Choose Between Two Options
- C$25 for four weeks of beginner Argentine tango classes for one (C$65 value)
- C$47 for four weeks of beginner Argentine tango classes for two (C$130 value)
- See the schedule.
The Tango: Improvising Romance
The tango begins with an embrace, and the more natural and full of affection, the more successful the dance will likely be. The leader’s left hand holds the follower’s right and his right arm encircles the follower’s back securely, but not forcefully, in tune but ready to improvise. Music strikes up. The dancers follow the rhythm or melody, reacting to what they feel together. With the spine straight, chest lifted, and head level, the leader starts to walk, briskly or slowly, building the foundation of the dance with sweeping or staccato footwork punctuated by pauses that add sensual feeling to the dance and allow the follower to be an equal and active participant. From here, innumerable variations unfold in a cascade of short sequences that the leader mixes and matches to convey whatever message is desired and to help navigate a crowded floor.
In the late 1800s, the Rio de la Plata basin on the border of Argentina and Uruguay became a melting pot of immigrants from across the world. European imperialists brought in slaves, who carried along their traditional music. This mixed together with the music of the native peoples in milongas—dance houses where the poorer populations gathered and were free to embrace. At this time, touching while dancing was still considered scandalous and immoral by the upper class, who danced apart, occasionally not even facing each other. This kept the tango from catching fire throughout South America for many decades, but Europeans traveling to Argentina brought the dance back to France around 1910, where it soon swept the nation and then farther. Today, the tango is beloved worldwide, and was even given cultural-treasure status by UNESCO in 2009.