If you’re new to Tango you may not have seen the classic Salon style of Argentine Tango. Perhaps you have been inspired by a Tango show or Strictly Come Dancing; maybe you have seen or danced Ballroom Tango. They’re all called “Tango” but there are big differences between all these Tango “cousins”. Here you can watch and compare some of the different styles of Tango
Firstly, Argentine tango in the Salon style, which is intended for dancing Tango socially at a Milonga and is suitable for all ages. It’s what it feels like for the dancers themselves that matters, rather than what it looks like to an audience. These are improvised dances, not pre-prepared choreographies, the dancers relying on their connection and understanding. This is the style we teach and aspire to.
Peter & Jennifer
Two birthday dances for Jennifer (2011 & 2012). Not intended as performances, just our usual, improvised dances:
A simple Tango to Canaro’s Poema, taken in a break between classes:
Secondly a Vals. The music, not an Argentine Vals, but one of Jennifer’s favourites, is O Mio Babbino Caro, from Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi:
Jennifer pioneered the now increasingly popular role for experienced Followers who want to learn how to lead. We have always been keen to promote the twin arts of Leading and Following which are so close to our hearts. Here are Jennifer and Andrea Wellbellove at the end of a class during summer 2012:
Los Mareados, the ever popular UK based tango band, joined by Peter, in a version of Libertango (Piazzolla) from our New Year Ball, January 2012l.
Not exactly classic Tango de Salon but great fun none the less:
Hablame De Amores Mariú, Beautiful singing by Pam Osborne, accompanied by Peter
Some You Tube examples of Argentine Tango by other dancers, in a typical Salon style:
Here are Pipe Zarzar and Mamie Sancy – wonderfully expressive Tango De Salón:
Another example, slightly more elaborate, exquisitely danced by Julio Balmaceda and Corina de la Rosa:
Pushing the boundaries of what would be acceptable at a typical Milonga, and yet one of the most wonderful examples of modern Argentine Tango, here are Pablo Veron and Geraldine Rojas in the closing credits from the film Assassination Tango:
The next two clips are what we would call Show Tango, usually a choreographed performance by trained professional dancers – visually beautiful and spectacular with elaborate and often acrobatic movements. Their balletic and dramatic quality make them great to watch but not suitable for dancing Tango socially. We do not teach or encourage this style of dancing.
The first performance includes Tango elements, but they are combined with lifts and high kicks which are definitely not Salon style! Interestingly, the music on this clip – To Tango Tis Nefalis – is a Greek song. It is very popular with Tango dancers, although some would argue it is not “real” Tango music at all.
Another good example of Show Tango – an exciting performance from Strictly Come Dancing, by the well known and immensely popular Vincent & Flavia:
And finally, here is Ballroom Tango. Best thought of as a totally different dance, although it is danced socially as well as competitively: