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ASPEN TANGO

 

 

FIRST DOCUMENTED IN THE LATE 1800S IN BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINE TANGO IS A SOCIAL DANCE FROM ARGENTINA. IT IS AN IMPROVISATIONAL PARTNER DANCE WITH VERY SPECIFIC SUPPORTING ROLES OF LEAD AND FOLLOW. THESE ROLES CONNECT IN TANGO LIKE A LOCK AND KEY TO CREATE BLISSFUL CONNECTION, MUSICALITY, ART AND FLOW, WITH IN A COMMUNITY OF LIKE DANCING COUPLES. 

 

 

 

 

Each class will have the elements of:

 
 
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Musicality:

  • TIMING: Walking on the downbeat, breaks and pauses, the half beat, slow time and the sincopa
  • TEXTURE: Rythmic, melodic, role play and adornos
  • ORCHESTRA FAMILIES

Connection:

  • ROLES: Learn the intricacies of both the role of the Leader and the role of the Follower
  • LISTENING: Learn connecting exercises to build trust and structure
  • SHARING: Learn to lead with respect and certainty
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Movement Vocabulary & Tools:

  • TRAVELING & PIVOTING
  • TURNING or JIROS
  • STOPPING, SWEEPING or PARADAS, BARRIDAS
  • FREE LEG MOVEMENT 
  • EXPANSION & COMPRESSION
  • PERFORMANCE
 
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Technique:

  • PRACTICE: Leg Extension, Posture, Collection, Changeable Proximity Embraces, Pivoting, Grapevine etc for class and home practice

Social Etiquettes or Codigas:

  • CONTEXT: El Cabaceo, Line of Dance, Tandas, Social Expectations and Protocols etc
 

Important Information for All:

 

LOCATION: Classes are arranged in 5 week sessions and take place predominantly at the Aspen Red Brick Dance Studio at 110 Hallam St. (corner of Hallam and Garmisch streets - please park on the street and not in the parking lot).

OFFERING: At no extra charge: Beginners may take their 1.5 hour class and stay to watch or participate in the following Experienced Level class with someone at their own level; Experienced dancers are encouraged to come early to warm up and refine their technique in the previous beginning class and are asked to respectfully assist when appropriate. All dancers are expected to participate in the technique drills between the two classes in order to progress in balance, strength and agility. All class participants are welcome to attend the practica following classes. Experienced dancers will be asked to show a step for all to learn from as part of the traditional practica experience; experienced dancers, please come prepared to offer your idea. 

CONSIDERATIONS: All classes are meant to be taken in order and build off each other, but students with experience may take them out of order if teacher agrees student is prepared. Each class will connect via technique drills. All Salon classes start with a Beginners class with an idea that the Experienced class takes further; music will focus on a diff orchestra/era each class. Weekly class descriptions are given out days prior to each class via email and often including video or musical drills.

RECOMMENDATIONS: The Complete Beginning Class and Salon Traffic are recommended prerequisites before taking any other classes. But On-Going Beginners may take any series. Experienced dancers are encouraged to attend both the beginners and their own class weekly. The Salon Tango classes will all start with fundamentals that beginners to advanced dancers need to know for all social dancing and will advance in the following Experienced class to where that basic concept leads us. The 5th class in each series will be devoted to practical combinations including concepts from previous classes.


ASPEN TANGO CURRICULUM:

FOR COMPLETE BEGINNERS PLUS THOSE INTERESTED IN MILONGERO BASICS:

EXAMPLE BELOW: COMPLETE BEGINNING MILONGERO STYLE TANGO CLASS IN WEEKLY DETAIL.

WEEK 1

A. Find the down beat and the breaks

B: Listen and pay attention to each other. Frame-introduce resistance & connection – find boundaries

C: Lead and Follow. Open step, Front and Back steps –Traveling in all directions. Line of dance. 

