Category Archives: Tango

Returning to leading lessons as BsAs fast approaches

Three things to me are clear from my following adventure: I’m really enjoying it; it’s helping my lead too; it’s going to be several months before I get anywhere close to being able to follow competently in a milonga.

That being the case, and with my month-long return to Buenos Aires rapidly approaching, I decided it was time to use my last few privates before March to tune-up my lead …

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Pugliese helping out with my latest following lesson

A busy work trip to Vegas followed by a bout of COVID brought home as a souvenir meant that I hadn’t done as much solo practice as I’d hoped – and it showed! Though Emma seemed more impressed by my following than I was, with rather more ‘Esa!’s than I felt were merited.

But despite me still feeling I was 70% clumsiness to 30% flow, Señor Pugliese joined Emma as co-teacher to deliver one hugely important lesson …

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In praise of active cabeceo by followers

I’ve officially written so many blog posts I can’t remember which ones I have or haven’t written … As with Etonathon, I thought I’d written this one before, but can’t find any evidence for this.

In my previous post, I mentioned a follower friend who was feeling too shy to cabeceo a leader she felt was too far above her tango pay-grade. I tried to persuade her, based on my own experience of having many more acceptances than declines from far more advanced followers, but ended up having to take executive action

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Seeing out the new year at Etonathon and Tango 178

I thought I’d written a blog post about my previous visit to Etonathon, but if I did, WordPress search can’t find it. The executive summary is that I had a wonderful time, and added it to my ‘must go again’ list. So I did.

Etonathon is also clearly just far enough outside London to fall into the, well, ‘outside London’ category. Great floorcraft, great music, and very musical dancing …

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A eulogy to Salon Canning

The closure of Salon Canning sounds so terribly wrong even as a written phrase, let alone a reality. Yet it’s true: the most famous milonga venue in the world has closed its doors to tango.

I first heard the news as a rumour, without any linked source, so Googled ‘Salon Canning closing.’ In a bittersweet moment, the first hit was to one of my own blog posts

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It’s all in the smallest of things, as I battle with following back ochos

We all know tango is never a straight line. Some days, you feel like Gavito, other days like a baby elephant taking its first steps. Tonight was one of the latter days.

But despite the fact that I felt I wasn’t remotely on form, Emma still delivered another ocho revelation

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Emma’s forward ocho miracles, and following a less industrial-sized lead

This evening was my first following lesson with Emma, and it was an amazing one!

So far, I’ve felt that the act of following itself is really starting to fall into place, but that I had a zillion technique issues to address with my pivots. That’s absolutely still the case, of course, but I felt like in the course of a single lesson my forward pivots went from 20% to 60% (where my current standard for 100% is “could pass for a halfway-competent beginner follower, given a sufficiently dark room”) …

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Following is really starting to click, thanks to a lesson I learned in motorsports

I’m really amazed at how well following is really starting to click now! And it’s all down to an approach I learned in my pre-tango obsession: motorsports.

The biggest problem I had when I started this latest tango adventure was anticipating the lead. I was listening to the music and knew how I would interpret it. At best, I would be expecting to move in one way and then have to quickly switch gears in my head to follow what was actually led; at worst, I was doing completely unled movements …

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Feeling that festivals are my tango future

I know, I’ve only been to four events across two festivals so far, so it may be rather early to draw any firm conclusions. But certainly my limited experience to date suggests that festivals (and BsAs, of course!) may be where I do most of my dancing in future.

If this does prove to be the case, it’ll be the next stage in a gradual process for me …

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Tango by the Sea: More festival heaven

Filling the tango festival gap between the November and December Feasts was a new-to-me one: Tango by the Sea, in Felixstowe. I did have to take the ‘by the sea’ part on trust, as the furthest I got from the dance floor was a cafe about 200 feet away.

Actually, they refer to it as a house-party rather than a festival, as a way of emphasising the relaxed and fun atmosphere they want people to enjoy …

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