Close embrace

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#41
No, no, I don't mean pick it on the dance floor, I mean pick it in the forum sense of condemning those who hold even a moderately opposing view on the subject of CE/OE to burn in everlasting tango fire.
Sure! Go ahead and pick pivoting. And I'll pick crossing. ok.. to your corner, and when the bell rings, come out swingin'!

You ready?

DING!
 

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#43
When it DOES happen, you can actually feel your partner's leg moving behind her as if it's connected to your chest.
My partner always talks about how much energy he could feel in Rebecca Shulman's crossing back ocho. I've been trying to get to her level for years and I just don't have it. She's a tiny little thing too, so it isn't about size.
 

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#44
I THINK wer're still on "milonguero ochos".
To "lead" them well requires that you feel your partner's body nearly as well as your own. It's NOT something you can do on your own. It's the result of an intense physical connection between the two bodies, and BOTH parnters have to co operate to make it happen.
I agree that you need the follower's cooperation and that you can't make it happen on your own. I disagree beyond that. The follower has to FOLLOW. She can't go off on her own doing "what she learned" about ochos in her open embrace or nuevo class.

If you are dancing a style which involves maintaining a parallel connection and you don't rotate your chest at all or use your arms to push her this way or that, she has not gotten a lead to pivot. So if she breaks the connection and pivots, its HER mistake. If you step forward down line of dance on a slight diagonal with your shoulders square, and she tries to pivot to go sideways just because she's stepping with the foot that would be an ocho, it's her mistake.

If you find it just as hard to lead them to someone who has never learned pivoting ochos, maybe there's something going wrong with your lead. But my guess is that any difficulty you have is with the follower not following what you're actually leading.
 

Subliminal

Well-Known Member
#45
Getting the back ocho around in a molinete is the hardest part of this style. Its easier for the follower to let it land behind her rather than actually crossing it much. Then the follower tries to get back on track by fixing it with the side step.Often she then finds she doesn't have room for her leg to pass through for the front ocho (cross).

This may be why you find them easier in apilado. If the sequence is back, side, front and the follower doesn't get her back ocho around far enough, her lean on you will increase because she lands on a foot that is now too far away. If you were already in apilado, this won't cause as many problems as it does if you weren't expecting her to be leaning on you. When she "fixes" it in the side step and doesn't leave herself room to get her leg through for the front cross, that too will be more awkward without the separation of the feet that often comes from apilado. And all of this changing of her position to you will feel awkward.

Basically though, all that is because the follower is doing what would be the "lazy" version of crossing ochos and needs to refine HER technique. If anything, it is the side step in the back, side, front sequence that should cheat back a slight amount to allow room for the foot to come through for the front ocho/cross. However, contrary to BTM's insistence on calling these "fat old lady ochos", followers with short large legs will find it much harder to solve this because of the difficulty in getting the leg crossed enough in the back step.
I was actually taught a trick as a leader to help the follower find her back cross in the apilado giro. Basically, you do a preperation move where you lead her to kind of "swing" her leg behind her on the "and" of the previous beat, then on the actual beat you just drop her foot into place in the back cross. Makes them feel 10 times more controlled imo. This is also the only way I can get continous smooth turns in apilado to work as well. And by swing, I don't mean colgada. It's far more subtle and invisible to anyone watching.
 

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#46
I was actually taught a trick as a leader to help the follower find her back cross in the apilado giro. Basically, you do a preperation move where you lead her to kind of "swing" her leg behind her on the "and" of the previous beat, then on the actual beat you just drop her foot into place in the back cross. Makes them feel 10 times more controlled imo. This is also the only way I can get continous smooth turns in apilado to work as well. And by swing, I don't mean colgada. It's far more subtle and invisible to anyone watching.
I'd love to feel that to compare it to what my partner does. I usually get some swing in my free leg, but it isn't happening on the "and" as you say. It also comes from the way he uses his shoulders to start the rotation. To me, that's just a basic part of leading the molinete, but maybe leaders aren't taught to do that when they are leading them in a more open or nuevo style. I find it is a useful way to lead the beginning of any molinete, so maybe that's why I don't notice a difference in how I lead milonguero ones.

I also find that I have to resist the tendency to swing the leg too freely, as it sometimes goes out and around before crossing back. With plenty of room, I'm sure that looks cool, but often, milonguero style gets used when there ISN'T much room.

