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Rebotes (rebounds) happen when we step in one direction, but instead of completing the step, we rebound off the leg we are stepping with in a different direction.
As always, this demo is provided as a reminder to our students about the material we covered in class. In the actual class, we discuss both women and men's technique, musicality, and navigation.
This figure demonstrated to music:
Very nice and simple graphic illustrating some of the key elements of good floorcraft for dancing Argentine Tango. There are more complex illustrations out there and feel free to post them below, but I do like the simplicity of this one.
La Pista translates loosely to "the dance floor." Another commonly used term is La Ronda (The Round) which is more closely related to "the line of dance." In other words, we dance in the line of dance (La Ronda) on the dance floor (La Pista). But these terms can be used interchangeably.
For newer (and not so new) dancers, the main things to notice in this illustration are:
- There is an outer lane, an inner lane, and the center of the dance floor. Generally, better dancers dance in the outer lane, but may sometimes use the inner lane as well, but rarely the center of the floor. It should be noted, that not all dance floors are large enough for these 3 areas. For example, at our milongas (Plaka and 57th), there is really only room enough for an outer lane and a center of the dance floor.
- The outer lane should be wider than what is represented in the illustration. My opinion is that it should be approximately two body widths. You do need room to move a little sideways to execute ochos and basic turns. So, the inner lane or those dancing in the center, should not crowd the outer lane. Too often, dancers straddle the outer and inner lanes.
- Dancers should stay in their lane during an entire song. If you are forced from the outer lane into the middle lane, you should stay there until the song ends and only then move back to the outer lane. It is considered very bad manners to constantly switch lanes during a song.
- Dancers should generally enter the dance floor at the corner's, unless it is an oddly shaped dance floor. Leader's entering the floor should attempt to make eye contact with the leader that they are entering the floor in front of. That leader should then nod or indicate approval for the couple to enter the floor in front of them. You do not have to do this if there is plenty of room for you to enter the dance floor without getting in anyone's way, but this is rarely the case on a crowded dance floor. This also means that leader's need to have their heads up when dancing and paying attention, especially when near a corner, so that they can acknowledge couples wanting to enter La Ronda. (Organizers: Do not put tables in the corner, that is where people need to cue up to enter the dance floor.)
- Avoid going backwards against the line of dance. A small back step is generally acceptable, but it should be small and preferably after you have first moved forward. What is unacceptable is taking large or multiple back steps against the line of dance. It is especially unacceptable for leaders to be facing against the line of dance and moving forward. I often say that the leader behind me should never be able to focus on my face. The only time he sees my face should be as it is in motion turning. It should never stop and move towards him.
- This is not in the illustration, but is one that I see more and more. Do not walk across the dance floor if people have already started dancing. Organizers can help with this by making sure that there is space behind the tables for walking, if at all possible.
Click here for more about Floorcraft and General Milonga Etiquette.
The Last Coffee
lyrics by Cátulo Castillo
?music by Héctor Stamponi
Your memory touches down like a tornado,
the autumn sun begins to set again
I watch the drizzle, and as I watch
the spoon stirs in the coffee…
In the last coffee
that your lips coldly
ordered that time
in a sighing voice.
Visit Poesía de Gotán: The Poetry of Tango to see the rest of the lyrics.
Juan D’Arienzo (December 14, 1900-January 14, 1976) was a violinist, pianist, band leader and composer. His nickname was “El Rey del Compás” (The King of the Beat). D’Arienzo was born on December 14th, 1900 in the Buenos Aires neighborhood of Balvanera. His orchestra is considered one of the "Big Four" orchestras of Argentine tango.
Part 1: Introduction and Early Career (1900 to 1934)
Part 2: Tango Cancíon and The Guardia Nueva: The Lead Up to D'Arienzo
Part 3: The D'Arienzo Revolution (1935 to 1939)
Part 4: Re-Invention and the Final Years (1940 to 1975)
Part 5: References and Resources
We had a great time on our Tango Cruise to the Bahamas in February. 48 of us tango dancers left from Charleston, South Carolina on a 5 day cruise to the Bahamas. We danced every night and had workshops on the days that the ship was at sea.
Here are some of the photos: