12 January 2009

A litany of tango epiphanies

Epiphany iˈpifənē
• a moment of sudden revelation or insight


Being a lead in Tango is extremely difficult. You have to navigate, interpret the music, lead the movements, dance in tune with the music, know what your partner is doing, know what foot she's on, keep your balance, don't knock her off her axis, plan your timing, maintain your posture, make sure your embrace is just right, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera... ALL AT ONCE!

I like to think that I'm an OK lead who can hold my own on a milonga floor. How I got to my current level of dancing tango was not easy. My development was not linear nor steady. It wasn't like my ballroom dancing where you go through a regimented and measured program where one goes form Bronze 1, Bronze 2, Silver 1, Silver 2, and Gold levels.

My Tango path has been, and still is difficult. The very nature of Argentine Tango being driven by improvisation and musicality, while operating under strict conduct and parameters, stifles the linear learning method. It advocates a different approach to adult learning. The advantage of the tango paradigm is that the simplest of walks can be transformed into a beautiful art form filled with passion and meaning. If, done with the right intent, commitment, and execution.

My Tango development trend is a series of peaks and valleys. Long stretches of time that could be described as, "Great! This is good... What next?" Then, interspersed with sporadic events of angelic "AHA!" moments—Epiphanies!

When these epiphanies occur, they cause strides in my tango evolutionary development. Some came from trial and error, some I had to work at, some from semi-traumatic Tango experiences, some happened on their own, some I learned from watching, and a myriad of other odd circumstances.

A few of the articles I've written illustrate the epiphanies that I found were so poignant (to me) that I still remember, and can write about. I'm positive that as I move forward, I will have more and my litany of epiphanies will grow.

Litany of Tango Epiphanies:

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