[Tango-L] The Challange in Teaching Newbies [Was Breaking the 'paso basico']

Stephen.P.Brown@dal.frb.org Stephen.P.Brown at dal.frb.org
Tue Feb 12 12:35:13 EST 2008

Tom Stermitz wrote:
>On a social dance floor, the 8CB w/DBS is COMPLETELY non functional.
>When you are social dancing, you have to break the pattern every two 
>steps, so why bother to learn a useless pattern.

The challenge in teaching newcomers/beginners is in providing some 
semblance of success in dancing tango while providing a foundation for 
future learning.  The 8CB w/ or wo/DBS isn't helpful at all on either 
front.  It is more like an obstacle that one must overcome to show a 
desire to learn.  It shifts learning from an integrated mind/body 
experience linked to the music to a mostly intellectual experience that is 
disconnected from the music.

Even when the 8CB is mastered, its execution creates all kinds of 
navigational problems because the beginner who has mastered it wants to go 
through the entire sequence whether there is room or not.  The DBS adds to 
navigational problems.

For most learners, tango is best taught to beginners in small elements 
that can be executed rhythmically.  It gets them moving to the music.  The 
small elements can be combined to provide a taste of improvisation right 
from the beginning.

With best regards,

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