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August 29, 2007

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Trendy Palermo Viejo

Hi Deby, how are you doing? You appeared on Clarín's magazine today! Cool! Saludos.

Carlos

I don't suppose it ever occurred to you that you are part of the problem. You and the other people like you who spend your days at the computer screen broadcasting to anyone who will listen what a great, glamorous life it is. On your blogs and on Tango-L. Maybe you all need the attention. Maybe it's money thing. Who knows. But I assure you, sweetie, you are part of the problem. They say we always kill the things we love, and all of you bloggers seem determined to prove it.

Tanya

While I'm sure that you are right about the decline in quality of social dancing, I believe tango, as in any art form, must constantly change in order to avoid becoming static, a quaint relic from the past. Some of these changes will be for the worse, temporarily, but I can't help but think that tango's new worldwide popularity, the fact that dancers can make a living from tango, can only be a positive for the future of the dance we all love.

Thanks, as always, for the thoughtful and heartfelt commentary.

Colin

Nice post and interesting to read through and learn so much more as I know so little about that Tango....this has opened my eyes, Thank you.

Marvin J.

Hola Deby, It has been a year since I was in BAires, but I returned from that first trip with some appreciation for what "Good Tango" required from the leader and an idea of what I needed to do to improve my dance. I think there are milongueros, about our age, evolving who focus on quality of lead rather than quantity of steps. But I mostly took lessons from dancers who didn't speak English so my experience may have been atypical. Back home I have worked with teachers who can help me develop the skills which will, hopefully, make me a better dancer and they have the patience to persevere as long as I am willing to do my part. It is slow going at times working to develop a solid lead and overcome habits which detract from clearly conveying one's intention to the follower.
So I think there are milongueros developing now but they may be obscured by those who are clamoring for the tourista's dollar and maybe they have found milongas to attend which cost less. Anyway I hope to return in the not too distant future and share good times with Horacio at "No Me Olvides" and get some shoes from Jorge at Bottier and I promise not to complain about the prices. Take care, Hope you feel better soon. MJ

Tina

I agree with you when you say that the word "milonguero" gets tossed around so flippantly. Up here people think they are "milongueros" just because they dance close embrace. It's all Mi Amor and I can do not to roll our eyes. Sure there is a style to it but there is SO much more to it than just that.

I've decided that I feel a lttle more optimistic about social Tango.

I don't think the true spirit of Tango can ever die... but the dance is definitely going through a "blip."

caroline

I'm not of the same dim and grim viewpoint. Tango is far more popular now than it was even only 10 years ago. On one hand, this does change the landscape of social tango but I don't see this as being permanent but instead as a ripple in time. Once the fervor settles down, then it will be back more or less to normal. History tells me that tango has gone through this many times in the past and yet it persevered rather dogmatically. Optimistically, we may just have to ride out the wave till the worldwide craze calms down. Like Cherie said, once the new generation gets older, they will change from follies of youth to wisdom of age. What I find curious though is that I hear about old milongueros and young flashy tangueros and neotangueros, what about the generation in between? Who are they? Or is there an actual gap?

Cherie

Excellent post, Deby!

I'm really glad you pointed out these things to foreign readers who have no idea.

I'm a little more optimistic in that I see social tango changing but not dying. The hordes of young people who now fill dance halls all over the world bring energy and new blood to our favorite dance. They will be old one day and yearn for the tango embrace and connection; for now they invigorate it and keep it alive.

If tango didn't die during the horrible period of government suppression and (no relation) the overwhelming influence of rock 'n roll, it never will.

Pieter

I know nothing about Tango.But I can feel your genuine sadness and melancholy. As if you have lost someone you loved very much.I find that beautiful. You must be an amazing Milonguera. How I wish I could just watch you dance.
Pieter

Janis Kenyon

I agree that the biggest change I've seen during eight years in BsAs has been in the level of dancing. It's going downhill and fast. There is no respect for others on the floor or the codes. Everyone does as they please. Tango is turning into big business for teachers and others who are connected to the tourist market. I see a dim future for tango as a social dance.

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Have you ever dreamed about running away from home and starting a new life? I did just that. In 2004 I sold everything I owned to move to Buenos Aires. I first came to dance tango and I stayed because I fell in love with Argentina.

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