I’ll come clean.

I did not ‘fall in love with tango music at first sight’. I’ve hear many stories that went like ‘I was walking in the street, heard beautiful music, entered… and the rest is history’. Not me.

I’d been brought up on French oldies and classical music, with rare forays into American blues, so at first traditional Argentine music was a big shock to me. I couldn’t relate to the melody, I didn’t understand the rhythm, I didn’t know which instrument I should dance on…

So I spent my first tango years in alternative milongas dancing on tango Nuevo. It was close enough to the clubbing style I was used to and I felt that I least there I could express myself (I actually romanticised dancing tango on any Counting Crows* cover but never found any DJ who shared my musical dreams…)

Thankfully, I’ve grown and my musical tastes have evolved

And once I started sharing my life with a born and bred milonguero I understood the beauty of traditional tango music. Not that I don’t believe that alternative music doesn’t have its place in the Tango world: there’s actually a lovely tango night in London with cool live music if you happen to visit!

But really… really… what power and emotion traditional tango music transmits! What strength, what lightness, what softness.  Today, I now feel incredibly blessed to get the chance to dance on so rich a music every week. The subtleties, the infinite possibilities for embellishments, the beautiful changes of dynamics… it’s all so good! How did I not notice at first?

For anyone interested on how to express themselves on tango music

So, even though Pablo and Naomi  have a much simpler approach to the music, we’ve decided to record this video on Tango music, and how to express it. For anyone interested on how to express themselves on tango music.

The first step in breaking down musicality is understanding how to architecture our movements.

>In the following video Pablo and Naomi discuss rhythmic vs. curvy movements: when do we walk and when do we start doing figures?

>They also show music chapters, and how to play with the dynamics tango has to offer.

Psssttt…. Because I’m writing from a  follower’s standpoint, I can assure you that the women too need to work on their musicality. We are as responsible as the men for making sure that a movement finishes at the end of the musical phrase, and that we go back to the line of dance to start a new one. We are as responsible of the men for giving a “color” or dynamic to our movements. So ladies… make it yours and enjoy!

Once you’d had a chance to watch, we’d love your thoughts…

Do you have an special tips you can give to someone trying to understand tango music? Any thoughts on how dancers can express themselves and have fun playing with musicality?

We’re very grateful for any comments you’d like to share!

Abrazos,

Anne

 

PS: you can find out more about our online video course here.

7 thoughts on “Tango Musicality and Expression

  1. Warren Edwardes says:

    I have attended 20+ tango schools in London. But beyond “beginners” they want to teach ever more complex set sequences / routines. Even or perhaps especially when they have visiting master classes by maestros.

    Choreography is my job as a leader. This 12 minute video is more valuable than the 100 ++ hours of classes I’ve attended over the 3+ years of my tango life.

    Keep it up. Even if the mass market perhaps prefers out-of-the-box set routines.

  2. HECTOR ESPINOSA says:

    Hello Anne, Pablo and Naomi,

    Im so glad to be able to see, read and learn from your post lots of point that I think are missing in the many classes I have attended as pointed also by Warren, All this missing points in my opinion are the essence for a good tango dancer leader and followers.

    Im loving your site ! ! !

    Hugs

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