Style Vs Substance in Tango

LKSO

Active Member
#41
Again, we are running up against the question of what we want to achieve - a F1 car not a good choice for off roading, neither is a hummer for the race track - but i don't think it is easy to determine which is the better car, and very few people would try. We only run into problems when we have people taking their hummer on the racetrack, and then complain how bad all the other drivers are, and how boring their driving is because they just stay on the track, and don't take detours through the stand, and how they are clearly not able to deal with even the smallest brooks and the slightest inclines and the smallest bit of rubble.
The "track" in this instance is the milonga. There are unwritten rules about the milonga that must be followed for the safety and pleasure of everyone. And I think that the "Hummers" of tango (nuevo, VU, whatever, etc.) do not belong there. Fancy moves belong on the stage or on the sidewalk, not on a crowded dance floor. In this instance, the better car is obvious.

I remember one time a pair of dancers who were dancing swing to tango music at a milonga and nearly knocked other couples around. They certainly cleared a lot of space around themselves because no one wanted to get close enough to get kicked.
 
#42
Well dancing swing at a milonga is just plain ignorant. Any idiot should see when you go to a tango event with tango dancers, you are expected to dance tango and not whatever you want.

Also I'm not advocating that I should be allowed to thrash boleos around like a tether ball. I would NEVER kick other people on the floor or lead my partner to do the same. I only lead boleos, volcadas or planeos when I am sure I have the space.
 

sixela

Well-Known Member
#43
"Hummers" of tango (nuevo, VU, whatever, etc.)"

Ah, VU is now als 'hummer' by definition? I'm sure the porteños in milongas where the ronda is not strictly 'estilo del centro' with episodes of walking interspersed with on-the-spot rotations (and that holds for many example videos posted here as 'examples' of milongas!) must be charmed to hear they're "not dancing proper tango".

Fortunately, the Police is Here When You Need It on this forum, to remind us that tango in Buenos Aires is and always has been a monolithic structure without styles and heterodoxies ;-).
 

opendoor

Well-Known Member
#44
..and pleasure of everyone. And I think that the "Hummers" of tango (nuevo, VU, whatever, etc.) do not belong there...
Had to look the word hummer up and I really cannot follow your connotatons. Sorry, help needed.


....tango in Buenos Aires.. always has been a monolithic structure without styles and heterodoxies
I´m not quite sure of this. Perhaps there apparently was one tango in the GA craze, but does anyone know how it was before: did the tango population mix, or did everyone stick to his quarter, style, club, salón, class, race?
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#45
the "Hummers" of tango (nuevo, VU, whatever, etc.) do not belong there.
And I tried so hard to pick two cars that do the thing they do very well.... ;)

In some ways I think "milonga appropriateness" is independent of style, and more a question of respecting and caring for the other people, and of having learned to dance with a dancefloor as a source of inspiration and partnership (in some ways the leader is the follower of the dancefloor as a whole, and the leaders dance more an adornment of the dance of the whole floor than anything else - and some leaders dance is pretty much equivalent to unlead boleos and ganchos flying everywhere) - but sadly a lot of people visualize other the dancefloor as an obstacle course, or a chariot race like in ben hur, where it should be (at least in my view) more like a school of fish or a flock of birds. I have seen people dancing apilado and being a menace with sudden untelegraphed fast runs in all direction, sudden stops and holding up the dancefloor . And I have seen people doing nuevo and being an asset to everybodies dance on the dancefloor - tight chained enganches and ganchos, small colgadas, volcadas set up to not require the leader to step against the line of dance, saccadas in the line of dance without intruding into the other lanes.

Gssh
 

bookish

Active Member
#46
A lot of "nuevo" movements seem to be pretty rotational, which can actually be more conducive to floorcraft than "just walking [forward]". In my local scene the couples who do ganchos don't ever bug me much, but the leaders who just walk a lot run into me from behind. Of course it all depends on how the moves are done specifically.
 

Steve Pastor

Moderator
Staff member
#47
Gssh, I got your different type of vehicle analogy, which was rather good, I thought.
The soccer ? anaolgy didn't work for me. Keep trying, though. I enjoy your writing and insights.
 

sixela

Well-Known Member
#49
I´m not quite sure of this.
I'm quite sure you missed a large quantity of dripping sarcasm ;-).

FWIW, opendoor, Hummer comes from HMMM[W]V which stands for High Mobility Multipurpose [Wheeled] Vehicle, an army term.
 

sixela

Well-Known Member
#50
In some ways I think "milonga appropriateness" is independent of style,
Not entirely. Every ronda has its own 'style' and you'd best fit in it.

You have rondas without much forward progress but with enough room between the couples for some rhythmical back-and-forth (and they're ideal if you want to dance to D'Arienzo, Biagi or Donato and do small playful things).

You have others in which there are episodes of forward progress followed by rotational episodes, and these all propagate like a wave through the ronda (if I had to associate some music with it, I'd say Caló, Laurenz and later Di Sarli).

