May 8, 2010
Sometimes I go to a milonga and I cannot find tango. I only see people doing steps, but there is no emotional involvement and emotional connection between them. Everybody is busy doing steps. They think they are dancing tango, but there is no tango.
Just like words and punctuation marks are not an essay but tools we use to write an essay, steps and footwork are not tango but tools we use to dance tango. Tango is a feeling or mood. It lies in the emotional connection between a man and a woman when they dance. This mood occurs only when they both connect to the music. It does not usually happen between beginners who do not know the music and are not technically and emotionally ready for the dance. That is why mature dancers prefer to dance with an equal partner. The two partners feel an emotional connection between them when they both know and connect to the music. In that moment they are no longer two persons, but one, sympathetic to each other's feeling and body language, stirred by the music to do what the music inspires them. Only in that moment they find tango.
To experience tango, you need to be emotionally involved. You need to know the music well and respond to it intuitively. You need to emotionally connect to your partner, be sensitive to his/her response to the music. And, of course, you need a compatible partner who can connect equally well to you and the music. Nobody experiences tango all the time, at every milonga and with every partner. But once you experience it you will want to experience it again and again. It impacts your soul. It is magic and unforgettable.
Posted by Paul Yang