Another reason why I don’t dance much!

Tango truths: why men dance and women sit by Tango Cynic

Advertisements

13 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. experimentsinexperience
    Oct 29, 2011 @ 16:05:26

    Tango cynic is spot on as usual …! I see that you’re in Eastbourne. I used to live in Brighton for a few years (now I’m in Berlin). My tip would be to learn to lead too, there are some really excellent followers there so it would double your chances of getting some good dances. And then you’re also the one who can pick when you hit a dry spell. Also, do you know Kirsty? She organises very good classes and milongas and if you have the problem of that video in Brighton, she can introduce you to all the leaders. She did that for me when I first came there and it worked well for me to get started.

  2. Chris
    Oct 29, 2011 @ 17:26:06

    Thanks for that, Arlene. The author should change his name to Tango Realist 🙂

  3. Arlene
    Oct 29, 2011 @ 22:03:40

    @experiment
    Not interested in leading, in any dance form. Not that desperate for dances. Dancing is my time not to think about what I am going to do next, just to feel and be in the moment. I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Kirsty yet, but she is a friend on FB. It will happen one day.

    I think you might misunderstand about my not dancing. Basically, it is my choice. I could dance all night if I wanted to, but I wouldn’t enjoy it. I have learned to be selective. Some venues are better for me than others, so if I do manage to get out, I will dance. Would rather have one great tanda, than a couple of bad ones.

    I think the video is very funny. I love the bit about the men dancing with the sexy woman with great legs that can’t dance. I have seen that sort of thing often. Obviously the men are not as selective as they think they are. Haha!

  4. Danny
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 07:43:14

    Seems to have been written by a woman who perhaps doesn’t get enough invitations, or the right ones. I have never had a conversation like this, as a man. I don’t discuss followers anyway. The embrace is confidential, surely. The tango space is a competitive one for leaders and followers alike. What’s all this stuff about a virtual list of girls he has to dance with out of social obligation? Or have I missed something?

  5. Danny
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 07:56:45

    Those silly men, dancing with a girl who has nice legs. That silly girl, wearing a short skirt. Those silly women who wear slit skirts and dance tango. Whatever next. And there I was under the impression that tango might just have something to do with, um, s-x. Silly me. Clearly I should get out more.

  6. Chris
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 00:45:40

    My tip would be to learn to lead too … it would double your chances of getting some good dances.

    Much more than double, I think. Given the excess of girls, the girl dancing as a guy can be fairly sure to get a partner for every tanda.

    The downside: this generally reduces the girl’s chances with guys. Fact is, the typical guy prefers a girl who dances as a girl, and the aforementioned excess means he can always get one.

  7. experimentsinexperience
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 11:50:14

    @Arlene I understand where you’re coming from. My thinking exactly for quite a while, but I was saying it just in case. I also prefer one good tanda to a couple of bad ones.

    @Chris Actually I wouldn’t say this is true. If guys know that you dance very well as a follower they still ask you, other leaders will see and then it’s just the same, apart from the fact that you’ll dance more overall, because you can be more active when all the leaders you want to dance with are already on the dance floor. I know enough girls for whom it works well like this.

  8. Chris
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:34:43

    If guys know that you dance very well as a follower they still ask you, other leaders will see and then it’s just the same”

    Sure, but until they do, it is very often not the same. Generally girls dance best as girls (which should not surprise anyone since that’s the way the dance is made) and so a girl’s guy-role dancing often gives a relative poor impression of her dancing.

    For example, I and many other guys I think would be unlikely to invite a girl they had seen guy-dancing like this. And though you may say “well yes, because that’s just bad dancing”, the fact is, that’s the way of dancing of lots of girls who dance as guys. Not least because that particular girl is the world’s leading teacher of girl-as-guy dancing.

  9. Andy
    Nov 09, 2011 @ 13:14:41

    Interesting video, although I have to say out of all the dancing scene i’ve been to so far, Tango is the most selective or what’s the word…err…unfriendly scene that I know.

