One of the most requested types of dance classes in Toronto, the tango is a sensual ballroom dance that is passionate but exacting, difficult but seamless, and popular but accessible. Originating in Buenos Aires, Argentina in the twentieth century, it quickly became one of the most popular types of dances.
The tango is typically performed by a pair of dancers conveying a story of passion, romance, and a tinge of anger in their movements. Interestingly enough, while the tango is typically performed by a man and a woman today, it was originally performed only by women.
The History Of The Tango
While early tango and the tango that we dance today look somewhat different, they are similar in some of the most important ways. Spanish settlers brought the tango into different cultures. While it actually started as a working-class dance, it quickly became popular among all classes in Europe and the United States. During the early 1900s, it became very popular at underground clubs in New York City.
In recent years, tango has had a bit of a resurgence thanks to movies, Broadway shows, music videos, and of course Dancing With The Stars and So You Think You Can Dance? showcasing fantastic tango dances.
As such, the tango is becoming a popular dance to learn in dance classes, use as first dances, and even watch repeatedly. Some YouTube videos have millions of views!
The Music Used For Tango
Traditional Argentine tango has a unique type of jazz sound, which is why it was able to spread throughout the United States so quickly. Many classical and folk singers, composers, and dancers found these styles to be extremely accessible. Many of the examples within the United States throughout the Great Depression show a struggle between that traditional style and the music genres
Today, much of the music used outside of Argentina still doesn’t have the same elements as it does within Argentina. However, the music is generally accepted as the music used for these types of dances. Many of the most popular options weren’t written and created in Argentina, but rather in the southern portion of the United States, in London, and other big cities.
Types of Tango
Tango is typically danced to a style of music that has repetition and a count of either 16 or 32 beats. The traditional hold has the woman in the crook of the man’s arm, with her head held back. She will then rest her right hand on his hip. This allows the woman to have stability while she is being led around the floor.
The dance works in a curving pattern. The two dancers much work together to have a strong connection and reflect the passion of the dance. Without a connection and that passion, even the most skilled dancers will fall flat. Of course, this is within the Argentine Tango.
The modern tango is a bit less intimate. There are a few different styles of tango here, each one just a bit different. Depending on the style, the couples may have distance between their bodies or they may have no distance at all.
The “ballroom tango” which is what has been popularized by the media in the last few years is also characterized by dramatic head movements.
Taking A Class To Learn The Tango
The best way to learn the tango is to take a dance class in Toronto. Tango classes are some of the most popular for dancers of all levels and it is easy to pick the style up fairly quickly. It is even a great workout for those looking to double dip with learning a new skill.
Know that to be very good at the tango, no matter the style, it will take some time to learn all of the terms and movements that make it so famous.