An experienced tango friend tagged me in a Facebook thread by a tango teacher, on what can be done to encourage beginner leaders to stick with it long enough to graduate from Tango Hell.
I wrote a lengthy reply, and then realised I’d just written my next blog post. Here’s what I wrote …,
Continue reading Eight ways to prevent leaders giving up in their first year
Sometimes a tango teacher will say something that’s blindingly obvious once they’ve said it, but which hadn’t occurred to me before then.
One earlier example was the times I was unsure where my follower’s weight was. The blindingly obvious solution to that, of course, is to lead a weight-change – then you’ll know where it is because you just put it there! And yesterday Irina Zoueva kindly messaged me in response to my previous blog post …
Continue reading There’s no tango maths required after all!
I posted at length last month about the kind of dancer I want to be, the executive summary of which was:
- A warm embrace
- Dancing to the music
- A clear and comfortable lead
- A collaborative dance
- Simple things, done well
That second bullet is key …
Continue reading A difficult question, that turned out to have a very simple answer
Sunday’s tango-related fun kicked off with a 90-minute talk on Troilo by Michael Lavocah, author of Tango Stories, Musical Secrets.
I couldn’t even begin to do justice to the talk in a brief blog post. Lavocah clearly has an immense breadth and depth of knowledge, and boundless enthusiasm for sharing as much of it as humanly possible …
Continue reading Michael Lavocah on Troilo, and more learning about leading through following
An experience common to most beginners in tango, I suspect, is learning something in a class, feeling somewhat comfortable with it by the end of the lesson – and then struggling to remember it later.
Bridgitta recommended creating drawings as aide-mémoire for myself. There is, she suggested, something about the drawing process itself that helps embed things into our memory …
Continue reading Geometry lessons
I’d set myself some musical homework, and Bridgitta had set me some more.
Bridgitta’s was to listen to some tango songs and dance only one instrument at a time. Express only what that one instrument is doing, and when the instrument is silent, be still …
Continue reading Tango stories, musical secrets – and emulating an untalented three-year-old
I’ve mentioned before Iona Italia writing something that really resonated with me, written as advice for giving feedback to a practice partner …
Continue reading A personal checklist, and actitude
Understanding the physics of the tango walk
Walking to tonight’s Tango Space lesson, it occurred to me that I could use ordinary walking as practice. Not a full-on tango walk through Waterloo (though I have been known to do that on an empty DLR platform, which I’m sure amused someone on the other end of a CCTV feed), but just practicing really pushing into the ground. And in doing so, I solved a mystery that had been bugging me for a while.
The first time I ever really got that part of the walk right, Steph could instantly feel it, and Mariano could immediately see it. Yet I couldn’t figure out how that could be. How could something that happened purely inside my own body be not only felt but seen … ?
Continue reading Learning in the street, and the cross
Our Tango World, 1: Learning and Community is an oddly prosaic title for an extremely poetic and impassioned book. I couldn’t help but feel that it deserves something more akin to Twelve Minutes of Love.
But the fact that I’m writing this review a little over 24 hours after taking delivery of the book is testament to the fact that this was my sole disappointment …
Continue reading A beginner reviews ‘Our Tango World’