You have some music where it all becomes extremely blurry, requiring all couples to be extremely skillful (that tends to happen with late Pugliese or 1950s Piazzolla).

Some rondas even have a tacit mixing of ronda styles in between the lanes (e.g. slow forward progress but some bounciness in the outer lane, more VU walk-then-turn-then-walk in the inner lanes).

Whatever ronda there _is_, you do have the duty to fit in. You can't single-handedly decide that since you went to Lo de Celia and advanced 3 m on a single track, you're going to advance 3m to this Di Sarli/Pomar song in the milonga you just barged in and all the other guys behind you just have to adjust to the True Way of the Ronda. Or that since you see all these VU-style performances start with two rounds of linear walking and you Like That Style, you're just going to walk 5m up to the couple in front of you leaving only 10cm, and insist that they move on (regardless of whether they _can_ or not).
 

sixela

Well-Known Member
#51
Yeah, Ben Hur chariot race is what it sometimes feels like.

Got angry looks from a lady in lane 2 who mowed down my lady (in lane 3) yesterday. We were both doing giros but the other couple insisted on doing them wide and the lady planeo'ed. I got angry looks even though our couple's sphere of influence radius was probably about a third of theirs...

Of course I apologised and they didn't...but I'm sure I'm such a lowlife that I'm not even entitled to nine times less space than the Brilliant Dancers.
 

Gssh

Well-Known Member
#52
...but I'm sure I'm such a lowlife that I'm not even entitled to nine times less space than the Brilliant Dancers.
This! One of the things that annoys me most about is when the dancefloor is crowded, and we slow down/compress our dance to maintain our "bubble", and the reaction of other people is to see this as free space they are entitled to, and they expand their dance so that they bump into us anyway. I did not slow down so that the person in front of me can decide that they have enough space to do a backstep into my partner - I slowed down so that if they maintained the spacing we would get the flow of the dancfloor going.

Gssh
 

tangobro

Active Member
#53
...There was no pizzazz, nothing to make people say “wow, that’s so cool and beautiful, I’d love to do that”...

I’m not talking about dips and lifts, but shouldn’t there be some elements that show case the technical tenacity and dynamism of tango as an art form, as much as the ‘feeling’ between both partners? Does anyone share my views on show tango? Please discuss, and tell me if I’m not being clear enough.
So let's look at another place along the spectrum of style & contrast that with substance.




The late Carlos Gavito created a stage persona whose dancing style (here with Marcela Duran, who is again in "Forever Tango" on Broadway) made many people say “wow, that’s so cool and beautiful, I’d love to do that”...

Many people sought to imitate their stage dancing style for social dance. Some thought it epitomized "Milonguero Style". There are probably like a gazillion vids of Carlos Gavito on YouTube, so I won't post any here.

In contrast there is the substance of his personal style, some of which is reflected in these vids:

His Student "Bichi" Andres Laza Moreno

His friend "El Nene" Eduardo Masci

Each milonguero has his own style, but they are not above copying moves from each other. When El Nene was in New York City he taught a few moves that he said were favorites of his friend Gavito.

Alicia Pons y Luis Alberto Rojas

comments?
 

dchester

Moderator
Staff member
#56
Yeah, Ben Hur chariot race is what it sometimes feels like.

Got angry looks from a lady in lane 2 who mowed down my lady (in lane 3) yesterday. We were both doing giros but the other couple insisted on doing them wide and the lady planeo'ed. I got angry looks even though our couple's sphere of influence radius was probably about a third of theirs...

Of course I apologised and they didn't...but I'm sure I'm such a lowlife that I'm not even entitled to nine times less space than the Brilliant Dancers.
Imagine, believing you are entitled to the space you are standing in. What were you thinking?

:)
 

bordertangoman

Well-Known Member
#57
off topic; intersetingly I have been in a Dutch Army hummvee; their axle width is based on following in tank tracks(so maybe the analogy is flawed, as you wouldnt want to run into the back of a tank would you?)
 

newbie

Well-Known Member
#58
I think here are too many boring dancers out there. Safe, conservative, gentile; but oh so boring.
+1
I blame the followers here. I attended an open air milonga last week, it was partly alternative music with slower moments, slower than the usual tango beat. And the leaders were leading slower steps. But without any success. The followers would all do their usual stuff on their usual tempo. Usual cruzada, usual ochos. Then the music went back to more conservative music, the leaders went back to more conservative leading. The followers changed nothing. But ok, they were wearing nice dresses and shoes.
 
#59
Is the OP dancing for himself, his partner, or people not dancing the tanda? Social dancers dance for their partner while show dancers dance for an audience. These show dancers take up too much room at milongas and cause collisions and people being kicked from high boleos.

It really doesn't make any difference if the OP is bored. It makes a difference if a partner is bored!!
 

jantango

Active Member
#60
This was filmed in Buenos Aires at Confiteria Ideal for a scene depicting a real milonga. How many have seen this movie and come away with the wrong impression about social dancing? Argentines aren't helping people to learn the difference.​
 

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