[Tango-L] Help Newbies Dance in Tight Spaces

Alexis Cousein al at sgi.com
Fri Feb 15 14:15:17 EST 2008

Tango For Her wrote:
> It just seems that the two discussions, “walk, walk,
> walk” and “the basic-8” are just spending a lot of
> time just defending or breaking down these teaching
> styles.  Those teacing methods already exist and new
> leaders still have nightmares when they get out to the
> milongas.

Because what you have to learn is navigation and improvisation,
and whether you teach using the 8CB as a coat hanger or
by teaching to walk doesn't change a thing about that.

Actually, the first step in teaching people not to march
on regardless of anything is to teach them to listen to
the music - and to act on it, rather than their own
impulse to always move on.

After all, tango music ain't a military march for a reason.

Some music obviously lends itself to teaching this aspect
of the dance better than other. I think it's a disservice to
beginners to insist on *only* playing instrumental music with a
very clear beat and no long arching phrases, certainly if you
want to make thgem aware of the fact tango is slightly more
rich than a fat Nubian slave beating the drums on a Roman

And you have to teach them to fill the "stepless" time and
be aware of what is happening (it's a fallacy to think
that if you don't step "nothing happens", but it's not
*obviously* wrong to beginners). They'll be more patient
on a crowded dance floor if they're having fun in place than if
they're just constantly itching to move on when they have
nowhere to go.

Alexis Cousein                                  al at sgi.com
Senior Systems Engineer/Solutions Architect     SGI/Silicon Graphics
<If I have seen further, it is by standing on reference manuals>

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