Who is this blog for?

I created this blog primarily for the Dancer.  As it states in my header, this is Arlene’s London Tango.  The London Tango that I knew and loved when I first started dancing has changed dramatically.  With the influx of Tango Shows and the advent of Argentine Tango being featured on Strictly Come Dancing, London has become inundated with Milongas and teachers.  Everyone wants to dance Argentine Tango and many people think they can teach.

I try to keep an open mind, but Argentine Tango evokes many emotions, it can be difficult.  I was lucky to learn in a time when the milongas were limited and we all knew who the teachers were.  We also knew who everyone else was, whether we talked or danced with that person or not.  It seems that almost overnight we have acquired venues to go to every night of the week.  Sometimes there is more than one choice.  There are teachers who I have never even heard of or who have started teaching so soon after learning how to dance.  It can be difficult to keep up with it all.

When I set up the Milonga Calendar, I used to include practicas and special workshops.  Because of the influx of teachers and classes and new Milongas, I have decided to keep things simple and just focus on the regular weekly Milongas.  If you want a class, there is usually one before the Milonga.  I also list special events such as shows, concerts, festivals and special one-off milongas.  They are all on the calendar.  If it is Tango related, and it is happening in London and I know about it, it will be listed on the calendar.

If you teach a class, you can have your name listed on the sidebar or you can advertise on two Facebook groups:  1) Argentine Tango in London and 2) London Tango (I am not affiliated with this group except as a member).  You can also join the Yahoo Tango-UK group.  Interestingly enough, I get a lot of my information about closures or special events from these three sources.  I do not endorse teachers.  I no longer know who many of them are, and if I do know them I would not know how to recommend them if I haven’t had a class with them.  I have danced with many who have become teachers.  I don’t even want to go down that road.  The less said the better.  Teachers, can’t live with ’em but can probably live without a lot of them.  The choice is yours dear Dancer.

If I am not listing a milonga it is probably because I don’t know about it or I know about it and it isn’t a regular one.  There are some people who start milongas and the venues keep changing or events get cancelled regularly.  To me, these are not reliable milongas, so I don’t list them.

I have my favourite milongas.  They have stood the test of time and are still going strong.  They must be doing something right.  I haven’t been to every milonga.  I can’t do everything.  However, I have listed them for you, with links to the websites.  As a dancer, it is up to you to take some responsibility before you go out.  I might have missed something.

I also have links and posts that go further afield, like Buenos Aires, the Mecca of Argentine Tango.  There are links to Tango in Europe.  If anyone has a good tango link to a place they like to dance in Europe, and I don’t have it, please let me know.

If there is something you would like to know about or see regularly on this blog, please let me know via a comment.

In the meantime, Happy Dancing!

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Chris
    Jan 18, 2012 @ 18:56:59

    “The London Tango that I knew and loved when I first started dancing has changed dramatically. …. inundated with Milongas and teachers.

    I’d welcome an inundation of milongas, but I have to say I haven’t seen one – comparing against e.g. the Las Tangueras list of 10 years ago, no appreciable increase.

    But an inundation of teachers – yes. London is now famous worldwide as Tango School Central, a place where just about anyone from sufficiently far away to hide their lack of qualifications can move in and set up a profitable tango class business. Ability to teach or dance anything that’s recognised as tango in Argentina is not a requirement, and (where coupled with conscience) is actually a handicap.

    Facebook groups: London Tango

    I think anyone following your recommendation of that group Arlene should know of the extreme hostility of Hiba Faisal, the London dance school teacher who controls it. After I made this report mentioning her recent censoring of legitimate postings I was summarily banned from the group.

    Thanks for another informative, interesting and somewhat brave post.

  2. Arlene
    Jan 18, 2012 @ 21:03:03

    You are right about the Milongas Chris. I don’t mind there being more of them, its the DJ’s and style of dancing at some of them…

    As for FB Group London Tango, well it is supposed to be for others to inform and be informed about stuff going on in London. If you are adding different content, then that is a risk you take to have the information and your membership to an open group removed.

    As for being brave, well that is something else. Teachers are necessary, to a point and I wouldn’t have been able to develop my dance if I didn’t have instruction. Not all of it good by the way, but some of it was. It’s a learning curve for sure.

    All the best,
    A

  3. Ann Marie Posa
    Jan 31, 2012 @ 07:25:48

    Hi Arlene,
    in your blog I discovered the site of Collecion la Recoleta and would like to order a pair of shoes from them. Unfortunately the affordable mail client is not installed on my computer, hence I haven’t managed to email them so far. Could you provide me with an email address? Thanks in advance, Ann Marie

  4. Arlene
    Jan 31, 2012 @ 08:46:05

    Ann Marie,
    Their contact details should be on their website.
    Happy Shoe Shopping!
    Arlene

  5. Ann Marie Posa
    Jan 31, 2012 @ 12:09:19

    “Their contact details should be on their website.”
    No, their website doesn’t show any contact detail I could use. AM

  6. Arlene
    Jan 31, 2012 @ 13:37:02

    Ann Marie,
    Here is the link: http://www.coleccionlarecoleta.com/Pages/home.html
    If you can’t send an e-mail from the browser, just copy and paste the e-mail address into what you normally use to send e-mails, or join their Facebook page. That’s all I’ve got. I really don’t see a problem here.
    Arlene

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