be the worst example of a tango teacher dancing to other music and calling it tango. Tango is an embrace; he has none with his partner. Perhaps that is one reason she has found another.


Buenos Aires has a young swing dance community who are very interested in learning Lindy Hop, Balboa, Jazz. They use authentic music from the USA for dancing and hire local jazz bands to play for their dances. They dance to the music that originated the dances.
Why bother asking if you've already formed your opinion?

Sure. It's tango. Who cares? I'm sure they consider themselves to be dancing tango. It's got AT embrace, it's got the general everything of the dance--if you listen to it with the music off, you'd never know it was anything other than traditional AT. Hell, they even have the lights up, like they're "supposed" to be doing. Waddaya know!

Edit to add: Love the second video. Yeah, I'd even call it tango. Good music, a challenge of a dance, and just fun. I like my dances fun, and I love to laugh when I dance. Sometimes.
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#24
I guess that is the risk of trying to be funny in a written medium - no body language to make clear that one is fooling around.

Apologies to anybody that might have taken offense.

Gssh
 
#25
I always assume people who are being outrageous are trying to be funny, but even being English (ie programmed to assume people are winding you up) I cant always tell the difference... :)
 
#32
Okay, just because the music is not a traditional tango, does not mean that you can't dance tango to it. So many people feel that they can't dance a certain dance unless they're doing it to the traditional music of the dance. These two are doing a tango, it's just to rock n' roll music. I think they do look like they are enjoying themselves. Most dances are danced in 2/4 or 4/4 timing so you are actually able to dance most dances to most types of music. I wish more people would have a better understanding of this.
 
#33
Okay, just because the music is not a traditional tango, does not mean that you can't dance tango to it. So many people feel that they can't dance a certain dance unless they're doing it to the traditional music of the dance. These two are doing a tango, it's just to rock n' roll music. I think they do look like they are enjoying themselves. Most dances are danced in 2/4 or 4/4 timing so you are actually able to dance most dances to most types of music. I wish more people would have a better understanding of this.
In Jan's defence, she's been quite clear that she has a precise definition of "tango".

I don't agree with that definition - I think it's too strict. But it does have the benefit of clarity and simplicity.

Whereas, otherwise, we have to have a large spectrum, going from "pure tango in close hold done to traditional tango music in BsAs" at one extreme, to "Salsa with occasional enrosques" at the other end.

(Encompassing "nuevo tango moves", "Tango moves done to non-Tango music","fusions of Tango and other dance forms" on the way).

And at some point in that spectrum, all of us would draw a line to say "Nope, that's not tango".

So basically all we're discussing is where we personally have that particular "is / is not tango" line.
 

Joe

Well-Known Member
#34
Sure, there's some things that I wouldn't like. For example, I'm not overly-impressed with Swango, from what I've seen and heard it's just Swing with a couple of Tango flourishes. To me, That's Not Tango. But, I could be wrong.
But the Swango people aren't claiming that it's tango.
 

Dance Ads