Let’s be honest, people watching is one of the great pleasures of tango. Sitting just next to the dance-floor, a glass of wine in hand, listening to beautiful music, and looking at the dancers. Eyes glued to the feet and the fancy leg work. Head down, in your own world: Not very good for cabeceo but soooo enjoyable.
Sometimes I spot a lady: graceful, sexy, elegant…she’s clearly been dancing for a while and she’s in control of her movements. When she dances, I’m mesmerised, not by her legs but by her whole body.
And I notice that she sits down a lot. So I go see Pablo and ask him: There is this amazing dancer, she LOOKS SO GOOD, you should SO dance with her (I’m happy to share)
Usually he doesn’t see who I’m talking about but he’s happy about this new marvel that I’m promising. He looks at the dance floor: where?
There, her! Beautiful!
Aaaah… He’s disappointed. ‘I’ve danced with her already. She looks good but dancing with her doesn’t feel as good as it looks’
So that is the answer about why she’s sitting so much. No matter how beautiful she looks, dancing with her is not fun for her partners. Either she’s heavy and needs the man to drag her around or, more probably, she is dancing alone – so focused on what she looks like for the rest of the milonga/for the watchers that she’s not listening to her partners…
That’s why, after hearing this so many time, I’ve been focused on how I feel. Which is not as easy as it sounds because forgetting that people is watching is difficult. It meant taking loads of technique classes, and making the choice when I dance that I would be connecting with my partners for real.
Not so easy but well worth the try…