Why tango changes your life

Why tango changes your life

Your growth in tango, in a broader sense, is about learning what you like, what makes you happy, what gives you pleasure but also a sense of becoming more you - or a better you. Tango is not only about learning how to dance and how to successfully interact with other people, it is also about giving priority to what you personally like. Tango is an extremely free environment that does not oblige you to anything, not even to follow its own loosely defined rules. It is not an institution. It is not a religion. It is not an organisation. And therefore everything about tango is only about your own choice: from teachers and dance partners to the way you look, where you go to dance, which music you dance to and so on. This freedom is also what makes tango so attractive and so rich in its various expressions. For me, all attempts to limit tango to one specific style or one particular type of movement go against the very spirit of tango.

Why we believe that dancing with better dancers makes us dance better

Why we believe that dancing with better dancers makes us dance better

There exists a belief in tango community that sounds something like this: “If I get to dance with better dancers, my dancing will improve much faster than if I only dance with people of my own level.” Or like this: “Experienced dancers should dance more with beginners. How are these poor souls supposed to learn if they are stuck with other beginners?” A female student leaving a class with the words: “Every new follower should be given a very good leader from the start! If we wait for these men here to become decent dancers, we will be waiting forever!”

Why leading is not more difficult than following

Why leading is not more difficult than following

I hear this statement all the time: “Leading is more difficult than following.” Sometimes apologetically, sometimes with the qualifier, “but just in the beginning and intermediate stages,” but always with the bottom line that leading intrinsically requires more skill, more thought, and more attention than following.

This might be okay if it were true, but it isn’t true, and this mistaken belief distorts the true nature of leading and following and leads to negative effects in our dance partnerships and in our communities.

So why is leading actually not more difficult? If leading is not more difficult, why does it seem to be? And what can we do to restore the balance?

La Practilonga

PRACTICA, milonga

Join us on Friday the 28th for a fun, casual night of practice & dancing. Our mission is to create a monthly event for people that are excited about growing, sharing and encouraging each other. 

♥ 2 hours of Practice
♥ 2 hours of Milonga

DJ VILLANO will keep you dancing non-stop. 
$12 at the door.

 

LOCATION:
10852 Burbank Blvd
NoHo, CA 91601

TIME:
8.30pm-12.30am


The Caltech Anniversary Milonga

For this once a year event, dancing will extend essentially all night long, with the milonga running from 9pm in the evening until 5am the following morning.  

DJ Sabah from 9 pm - 1 am
DJ Vincent from 1 am - 5 am

As always, the event is held in beautiful Dabney Hall at Caltech. 
Regular/Caltech Affiliate/Full time student with ID: $20/$15/$10

directions

If you’re driving to Caltech, it’s best to park in one of the parking structures on campus (see map) -- DO NOT PARK ON THE STREET! (if you're staying past midnight) Otherwise, you will get ticketed at 2AM.  The Caltech parking structures are free to park in for the entire marathon.  The nominal address for Caltech is 1200 E California Blvd, which will take you to the southern edge of Caltech, and from there you can follow the map below.  It’s about a 5 min walk from the parking structure to Dabney Hall.

Tango 101 Intensive Workshop

Something about this 19th-century immigrant dance seems to flip people's worlds upside-down; the beauty of improvising one of the world’s most complex dances with another human being is a beautiful and extraordinary experience that has earned its reputation for being notoriously addictive.

TANGO 101 INTENSIVE WORKSHOP:

In this workshop you will learn the essentials to get started leading, following and connecting to the music and your partner. It's a summary of the first 2 months of the Tango 100 curriculum for anyone who's never danced Tango before, but also for the experienced Tango dancer to go back and clean up their basics. 

Dear Tangueros & Tangueras...

A tango message from Chicho Frumboli translated and shared by Julia Schiptsova.

There is nothing worse in tango than believing that we dance well and have a “level”. A boleo, a sacada, a gancho, a colgada executed more or less in the rhythm, and we already feel that we are “experts”, “critics”, “professionals”... Tango has “this” that for my generation is something new. My generation worked every day to understand, grow, and improve, because the information wasn’t as clear as it is for today’s generations. To investigate, discover, get together with friends to practice what we have studied and learned in a class…. it all seems as if it were from another age...

It’s not easy to keep “motivation” in any part of life. Having a routine, or following a pattern is comfortable for some; for others, routine can be crushing and destructive in terms of both learning and creativity. Some leaders and followers say it’s hard to find a partner to take classes with or to dance with in milongas, someone “who would be at my level” as they describe it, but have they ever questioned if they themselves have that “level”?? I say this because of the competition that exists today.

When learning tango, we have to think of being open and available just as much as in listening to our own bodies and in controlling certain moves that we maybe never thought we could get, in learning about the dynamics, the musicality, the syncopation, the dialog. The technique is the same for men and women, the only difference is that one leads and the other follows. However, I see that often men focus on the movement, without thinking what they express with it, a lot of times those movements have no content and appear more like a monologue that doesn’t include their partner. Hiding behind the movement impairs our ability to commit to the emotions or to another human being in that moment. And women want to be led that boleo that they have perfected and also to be able to connect…. But what if the Wi-Fi isn’t working well? What if this time the Bluetooth is failing us? What do we do??? Abandon it all???

After working for Tango for over 20 years, investigating and creating ever since discovering it, I can tell that my technique is based on “giving and receiving”, listening and responding, on having a dialogue… those who are familiar with it know that it’s what it is. There are not many generous people in tango. What does the “LEVEL” mean? Maybe it’s something that allows us to be a part? To belong to a select group of people who woke up one day and decided that they can convert into critics and look down at others from a different height?? Or is it someone who is aware that there is always something to learn and is available to share? “Outfits” don’t make one a tanguero, a “high boleo” doesn’t make one a tanguera.

What does make us tangueros is the sentiments that we dance and listen to, it’s not only the connection, but also the sentiments for the music, for the shared movement, for the enjoyment of a tanda, with whomever, without thinking of their LEVEL. Learning is a divine state, a beautiful process of exploring. Let’s do it for the tango as the tango has been doing a lot for us. Let’s study it, understand it, take care of it, instead of destroying it with our human banalities.

Let’s caress, embrace, let’s dance with love. The more we give… the more we will receive… The trends, the critics, the experts - none of it exists in Tango. Let’s not contaminate it. I’m waiting for you to enjoy, to have a good time and to share with both, MEN and WOMEN, those who would like to keep growing, who feel that Tango keeps “motivating” them, those who would like to be a part and belong to its world, without the limits. Abrazo!
— Mariano “Chicho” Frumboli
Chicho Frumboli & Juana Sepulveda

Chicho Frumboli & Juana Sepulveda

The Holiday Milonga

holiday milonga at LATA

It’s the most wonderful time of the year – join us as we celebrate the end of our second LA Tango Academy year and ring in the season with a very special night loaded with juicy tangos, holiday cortinas & refreshments (...including Glögg & festive desserts!) 

Wear your favorite holiday costume and dance the night away with new and old friends.

Doors open at 8:00p.

Dec 23   |   8pm-midnight   |   10852 Burbank Blvd, CA 91601

Tango Hugs

Tango Hugs

Hugging releases oxytocin and dopamine, meaning that hugs lower stress levels, blood pressure, and heart rate, and they make us happy. They also make us trust and care for each other more, strengthening our relationships and personal connections.  In fact, scientists (who are apparently getting around waaaaay more than I thought) recommend hugging for at least twenty seconds, eight times a day.