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Beware the tango addiction!

23rd February 2012 Print

You might have a friend who recently started Argentine tango. At first, you thought the same would happen than when she picked up table tennis, bikram yoga, diving, quit after a few months.

To your surprise, she didn’t… Instead, she quickly moved from a regime of one group class a week to two group classes, she then decided to add to this a private tango lesson once every couple of weeks, and she finally started to join ‘milongas’. And now you have to suffer this insupportable stream of Spanish words which punctuates everything she says. Milongas, she told you, are night clubs playing tango all night. Gancho – these hook-like steps where one partner wraps one leg around the other’s. And many more which you still need to decipher – boleo, giro salidas, adornos… Sometimes you even think she’s only making up all these words to wind you up!

So what happened and made her so addicted to tango?

How elegant and beautiful tango looks, might be what got her hooked first. Watching how two people can become so united that they look like one entity is truly mesmerising. As she watched other couples dance, she might have started to think: ‘I want to dance like this too.’

Then, as she progressed in her tuition, the challenge of learning tango might have appealed to both her left and right brain - the challenge of figuring out how to work with someone else, using only one’s body, to create a beautiful sequence of steps. She became determined to improve her tango technique, posture and balance.

Of course, she also enjoyed being able to express herself and show her emotions with her body. It was scary at first, but then she got to love the exhilarating feeling of being complete, of using mind and body.

As she became a regular to Argentine tango classes in London, she met friends she’s now got a great passion to share with. They meet at classes, workshops, go to tango weekends throughout Europe together and are talking about the next big thing: their first trip to the birthplace of tango; Buenos Aires.

They also go to tango night clubs every Friday or Saturday. It’s now only once a week, but you know deep down that she might start going Friday and Saturday.