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Rene y Junko Classes in Atlanta starting Thursday Sep. 26

We are looking forward to hosting Rene y Junko later THIS week.

They will be teaching both our classes on Thursday at Daza (8pm to 10:15pm), performing Friday night at Angel Montero? and April Parker?'s Luna Milonga at Daza... then a Milonga Workshop on Saturday at Plaka (4:30pm to 6pm)... then finally they will be teaching our Monday class at Plaka (8pm to 9:30pm).

They are beautiful dancers and great teachers, so don't miss this special surprise visit.

milonga.me newspaper

Site Link: http://www.milonga.me/

Join other Tango lovers and milongueras, don't miss any festivals and discover who is in - worldwide and mobile! Whether beginner or tanguero: You are welcome!

10º Campeonato de Tango de la Ciudad

Some beautiful dancing. I liked all of the couples, but the couple with the woman with the white top and the couple with the woman in the green dress are very good.

For some of my students, take a look at the posture and embrace. The women are facing the men, they don't have their heads turned to the left. They have their noses over the spines, this creates better balance. They are also not leaning on the men, no contact in the stomach. Their left arms are not up and over the mans shoulder making them tilt their upper bodies, thus throwing off their balance. If they are as tall or taller than the man then they can go up and over the shoulder. But for shorter women, don't compromise your balance for some made up idea about a proper tango embrace.

Leading and Following

Cute video with Sharna Fabiano and her partner Isaac Oboka about the roles of leading and following.

My feeling is that the term follower is much to passive, because to follow well, one must be active and engaged.  I like to think of the follower as my partner in the dance, that I happen to be leading. She is actively accompanying me, while adding her own voice. but not interfering with the direction, general rhythm, and steps that I am proposing. But notice that I say, "proposing," that is because more experienced followers CAN, from time to time, heavily influence all three of those things. 

Switching Roles: Women Leading & Men Following?

I think it can be very beneficial for leaders to learn to follow and followers to learn how to lead. Exposure to the other role is good for learning what the other person might expect from you. I think both come away with more of a respect for the other role. I don't think one role is necessarily easier or harder.. they both have unique challenges to them.

When leaders learn to follow, it makes them more aware of the necessity to be clear and decisive (but not pushy or forceful) in their movements as leaders. It also teaches them to be more patient and to give the women time to finish their steps.
I would be interested to hear what women learn about following by learning to lead. I know that some when I have talked to say that they did not realize how much women depend on men for their balance. They also learn that it feels very uncomfortable for leaders if the followers are guessing or fidgeting during the dance.
I am sure there are many more things that could be learned by switching roles.
Of course, there are other reasons for followers to learn to lead, other than becoming better followers. They might just want to learn to lead because they think they might enjoy it and we often have more women than men, so it would be a chance to dance more.

Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced Musicality

There are many differences between beginner, intermediate and advanced dancers, but one is musicality.

Beginner's step on the beat and maybe throw in some double times here and there.

Intermediate dancers change their rhythm, cadence, tiempo, energy, etc tanda to tanda depending on the orchestra being played. For example, you would not dance the same way to D'Arienzo that you would dance to Fresedo or Di Sarli. Very few dancers get to this level. I see so many people dancing exactly the same regardless of which orchestra is playing.

Advanced dancers change their rhythm, cadence, tiempo, energy, etc within the same song. There are clear shifts in most Tango songs and to be able to hear them coming and adapt your dance to them is what makes a dancer great to me.

Watch this video of Chicho and watch where he changes in energy... 22sec with the violins he goes from very energetic to much more calm and his steps get smaller and more controlled. You might even see some changes before this, but a big change again at 1.16 his energy really picks up again and he starts doing bigger and bolder moves. Around 1.57 he shifts again. Last major shift at 2.08.

BTW... To me there are two Pure Genius moments in this dance as far as musicality are concerned: The short runs at 1.10 and the foot stomps at 1.43.