Showing posts from September, 2011

Ask a stranger to dance - please

This is a plea to Sydney's tangueros! Here we are in the middle of a Festival that has brought tangueras from far and wide and we really need to show them a touch of how friendly Sydneysiders can be. This is not Buenos Aires - it is Sydney - and we have some of the best tango dancers here teaching us - and performing for us and a wonderful opportunity to embrace the community.
Last night a visiting tanguera, who is a beautiful dancer, told me sadly that she would love to dance with some of the men she did not know - but that they did not seem to be asking! And a FB friend remarked that last year Sydneysiders were noticeable in their cliquishness! and his friends weren't going this year because of it!
So I am hoping that some of the men are reading Angelina as they get ready for tonight's milonga - with the bandoneonist Joaquin Amenabar and his musicians - and will ask a stranger for a dance...

Sydney - a town of tango cynics?

Sunday night was a horrible night - weatherwise. The temperature dropped something like 16 degrees (C), it was windy and wet - and the previous day it had been a balmy, sunny spring day... great for the charity running the Stay in Bed all day fundraiser, but not great for the Milonga Para Los Ninos fundraiser. Just over 70 people turned up for the event held at the Marrickville Hard Court Tennis Club which has one of the best dance floors in Sydney.
The door price was a bit high too - is that the reason barely half the number turned up as came last time Sydney did this event? Noticeable in their absence were a few of the bigger tango schools and a couple of the smaller ones (though one, A Little Buenos Aires had the flu, so their absence is understandable,  where was the school run by one of Sydney's one-time tango champions?)
Organising a tango event for charity has a mixed reception in Sydney and this event showed just how cynical Sydneysiders can be - even when two of the wor…

What makes a Wonderful Playlist

Last night at the Milonga de Mis Amores we were treated to the music of my Favourite Tango DJ. This person has been my mentor since I began djing out of necessity (you can't run a milonga without a DJ!) and it was a very steep learning curve at the beginning and one that I keep climbing. He played tandas with many of what he calls the 'top pops'  - but that is what people want to dance to. And he is extremely generous with his playlist, putting a copy on each table. It is not set in stone though, if changes are needed because of time or birthday dances - that happens easily.
My Favourite DJ has music I don't have - and he probably has the most extensive collection of Canaro in Australia, having spent a number of years seeking out all the music of Francisco Canaro from a particular period, then making sure he has it.
He is also quite playful (!) with the music - last night he included two popular pieces twice - the first was 'Silueta Portena' - one of the best m…

The Tango Dress

With the Big Sydney Tango Salon Festival only days away I am probably among many (women) wondering what to wear. I can't wear what I wore last year (can I?) I can't wear what I wore last week to the milonga at City Tatts - or last month to the milonga at the Russian Club... (no question)... and the tango budget is Tight. What with spending most of my tango income on updating the TangoAustralia website and buying CDs there is little left for a dress - and nothing for shoes.
Last night my tango friend,  Miss Willow and I pondered the dilemma of dressing for tango. We both love the elegant fashions of the 1920s and 1930s, the long dropped waists and hems and the elegant slinky look - and I love the turbans (though I have only one to tango one or twice).  I love the longer hemlines - I wouldn't wear a dress that came half way up my thighs to tango even if I could, they lack the necessary elegance and are more suited to salsa!  The beading and feathers that were fashionable I al…

Fabian and Lorena are coming to Sydney

And I can't wait! These two are superb dancers and excellent teachers. They will be here for the fundraiser - The Milonga Para Los Niños on Sunday September 26 (the day after our Milonga de Mis Amores at Gladesville) and will be staying here for almost 2 weeks so they can be part of the faculty of the Sydney Tango Salon Festival. . We have published a brief interview with both Fabian and Lorena - which we did by email a couple of weeks ago - on TangoAustralia. . If you are still wondering whether you will come to the Festival - or do any workshops - consider the opportunity to see and learn from these two remarkable dancers. Below is a video of a performance at Club Sunderland, one of Buenos Aire's most well-known milongas. Here they are dancing to the absolutely beautiful 'Invierno' played by Francisco Canaro with cantor Roberto Maida.

Tango Cup or Tango Championships - the results are in

It's over for another year! The Tango Championships, now known as the Tango Cup have been won. The Salon by a Colombian couple Diego Julian Nenavidez Hernandez and Natasha Agudelo Arboleda from Colombia after a tie-breaker with a Venezuelan couple, and the Stage by an Argentinian couple, Max Van De Voorde, and Solange Acosta.

Until this competition gets itself a set of rules like the Soccer World Cup, or the Rugby Cup or, the Blackpool Dance Festival - and a committee which has to answer for not following these rules, it is likely that it will continue to be fraught with accusations of bias and mismanagement - but that doesn't take away the magic. Even though I knew that the dancing had been choreographed, and even though I was just watching it on my laptop, I got goosebumps from the performances!
You can read a really good, balanced account of the whole event up to the winning of the Salon Tango Championship, aptly titled 'The Only Champion is Tango',  on Cherie'…