A fortnight’s tango fast broken with an excellent practica


It wasn’t my plan to have a fortnight-long tango fast, but two lazy evenings, one rain-sodden day and one milonga I’d expected to happen that didn’t all conspired against me.

I was glad, therefore, that my reintroduction to tango was a practica before the milongas resume tomorrow …

I’ve restarted the Saturday afternoon practicas we host at our place. We now have even more room thanks to upgrading our expanding dining table to one that folds away to a small desk. We can comfortably accommodate three couples in the living room and another in the office, but that wasn’t necessary today, with just two leaders and one follower.

Our sole follower also hadn’t danced for a while, so was happy to Just Dance, which is mostly what we did.

I did practice planeos. It’s a movement I know quite a few followers enjoy, and which I don’t tend to do simply because it’s something I don’t consider milonga-ready. Practicing it today reinforced that view, and answers one question: what do do in my next private.

I don’t mean my planeos are terrible. I tried one with Steph and she said it was fine, but I don’t feel like I’m as smooth as I’d like to be, and I want to get better at starting and ending them.

My next lessons

I’ve now settled on what seems to be a suitable plan for both group and private classes. With the group ones, I do my best with the figure during the class for the benefit of the followers, but what I’m personally looking for is one small component I can take away with me and incorporate into my own dance.

With privates, I work on refining my technique, and again looking for small extra elements. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to focus on in my next lessons, but now I do. Both the planeo and Americana are things that fit my definition of simple things I can incorporate into my dance, but I haven’t had enough experience of either to get them to the point where I felt they met the standard I now want of anything I do in a milonga. Working on them in privates should close that gap.

My first private of the year may be different; we’ll see. It’s with Maeve, and I haven’t danced with her for a very long time! So for my next lesson with her, my plan is simply to dance and then ask her what I need to work on. Of course, it may be that we can use planeos to work on whatever area she feels needs to be my priority, but if not, we can get to them next time.

I’ll also be resuming my regular privates with Julia and Fede, when I can also finally hand over Fede’s tango trousers from BsAs!

Image: Shutterstock

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