Sunday, April 8, 2018

Did you know that dancing with the Milongueros is like Heaven?

I know that some red hot* Toronto tango newbie girls recently went down to Buenos Aires.

* Red hot = young, skinny, pretty, popular and wearing something tight and/or revealing.  As opposed to old and/or fat and/or ugly and sitting on the side all night and never asked to dance.  No, I'm not jealous but just stating the sad realistic facts.

I hope that when they were there, they didn't just dance with flingers.  They go to flinger classes here and dance almost exclusively with other young Toronto flingers and boy do they worship and gush over them.  They think the youthful flinger lads are the best thing since sliced bread.  A million gazillion Facebook likes!

I look at the said flinger lads flinging and 1) hope they don't fling into me and 2) roll my eyes and want to barf at the red hot newbie adoration they are getting.  Are you all mad?

Unfortunately, I really do think they went down to Buenos Aires and just went to flinger classes and flinger milongas and just danced with other young gleeful flinging people. The girls think flinging is the real authentic Tango and anything else is just bizarre.

They do not know that dancing with the Milongueros is like Heaven.  They mistakenly believe that the near-death experience of being flung in Tango at high speed is like Heaven.  As one tanguera has described to me quite aptly, "When he flung me and I clung on for dear life, my life flashed before my eyes!"

It is so sad that in a space of a few years, Tango newbies can't access how milonguero tango feels like even if they want to.  Most of the old milongueros have passed on.  People who have learned to dance with the milongueros or who have danced with the milongueros and who can transmit that wonderful tango feeling are few and far between (probably quit tango after being flung into).  Everyone is flocking either to the competition tango or the flinger tango bandwagons.

I've danced with the Milongueros, girls, and flinger Tango pales in comparison.

With the Milongueros you feel and hear the music.

With the flingers, they aren't listening.  They just want to fling and they are thinking of the next flingy step they can throw at you.

With the Milongueros, you are dancing with gentlemen.  They will protect the women they dance with and respect the people around them.

With the flingers, you are dancing with jerks and they don't care who they hit with a careless fling because they are so busy flinging.

With the Milongueros, you feel their warm, steady and confident embrace.

With the flingers - well, they've flung you out in a wide orbit and you are gripping on with your fingernails or else you are going to be flung to Mars.

It's too late now, but next trip, I hope that instead of doing the Flingtastic Tango Tour, they will go and take lessons with the few milongueros and milongueras who are left.  There are a few still teaching.  Like Myriam Pincen and Blas Catrenau.  Absolutely a match made in Tango Heaven for sure.

They recently performed at Salon Canning.  I hope you enjoy this video of their performance!


The Outpost said...

:) And nice video!

Negracha is or was til recently a longstanding tango club mostly for younger people in the centre of London. I've danced in more place in London than most Londoners I've met, including, over the years, several times in Negracha. I have found it to be the epitome really of what a lot of dancing in London is like, in style and attitude. I was there most recently the last time I danced properly - meaning much - in the UK in November. I went to a lovely milonga, Pasional, in Cambridge on the Saturday night but decided, for the Friday night to go to London; first to Carablanca a traditional milonga (by London standards). When that finished around midnight I went on to Negracha which is nearby. You describe it exactly! The leggy, smoothed, silked, flingmingo girls, unknowingly, willingly abused. I never go to this sort of milonga so it was bizarre to see these fixed, obsessed and yet vacant eyes, as though drugged. The girls drugged on the guys and perhaps the dance, or perhaps drugged on the need to be chosen by the right guy and the guys drugged - though somewhat more alert - by the girls.

Even stranger, there was a well dressed couple, much older than the mostly twenty-somethings present. He wore a suit. They danced nicely, quietly, musically, together to the deafening music and nothing like everything going on around them. It was rather surreal. They looked slightly familiar and I realised later when I understood that the man was blind that I had in fact met them very briefly a few years before in a much more traditional milonga in the country. They were sitting far away from everyone else, at their own table. They sat there all night, dancing together occasionally. I was mystified. Shortly before I left I went to say how much I had enjoyed watching them dance and, puzzled, slightly embarrassed but curious, to ask, if they didn't mind, since they were so different in manner and dance well, why were they there? Their response floored me. "It's our local", the lady said. "We've been coming here for years."

Irene and Man Yung said...

Dear Felicity,

LMAO!!!! Flingmingos!!!!

That is so hilariously descriptive :-)

And I agree that there is a lot of "unknowingness" going on. Not their fault really - no one to set the example and no example to dance with to show that there is something else more to tango than fling-a-ling-ling.

Wonderful and sad anecdote about the local couple. Sigh :-(

Hope there are still lots of traditional tango refuges left in the U.K.

Thank you for your comment, have a lovely Sunday!

Irene and Man Yung

The Outpost said...

Dear Irene and Man Yung,

A flingmingo is actually also a thing! I surreptiously, guiltily binned a very grubby one I kept tripping over last week. Rather aptly, it's a fake pink flamingo (rubber) you pull over your index finger and catapult across the room, usually aiming to hit people.

The local couple weren't sad though, that was the strangest thing. They seemed (to me) perfectly out of place and yet perfectly happy.

Good traditional milongas in the UK. Hmmm. There's Tango West in Bristol. I had a nice time at their tea dance when I was last there, but I haven't been for several years. Pasional in Cambridge I have really enjoyed and danced all evening last time I was there, like in the good old days. That's about it really. It's that magic combination that seems to be so hard to find: great music/sound, nice hosts, a good floor, pleasant venue. And then there's the social side and dancing! :) I'd love to hear any recommendations from any UK readers. I've also enjoyed this occasional salon in the Netherlands.

But for good dancing, (to generalise) I like experienced, older Spanish men. This group, depending where you find them, I have found is most musical, least forceful and most understanding about what dancers like me like :)

But, I don't dance in encuentros and I hear things are different there.

jessiechung said...

Dear Irene and Man Yung,

Great article and fabulous descriptive and so entertaining. I laughed so hard that I cried.

Thank you.


Irene and Man Yung said...

Dear Jessie,

It's great to hear from you! Thanks for your comment, hope you have beautiful tangos over the weekend :-)

Irene and Man Yung

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