Tuesday, November 19, 2013

What are our favorites telling us?

A few months ago a friend asked me at a milonga which are my favorite tango couples. A tornado of names rushed through my head and I must admit that to come down to a handful of names was impossibly. The question was though anchored in my mind and every now and then some names were floating up to my awareness before disappearing again. I started curiously follow the process when a couple of names took positions compared to others, absolutely and relatively until I today can present the shortest list during these weeks and months.

I ask you to pay attention to the fact that this list doesn’t have numbers, but the order seems to be important for me – I do not clearly know why, but this is the only order my soul allows me to write them. In that way this list or anyhow the reasons for this order are secret, even to me.

So this is not a list about who is the best dancer in the world, but a list which tells something about my deepest thoughts and feelings for tango.  These names represent the tips of icebergs of my tango values and appreciations.

Here are the couples for time being stated by my unconscious heart:

Sebastian and Mariana
Charlitos and Noelia
Chicho and Juana
Javier and Noelia

And here you have my thoughts when I let my brain to form some ideas about this list:

Sebastian and Mariana
They have been the starting couple at all stages of this list. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that they have been working together so long time, having had the time to know each other and creating a stable cooperation, partnering. The most astonishing aspect in their performances is the glowing elegance as no one else’s today! I noticed that I prefer to write performance to dance – must indicate a lot.

Charlitos and Noelia
Their musicality blows my brain! They are outstanding and even a video with them can make me cry certain days!

Chicho and Juana
Chicho is the King of rhythmic tango!  He is also a kind of renaissance person being a musician and painter too.

And Juana is a sweet partner with the toughness needed to dance with Chicho. I have chosen this clip because it shows so clearly the first one! Some other clips show how she gets focused when music starts.

(Jump to 40s and whatch for some time)

Javier and Noelia
Javier is one of the few dancers who does move my heart live on the pista as well as on video. His ability to create an elegant dance is fantastic.
Noelia did grow to her new role extremely fast! On the first video from March 2013 she was still dancing kind of Nuevo movements but already in Seoul in May she had found the way and I just love them in this video from Tylösand in June.

The consequences for me then!
If one my deepest values is elegance I maybe should start to think the surface of my own dance body! Leave those pieces of training cloths and gymnastic shoes at home and start to think of how the clothing could support a more elegant look! Or how should I think about my steps, how to choose the ones giving my dance a better look?
Am I showing respect to the music? If I would give a more focused value for the music – could it give a different experience to my partner too?

How about you?
I sincerely recommend you to let your heart and soul work on this question for weeks and I think you can get some surprising ideas, when you review the results!

Who are your favorite dancers? Which couples keep you watching their dance again and again?

What are the values you find when thinking of the reasons for these choices you made?

Are there some consequences for your dance too?


A video in line with this posting

I just couldn't resist because I found this video extremely inspiring!
(If this link is not working try those below)

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Finnish tango 100 years today!

The  2nd November 1913
is the clearly stated  date for the start of tango in Finland. That day a Danish couple/three French couples had a dance performance at a restaurant in Helsinki presenting the newest steps from Paris; the Tango!

There are some others claiming that the tango was presented earlier by a Finnish dancer and the fact that music came earlier sounds reasonable too.

This early succes was not enough to establish the tango in the whole nation and it took years, until the second world war to hit to the roots of the Finnish soul. It is said that when the Argentine tango was combined with the Slavic romances and coloured by German march rhythms the whole country did open their hearts to this new music.

This is the result! Filmed at the Frostbite festival February 2013.

Here you find a palylist for some popular tangos and tango singers!

no Milongas but Dance evenings!
There is not specific tango evenings but tango is one dance among the 8-12 other kind of dances during an evening. This is the case even for the biggest tango gatherings in the country - Tangomarkkinat - which has around 100 000 visitors during a weekend. Two tangos, 8 other dances (two same kind of songs for each)  and then tango again even there!

no YouTube but Competitions!
It has been nearly impossibly to find any clips in youtube and Finns don't post anything today either. The clips on line are posted by foreigners mostly by johnofbristol. In Finland the feedback is received from judges in the countless competitions! Here a posting from a competition, semifinals:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5BqKCFLIic

How it was to grow up with this kind of tango?
The feeling now is that I was virtually surrounded by tango, but not actually.

New York times has visited the Tangomarkkinat, the Finnish festival.

A blog posting at Tango Voice - Finnish Tango is worth reading if you like details too!

Neatherland Radio is talking for 30 mins about the tango and tango history in Finland.
What is the difference between A and F tango? If you kill your wife's lover can you sing about it?

John Wards blog gives you a continuous contact to the Finnish tango culture; enjoy!

If you plan to visit Finland, you can find the tango information in Face Book: https://www.facebook.com/groups/5555248820/?fref=ts