So whatever is done by the leader to achieve this little swing needs to be done just right or she might end up kicking someone if it's too big (as I admit I did once or twice while learning control)
 

dchester

Moderator
Staff member
#47
Or come down my way and ask me to dance! It seems rare that I find a man who can/will dance with shared weight, and who will give back all of the pressure/energy I want to put into the embrace.
I promise I'll look you up, the next time I'm headed to your area.

:cool:
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#50
Rather than lazy, I consider it to be merely different than the larger, pivoting ocho of a more open embrace.

Learning to "drop" the moving leg/foot behind the weighted leg to make the "milonguero ocho" work, and feel "right" is not so easy.

As I wrote earlier, it is extremely helpful to learn from someone who knows this style.
I consider the crossed ocho to be (at least for me, ymmv) much more difficult technically - it requires both the follower and the leader to activly maintain connection and communicate clearly through the connection. I personally have the problem that with many followers i can not feel the moment their foot touches the ground which makes it difficult to then have control over the weightshift. A small bit of vocabulary that has helped me practicing my sensitivity is to start crossed back ochos by unraveling a standard cross - it requires the leader to feel exactly where her leg is in relation to her axis, and to keep her feeling secure and balanced, to keep her from either collecting or making a short backstep instead of ending up in a backcross.
But when it works it is a neat move - followers tend to like the little floating things :).

Gssh
 
#51
Hi everyone!

First of all, I would like to wish you all a great new year and hope that it will bring you lots of fun in milongas and elsewhere ;)

Back to what I've read, I can't agree with something like (fat old lady style lol) crossed ochos. As far as I can remember, in all partner dances, forward and backward steps should be done perpendicularly to the pelvis whereas side steps should be done in the alignment of the pelvis. That's the very reason of why we do pivots first before the execution of the forward or backward step, to make the pelvis perpendicular to the direction of the step. Diagonal steps are anti-elegant and should be banned from dancefloors.

I've been asked to post links to videos to illustrate what I mean, but I don't have the permission. I remember of a rather good instructor: Homer Ladas. In some videos, you may see him dancing in close embrace with good technique. His partner correctly does pivots first before the execution of any step. That's art.

Followers can make pivots in close embrace. It's difficult but it's possible. In fact, whether you dance in close or open embrace, you should be able to make almost all figures in both positions.
 

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#53
Back to what I've read, I can't agree with something like (fat old lady style lol) crossed ochos. As far as I can remember, in all partner dances, forward and backward steps should be done perpendicularly to the pelvis whereas side steps should be done in the alignment of the pelvis. .
I'm afraid that "rules" like this don't really apply in AT. It sounds like maybe you are coming from a ballroom background and trying to apply what you learned there unilaterally?

Also, maybe we have a language and translation issue happening, but to say you "don't agree" with a certain style is a little odd. You can like it or not, but what does it mean to "disagree" with a valid style? The fact that you may not consider it valid doesn't really change whether or not it is..

So I guess I disagree with the fact that you "don't agree".
 

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#54
side steps should be done in the alignment of the pelvis.
Actually, in a milonguero molinete, the ochos ARE in alignment to the pelvis... they are crossing sidesteps.

Ochos done in place can also be done as crossing sidesteps rather than pivots. Its just easier to do them crossing if they travel, which makes them a hybrid of a backstep and a sidestep (ie: a diagonal)

"Crossing ochos" can also be done as almost a direct backstep. People dont' recognize them as ochos, but the only thing that is different from an ocho is the direction of travel. It's basically walking in cross-feet so the leader has to make his step slightly diagonal to get around hers

For an extreme example of crossing side steps see 1:25-1:35 (right after she kicks a photographer, which always gives me a chuckle to watch):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEfCDWLwp-4

I defy anyone to say Mariana Galassi is not elegant (this unusual outfit notwithstanding)

If I were not determined to remain anonymous on the forum, I would post a video of my partner and I doing traveling crossed back ochos. (ie: walking in crossfeet) They give quite an opportunity for a long leg line and I have been told I look quite nice doing them. The reason you probably don't like the look of them is that so few people do them. You haven't seen them done by a wide variety of people of different skills. There's quite a lot you can do with them once the concept is there.
 
