El Código – The Tango Codes

Lucruri care mi s-au parut foarte interesante, unele le stiam, dar tot le-am citit cu sufletul la gura si le-am savurat pana la sfarsit. Chiar la ultima milonga intrebasem pe cineva despre milongile din Buenos Aires, si in parte am gasit povestile lui in materialul de mai jos, gasit undeva pe net:

“The tango codes... they are like the head of the cod fish , everyone talk bout it, and nobody has seen one, ever...

I tried to get information, but I found elusive attitudes here in Buenos Aires, with old milongueros/as. They simply said "tango codes are to be respected" and that was it, end of the conversation.

After 10 years of visiting milongas, not all of them, but more or less, one or two of each type (salon, open air, social club, young people, etc..), I can say there are some codes, that depend on the place. This codes are not universal, in one place there is done something, in another place the opposite.

1) the host of the milonga do not dance with the dancers that come to dance to the milonga. Maybe he/she, will dance at the end of the night, with his co host, or the elder dancer still on the place. The different arguments I received from hosts, is that they have to take care of the people, places, waiters, music, wardrobe, artists, live music, etc. etc.. so they simply could not put their mind into dancing. They prefer to go to other milonga to dance, in a day where their milonga is not open. However last saturday at viejo correo, the host, danced with an old milonguero. It was a quiet night, not too many couples dancing, and it was early, so the night do not have more major changes, I suppose.

2) tandas have to be tango, milonga and valsecito, only. This is something that I heard from organizers that do this , they say "we respect the codes, no other music here, if you want latin or salsa, go to a disco" . However some milongas, include a tanda of cumbia, a tanda of swing/jazz, and a tanda of chacarera, like Club El Fulgor in Villa Crespo. This code is... to be bend but not to be broken it seems...

3) milonga starts when a couple of dancers, usually the elder ones, or the most respected, enter to the dance floor. The other couples wait for this couple to open the night. Sometimes there are nods between the elders, to see who will be the first to go, it depends on the music the DJ plays, some elders like to dance D Arienzo to start (La Baldosa organizer Susana at El Pial, like to play D Arienzo as opener). Other milongas just play at random, until, maybe, a tanda of valsecitos trigger the audience into the dancing floor (like Salon Canning on a friday night)

4) If the milonga sort the dancers in areas of couples, and alones, it is not a good manner to ask a woman in a table with a man, to dance, unless they are common friends. Sometimes couples (married couples I mean), show their intention to dance with other people, by sitting in different tables.

5) taxi dancers are to be ignored. This is a relative new code. The local tango community do not like taxi dancers activity. It is known when a taxi dancer comes, since it stays with the same woman all the night, and is clear they are not a married couple. Also their faces at the table, are faces of partners in a business agreement, not a couple looking the dance and commenting or sharing experiences. More or less like a horse/mare rent for a ride in horseback.

6) in old times, there was a man that made a control of the dancers, if someone makes a figure that was not estrictly social dancing (boleos or colgadas), it came from behind, tap the shoulder of the person and said "mister, here we dance to the floor, do not do that again". If the person makes the non authorized step again, he was taken away from the place.

7) if a man takes a woman to dance, it is not polite to dance only one tango of the tanda, the tanda has to be danced complete, and then escort the lady back to her table. Although this code of complete tanda, is respected, the other code, to escort the lady back to her table, is not fulfilled thoroughly.

Unfortunately, there is not a syllabus of tango codes, it would be something very useful. There are opinions and comments, that are individual, I try to summarize what I have seen, there has to be a lot more of tango codes, and each milonga place, has their habits.

I would like to say that the direction of dance (counterclockwise) is a tango code respected, but... it is not respected anymore, maybe in two or three places like El beso, Sunderland. Sin rumbo ....

mié, octubre 21, 2009 9:35:45 PM”

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