    I have to admit that I’m a bit selective when asking for a dance but rather more based on the friendlyness of that person rather than her dancing skill.

  10. Chris
    Nov 09, 2011 @ 18:38:39

    I have to say out of all the dancing scene i’ve been to so far, Tango is the most selective

    Well I think that’s to be expected. Dancing tango is a very special language and culture, and inevitably that makes it selective… and exclusive. I don’t think the milonga scene could work any other way. A good demonstration is the alternative tango scenes that have emerged lately – classes, tango camps etc. Any event advertised as “inclusive” do in practice deselect most people who can really dance.

  11. Andy
    Nov 10, 2011 @ 16:12:22

    @Chris: Of course, I certainly agree with you and I do see there are good and valid reasons why Tango is selective as well as many other etiquettes in tango.

    But the point Im trying to make is that because of all those seemingly “valid” reasons, it made the communities become slightly more selfish (Im not saying it’s a bad thing), a little bit less nice to others on the dance floor. Im not suggesting everyone in the milonga is like that, but there seem to be more of those vibe in the milonga in comparison to other dance.

    And may be, sometimes it restricted a certain freedom/creativity in dancing. To me, the essence of any partner dancing is just be with your partner, and share your interpretation of music and express it through your movement where/however the music takes you. So the fact of the selectiveness of tango, may be it prevent somewhat this freedom to dance. e.g sometimes I found my partner insist staying on the line of dance despite there are no one else ( or only a few couples) on the dance floor. If there’s any other reason to stay on the line of dance apart of avoiding crash to another couples in a busy milonga, please me know.

  12. Chris
    Nov 11, 2011 @ 01:32:37

    To me, the essence of any partner dancing is just be with your partner, and share your interpretation of music and express it through your movement where/however the music takes you.

    That’s fine if you are the only couple on the floor. But the essentials of social tango dancing also include your relationship with the other couples in the ronda.

    I found my partner insist staying on the line of dance despite there are no one else (or only a few couples) on the dance floor.

    Good habits die hard.

    If there’s any other reason to stay on the line of dance apart of avoiding crash to another couples in a busy milonga, please me know.

    One is that the guy behind is following you, just as you are (or should be) following the guy in front. And so on in a chain that links back on itself to form a ronda. That’s how it works, at least in places where the standard of dancing is high.

    This is fundamental to social tango dancing for reasons not just social but also economic. The London tango scene’s paucity of milongas*is in part because too much of the dancing needs more floor space that an affordable entrance price can buy, given the rent the organiser must typically pay. I’ve watched the sad fortunes of one particular organiser who over the last 10 years has lost more venues that I can remember, being each time unable to get enough attendance to pay the rent, and yet not realising the main reason she has a far harder time than most of her competitors. She is teaching and attracting nuevo dancing that needs (at least) twice as much floor per couple, so can get only half as many people in a given venue before it is full. Most teachers of this ilk run only classes, where (business-wise) anti-social dancing works just fine. But in milongas, bad dancing is bad business, and hence is a luxury that a real-world tango scene cannot afford.

  13. Andy
    Nov 11, 2011 @ 14:37:07

    Yes, I can certainly understand dancing space have to be economicly used, hence the idea of the line of dance, which is the perfect solution. I do think every dancer should be responsible on the dance floor in term of dance space, safety etc . But when in the rare occasion when time/space allow…e.g end or beginning of the night where you got the entire floor to yourself, it’s nice everynow and again to enjoy the space.

    If dancing to salon music, one probably wont use much space anyhow, but it’s nice to have the freedom and peace of mind to do so. More often, it’s the most inspiring dance ( in any style, not just tango) is the one that is inspired and improvised in the moment of creativity which create the magic of dance.

    Whilst well control space in social dancing is best practice and highly recommended in most situation, sometimes, one could carry away and let dance just be about dance, not that Im encouraging dancers to dance like the dance floor is their own and taking any space they want as if noone else is around.

%d bloggers like this: