It is two people embraced, walking to the rhythm of the music. There is some debate over the name “milonguero” because the use of the word is clearly broader. A “Milonguero” is every person who goes to a “milonga” and dances respecting the other couples, meaning everyone that dances a social tango. It logically follows, then, that not many “milongueros” today dance what is known as “estilo milonguero”, and that’s where the debate about using the same word for two different things arises.
When we say “estilo milonguero” we are talking about a specific social dance in which the body axes are projected slightly forward, but where each person is on his/her own axis. Only at times can it can be an option for the man to lean a bit more and then generate a shared axis. The embrace is never modified at any time during the dance. Having to dance in a restricted space produces a very close and intimate embrace with your partner, since your upper torsos are in contact most of the time. The embrace is directly linked to the music and the space. Music and space are the two pillars that create the choreography, and improvisation is totally dependent on them. This restricts but also enriches creativity in each dance. Having a very rich and creative style also means being able to dance every figure, without creating uncomfortable situations on the dance floor.
Tango milonguero and dancing tango are two sides of the same coin.
Tango is known around the world thanks to open tango, or tango danza. It is broadcast on television and on the stage of theaters, thanks to its artistic style. The figures are usually showy and easily visible, given the open embrace and great scenery display; couples move around using the stage as they please.
Tango milonguero is not very impressive to watch. Instead, its strength is in the rhythm. Space is very limited, since it is a social dance, carried out in public spaces, where one dances in the space available. Couples dance it for their own joy, not for showing off. Milongueros can dance using the whole dance floor, or they can dance on a single tile, flowing with the rhythm and the contact with the other body in a mixture of tension and emotional relaxation. The choreographies are like stories told only for the woman, and she follows the man as if she were his shirt, with great presence but without weight. The creativity of the woman relies on how well she can read and respond rhythmically to what the man proposes.
Open dance needs ballroom tango for its inspiration and ballroom tango needs open tango to be disseminated and transmitted to newer generations.
People seek to love and to be loved. The musical embrace of tango is a remedy for love, a balm for the soul and an act where the embraced man and woman share with each other, without regret, their joy and their passion.
Extract from an article published in El Tangauta.
Each class lasts 2 hours. During the first hour the students work together, switching partners (They are not required to switch if they come with a friend and do not want to), working on the basics of the walk, the music and the embrace. After a short recess the students are divided into two groups according to the levels of the class (with the exception of Monday’s class, since there is only one level) and a sequence of steps is worked out highlighting the important elements of the technique.
If you have never danced tango before, or if you have taken some classes at other schools but you do not have the basics of the “milonguero” style, we recommend starting classes on Mondays and Fridays. If you come from another school and you do not know which class would be best for you, please ask our teachers who will gladly help you.
That depends on how much you practice! Obviously you must keep in mind that every person is different and it may take you more or less time than somebody else. We recommend being patient! To be realistic we should think that we need six months both in the beginner and intermediate levels. If you feel you are prepared to change levels, talk to one of our teachers to see if they suggest the change. Taking part in our Monday practice designed specially for the Academia’s students (although it’s open to everybody) is the best way to perfect your dancing. Hours spent on classes and on the dance floor are equally important.