D: Posture, leg extension, collection

E: Line of Dance, stay to the outside

WEEK 2

A: Review and find the half beats (quick quicks)

B: Review and practice Satellite exercise

C: Rock Steps and Leader Rock Turn to the left, Rock Step turn to the left

D: Fully change weight but have back knee bent-front leg straight, use hips, disassociate upper body from lower, Follower keep back leg extended

E: Cabaceo and where to enter the dance floor

WEEK 3

A: Review walking on downbeat, breaks and the quick quicks

B: Listen and Lift

C: Back Ochos exiting into Crusada

D: Leader changes systems from Parallel/Crossed etc via relaxing lower body and Follower relaxes in the back steps and Stays in front of the Leader

E. Thank you and Take Follower back to where you found her

WEEK 4

A: Review and quick quick slow/ quick quick slow

B: Without arms practice

C: Media Luna and Ocho Cortado

D: Leader/Follower Disassociation

E: Tandas Explained

 

WEEK 5

A: Quick quick slow quick quick  and find the slow

B: Keep hips facing each other-changeable embrace

C: Media Vuelta

D: Jiro practice

E: Community

 

Great for complete and on-going beginners & Experienced Dancers:

Example Salon Traffic Class in weekly descriptions:

Beginning - Experienced

I. Traffic Salon Tango Sequencing (Tools from crusadas for beginners - to single axis turns for experienced dancers)

6:30-7:45 pm Beginning Class – 7:45-9 pm Experienced Class

WEEK 1) Walk to the Crusada in 16 counts – Simple side step single axis turn

WEEK 2) Front Ochos – Changes of direction from the front ocho

WEEK 3) Parada/Pasada – With Single Axis turns

WEEK 4) Sandwichito – from any angle with added single axis turns

WEEK 5) Variations- Combinations and Review

 

Subsequent 5-week series will be on these subjects:

NOTE: Each 6:30-7:45 class is open to on-going beginners and experienced dancers as assistants to the beginners; Each 7:45-9 class is open to all Experienced dancers to dance with partners at their own level

II Salon Tango Sequencing TURNS (Tools for jiros to enrosques to sacadas)

III. Salon Tango BOLEOS to lead and follow (Tools for free leg movement)

IV. Salon Tango GANCHOS to lead and follow (wraps and hooks)

V. VOLCADAS (inward off-axis movement)

VI. COLGADAS (outward off-axis movement)

VI. ENGANCHES (walk through ganchos)

VII. SOLTADAS (breaking and spinning out of the embrace)

VIII. SHADOW Tango (back to front embrace)

 

OTHER SERIES WILL BE:

X. MILONGA

Y. VALS

Z. CHOREOGRAPHY

 
 
 
 
 
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About Argentine Tango

 

TANGO USES SPECIFIC SOCIAL STRUCTURES THAT GIVE US THE FREEDOM TO PRACTICE BEING IN INTIMACY WITH ANOTHER PERSON IN SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE WAYS. IT ALLOWS US TO BE FULLY PRESENT TO ANOTHER HUMAN, TEACHING US WHAT IT FEELS TO BE RESPECTED, CARED FOR, SUPPORTED AND MOVE IN FLOW WITH ANOTHER PERSON. THIS GODFATHER OF ALL SOCIAL AND BALLROOM DANCES, ALLOWS THE INDIVIDUAL TO FULLY EXPERIENCE THE ROLES OF LEADER OR FOLLOWER, WHICH CAN RICHLY TRANSLATE INTO THE MASCULINE AND FEMININE ROLES WE INHABIT IN OUR MORE PERSONAL INTIMATE RELATIONSHIPS.

THE LEADER GETS TO PRACTICE BEING THE FOUNDATION, THE STRENGTH, THE PROVIDER AND DRIVER WHILE THE FOLLOWER GETS TO PRACTICE BEING THE STAR OF THE SHOW, A LOVING AND CARING MUSE. THE TWO TOGETHER LEARN TO FLOW IN HARMONY AROUND THE DANCE FLOOR OF OTHER SUCH COUPLES ALSO PRACTICING THESE SAME ASPECTS OF THEIR ROLES. 

TANGO IS AN ARTFUL PARTNER PRACTICE THAT TEACHES THE ACTUAL LISTENING AND IMPROVISATION NEEDED IN ALL RELATIONSHIPS.

 
 
 
I aim to teach dance students how to connect to themselves, to their partners and to their community.

Right from the start, we begin by respectfully stretching our energetic connecting abilities all while practicing core respectful improvisation.

Tango is learned like a language or a martial art, by first learning small common introductory phrases and then adding more vocabulary and grammar along the way. Specific tango Tools are added to give students more colors and textures to add creatively to their dance. Technique is practiced to continually shape our bodies, hearts and minds to the discipline and openness of the dance.

Please come to learn, connect and practice with us!
— Heather Morrow
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