#55
I indeed come from the ballroom world and I continue to encounter lots of detractors who say that ballroom samba is not samba, ballroom cha-cha not cha-cha, ballroom tango not tango and so on. Well, to me, the ballroom community has established rules to make dance the most elegant possible. Ballroom samba may not be true samba, but it is much more elegant and I definitely prefer people that dance international samba on samba music rather than whatever so called true samba from Rio. Argentine tango is all about elegance, more than any other dance. Men are not to dance in milongas wearing short-sleeves shirts. Women are not to dance with low-heels shoes. Elegance is the main characteristic of argentine tango and there are more reasons for those ballroom rules to be applied to argentine tango (with some exceptions) than to any other dance.
 
#56
To Zoopsia59:

Cross side steps are not ochos but I agree with you to say that Mariana has a strong technique for doing them very well. The direction of her cross side steps is in the alignment of her pelvis which is good. Take a look at 2:18 instead when the leader turns around the follower. He does wrong with the execution of the figure. He sends back the leg diagonally to his pelvis. He should have made a pivot first for his pelvis to be exactly perpendicular to the direction where he sends his leg. He also does wrong with his torso and arms. Definitely not a good dancer.
 

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#57
ballroom tango not tango
Ballroom tango is tango but it is not Argentine Tango. They are two different dances. It is not being a "detractor" if someone points that out. Each has it's place and it does not detract from Ballroom to acknowledge that AT is a different dance. (or vice versa)

the ballroom community has established rules
And AT doesn't.

Well... there are practitioners who claim that their views are the "rules" but for any rules one person has, there are plenty of others who have rules that say something quite different.

Argentine tango is all about elegance
You are going to get lots of disagreement on what AT is "all about". Very few people I know who dance AT would say that it is primarily, or first and foremost, about elegance specifically. Elegance is great, but it's not the primary objective for most AT social dancers. I'm not even sure it is the primary goal of show dancers.

there are more reasons for those ballroom rules to be applied to argentine tango (with some exceptions) than to any other dance.
There are no reasons to apply rules from one dance to another except when they actually.. you know.. APPLY. There are ballroom rules that simply don't apply. Period.

Men are not to dance in milongas wearing short-sleeves shirts. Women are not to dance with low-heels shoes.
Well, we're so glad you came to clear this up for us. Us poor dumb AT dancers didn't know the dress code for our own events That 75 year old here who has been dancing all her life and is one of the most sought-after followers in our tango community will have to stay home from now on since she can't wear high heels anymore. :rolleyes:

Oh wait... you said she isn't to DANCE... I guess she can still come to socialize, right? I mean... I need to know so I can tell her what to do, seeing as how I've got the word of some stranger on the internet to back me up when I have to ask her to leave with her tacky low heeled shoes. Maybe I can get some dude in a t-shirt to drive her home, since he's got to go too. :cool:

Are you here just to troll and stir up controversy to get a rise out of people?
 

Zoopsia59

Well-Known Member
#58
He does wrong with the execution of the figure. He sends back the leg diagonally to his pelvis. He should have made a pivot first for his pelvis to be exactly perpendicular to the direction where he sends his leg. He also does wrong with his torso and arms. Definitely not a good dancer.
BWA HA HA!!!

Murat Erdemsel not a good dancer... HAHAHHA..

You wanna give me an example of someone you think IS a good AT dancer? You don't need to post a vid.. just a name will do, I can research for myself. (and if you say Corky Ballas, well...)
 

Peaches

Well-Known Member
#59
I indeed come from the ballroom world and I continue to encounter lots of detractors who say that ballroom samba is not samba, ballroom cha-cha not cha-cha, ballroom tango not tango and so on. Well, to me, the ballroom community has established rules to make dance the most elegant possible. Ballroom samba may not be true samba, but it is much more elegant and I definitely prefer people that dance international samba on samba music rather than whatever so called true samba from Rio. Argentine tango is all about elegance, more than any other dance. Men are not to dance in milongas wearing short-sleeves shirts. Women are not to dance with low-heels shoes. Elegance is the main characteristic of argentine tango and there are more reasons for those ballroom rules to be applied to argentine tango (with some exceptions) than to any other dance.
Sorry. But this is a bunch of crap. "Are not to dance blah blah blah." If you think ballroom is "better," then stick to ballroom. Because it is clear that you do not actually understand AT.
 

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