Category Archives: Practica

A lesson too far, but one new turn and three old thoughts

tea

My temporary tango routine continues with the Wednesday and Sunday Juan Martin and Steffie classes.

I thought this blog post would be short, as I was hardly able to do anything in last night’s intermediate class. But I turned out to be very, very wrong about that. So grab a cup of tea and make yourself comfortable …

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The art of circular dancing feels tantalisingly close

circular dance

Let’s start with the bad news: the topics of tonight’s classes with Juan Martin & Steffi sounded perfect, but I didn’t feel that what they actually taught was a particularly good match for the promise.

The beginner/improver class was supposed to be on ‘the fundamentals of the embrace,’ while the intermediate one was billed as ‘figures in close embrace for crowded milongas’ …

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Two absolutely fantastic group classes with Juan Martin Carrara & Stefania Colina

Juan Martin Carrara & Stefania Colina

Given the unusual nature of what I’m seeking as my next step, it’s no surprise than the standard Tanguito classes didn’t seem an especially good match. That’s not a commentary on the quality of the teaching; it’s commentary on the gap between what most schools offer and what I actually want.

However, for a four week period, something rather different is happening at Tanguito. Namely, visiting teachers Juan Martin Carrara & Stefania Colina are taking over. Steph and friends were raving about them, and they weren’t wrong!

Continue reading Two absolutely fantastic group classes with Juan Martin Carrara & Stefania Colina

Changing direction, in small and large ways

changing direction

Tonight’s Tango Space topic was changing direction. I wasn’t sure what approach to this Fede and Julia would be taking, but in the practica beforehand M wanted to have a go at another method of doing so: the movement from the Boston intermediate class.

I’d shared the demo video of this, and M thought it looked fun. It was indeed, and I hadn’t yet succeeded in leading it as taught, so was happy to give it a go …

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Finally losing the future tense in ‘You’re going to be a very nice dancer’

breakthrough

Tonight was a real breakthrough for me.

Have you ever made a decision, carried it out and then got immediate and undeniable evidence that you made the right choice? That’s what happened to me tonight …

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The cross in cross system, without getting cross

cross system.jpg

As I started doing the improver as well as beginner classes at some random point in the cycle last time, there are things in the improver class I’ve done before, and other things I haven’t. The cross in cross system is one of the latter.

I wasn’t wildly optimistic, for a couple of reasons …

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Dropping the beginner class, and getting some bonus experience as a follower

levels

Many years ago, I did an introductory scuba diving course. Known as the PADI Open Water Diver course, it took four days, and comprised about a day’s theory, some swimming pool exercises and then a couple of days of diving. Do that, and you emerge as a certified diver.

Want to become an Advanced Open Water Diver? Certainly: go on to do one deep dive (30m), one navigation dive (following a compass to swim in a triangle) and three other ‘adventure’ dives (eg. a night dive), and suddenly I’m an ‘advanced’ diver – with all of eight days in the water.

Tango gradings aren’t quite that bad, but schools definitely use inflated levels designed to flatter the student …

Continue reading Dropping the beginner class, and getting some bonus experience as a follower