Thursday, May 27, 2004

An Illusion

We had our tango workshop with Luciana Valle tonight. She said a lot of interesting things. A lot of philosophical stuff which is the essence behind such dances as the tango, which would have been easy to miss if one were not paying attention and really listening to what she was saying.

Tango is a social dance. It's for the two of you, not for the outside. It's not for show, even in performances, it's for the two people dancing together, and it's still a social dance.

(Which means that tango is almost the opposite of what many people think it is. It comes from the inside, of the self and between the dance partners, not the outside. Trying to learn technique and steps can only go so far.) She commented on pretentious lead dancers as well.

Toe.. heel.. it doesn't matter. She emphasized having weight straight down, shoulders over hips over feet, never locking the knees, having balance in the middle of your feet, not sticking out the butt or the stomach, elongating that part of the lower torso, the push-pull between legs of the follower's walking movement, moving the leg first and then the body, the opposite for the lead, the illusion of long legs, and the togetherness of the lead and follower's movements.

Break his heart with every cross. She described the movement between lead and follow like "No.. no.. no.. no... okay.." (Hm.. I think I'm good at that part.. hehe)

She said many times that "it's an illusion." It's an illusion. I think this was in reference to where your weight is on the supporting leg while the other leg is free and extended, but probably has some larger significance as well, which a two hour class was not enough to understand.

She also used a lot of interesting, and funny, metaphors. Like peeing...! Leading like a vacuum. The sound of the movement, flowing.