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Need Argentine Tango syllabus
Posted by Jjluvs2dance
12/1/2015  2:23:00 PM
What about having Argentina Tango syllabus added to the ballroomdancers.com website. Can it be done?
Re: Need Argentine Tango syllabus
Posted by t56yt56yt
12/26/2015  10:40:00 PM
I know I'd love to see this on here, and it wouldn't shock me if other dancers here do as well. In my experiance, it is very rare to dance american and internationl style outside of ballroom schools and competition. Learning the other two will give you a feel for the music and some of the steps of Argentine, but the overal position/frame and sense of time are very different from the smooth dances. I only know a tiny bit of Argentine tango, but after looking into the tango clubs around me, each one around me labels themself as an Argentine Tango club.
Re: Need Argentine Tango syllabus
Posted by terence2
12/30/2015  7:41:00 AM
Tangueros are very opposed to Syllabi of any nature, but, there is a book that lists, and also gives a breakdown , of numerous variations It's by Paul Bottomer a UK based teacher, in London ( a former T/Arg champion )...

The inherent problem with vids, is which style does one show ? Nuevo ..Milonga. Tango Waltz or just reg. T/Arg.

It's also a dance that really needs to be seen and danced, under class supervision . The nuances are quite unique, not to mention hold and frame .And be sure to seek out someone who has visited Argentina and spent time with Prof instruction .( there's many around if you, live in metro areas )

Re: Need Argentine Tango syllabus
Posted by Administrator
1/4/2016  7:09:00 PM
Hi Jj,

An Argentine Tango syllabus is not out of the question. As luck would have it, the next film shoot we have planned will focus on nightclub and social dances, including West Coast Swing, Hustle, Salsa and Lindy Hop. So it would be a great time to add some Tango as well.

The real question is whether we can put together a syllabus in time for the film shoot, and that in turn depends largely on whether we can locate the right people for the job, which includes both someone to help write the syllabus, and someone to teach on the videos. These two jobs can of course be filled by the same person or couple, but they don't have to be, and they often aren't because they require different skill sets.

The person or people who contribute to the writing of the syllabus have to be extremely practical and very good at organization and putting things into little boxes, because our approach is much more component-oriented than any other syllabus. This is good news for Argentine Tango, since it has such an emphasis on improvisation. But our high standards do make the job more difficult to fill, and in turn makes it that much less likely that we'll have a product in time for the deadline.

Finding a teacher will be equally difficult. Again, we have very high standards and very specific requirements in terms of the way people present information. It's hard enough finding dancers in the ballroom scene that can clearly present straightforward, practical, well-organized information. I fear Argentine Tango teachers may prove equally as difficult as ballroom dancers, or perhaps even moreso, due to the mysticism of Argentine Tango that seems to perpetuate in teaching circles, but I won't know for sure until I start interviewing.

This is not to say that flowery language and personalized vocabulary are strictly forbidden -- sometimes they can add memorability or even a touch of humor or lightness (and everyone to some extent should inject their own personality into their teaching on these videos), but that must be done as a layer on top of solid, simple information, and not in lieu of it. It seems like that should be easy enough to find in a dance teacher, but you'd be surprised how elusive it is, especially in this medium. I've had a number of people I though were excellent teachers in person be *very* mediocre (or worse) on video, because of how much more discipline the presentation requires.

At any rate, you can bet the process will be difficult. And that means that we may or may not make it in time for the next video shoot. In the event we don't get a full syllabus, assuming we at least find good teachers, we can always start small, with a few of the basic components (Salida, Cruzara, Ochos, etc) and build slowly from there.

So bottom line: Yes, we will now begin our search for Argentine Tango syllabus authors and instructors. But I can't make any guarantees yet as to when that material will become available on the website.

Regards,
Jonathan Atkinson
BallroomDancers.com
Re: Need Argentine Tango syllabus
Posted by Guest
1/12/2016  3:58:00 AM
I don't want to be offensive, but the very fact that you mention 'salida' in your basic components gives away the fact that what you would be likely to produce would be a ballroom oriented pastiche of the dance.

Tango is dominated, sadly, by professional performers, competitors and choreographers. There is very little work for even the best of them (and I don't deride their skills in executing choreographed stage tango for our entertainment); but social tango is a fundamentally different dance; based on the improvisational use of a different vocabulary of movement and with a different technique. Unfortunately, success, in the professional sphere, is the usual springboard for professional tango dancers to launch a teaching career.

The fundamental requirement for a good social tango dancer is to be the embodiment of musicality in response to tango dance music, and to use the vocabulary of the dance in the embrace of a partner, to reflect the music in the moment. You can't teach that online. No one can or could. Sadly, most tango teachers come from a background in which they do not (and probably never have) danced tango socially. What so often emerges is a woeful attempt to teach stage tango 'lite' to gullible students, most of whom will never join the tango dancing community. By and large, experienced tango dancers stay well away from teachers and their spheres of influence, and just dance in each others embrace, as they always have.

There is a sort of tango, danced at studio parties and in similar venues, where a few songs may be played as part of a mixed programme along with other styles. Dancers will get up and dance their moves, or worse, their routine. Teach that, if you must, but don't pretend that it is more than tangentially connected with tango.
Re: Need Argentine Tango syllabus
Posted by terence2
1/13/2016  11:39:00 PM

Well stated !
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