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The levels in the dance. (Tango)

How many times have we heard "I'm intermediate", "I'm advanced", "I'm a beginner"?

How complicated it is to define the level of dance, because not even by saying the years of dancing we could be defining the level. It is not mechanical, in tango there are no exams to pass...the only thing we could use as a guide is to observe and see how your dance flows in the milonga. This would be the technical aspect of the dance level.

On the other hand, the truth is that it matters little to define and place yourself in a level because the most important thing is to know that we will always continue to progress in our dance to be able to understand it from all possible angles, not only in its "dance" aspect but also in its social, cultural, musical...and perhaps the most important: in the spiritual growth.

In its technical aspect we know that to be able to dance comfortably in a milonga it is necessary to have all the tools to flow correctly in this space, to know how to walk, to know the codes of the milonga, to have understood basic techniques and musicality even if it is simply recognizing the pulse. Last but not least is to be already familiar with the embrace.

Let's say that all this is an "initial" level. If your object is to go dancing at a milonga, and enjoy sharing the dance with other people, then all these points should be in your body memory.

Clearly this first initial level is very relative since we can compare it to the whole elementary school...how many years is it? 5-6...? How long did it take you to learn to read and write? Everyone has their own time but it also depends on the technique used by each teacher to teach and in turn on your application to learning. How much time do you dedicate to your learning? How much time do you invest in practicing what you learn?

If we continue in the evolution of learning we find that after elementary school follows secondary school...and this would be an intermediate level. How long does it take? 6-7 years? At this point in our learning, and note the parallelism with tango, it is no longer about learning to read and write, but we elaborate, we create, we understand what is between the lines, we explore, we relate in a different way?

Then follows the university and here we are already at an advanced level. In Tango we already explore subtleties of movement, musicality, the level of body sensitivity that allows us to guide or follow is much higher and has grown enormously and consequently also its adaptability, fundamental capacity to be able to relate and communicate with different dancers.

At this point we discover a world where everything and everyone teaches us something...it is a constant learning process. Our eyes can better observe subtleties that were not possible to see before, our body has an intuitive understanding and movement and even the most simple but musically rich becomes rewarding.

This is an advanced level.

How many years have passed since we started and dedicated many hours per week?

Today in a dance class all levels are mixed, and sometimes there are advanced in a beginners class and there are beginners in an advanced class...do you understand?

Is it a problem? Depends....for the one who knows how to learn it is not. Sometimes helping others or learning to be patient is a learning for oneself, sometimes seeing that I don't understand anything is also an important learning that makes us go back to fundamental things to be able to move forward.

The important thing is:

  • always have the desire to learn

  • to have patience with oneself and with others

  • know that learning to dance is a process that lasts as long as you want, enjoy the journey.

And it is here when we understand that tango is also a very enriching process of spiritual growth in our life. At the beginning I said that the level of dance is seen by how we know how to flow with our dance in the milonga (understood as the dance space)...so making a parallelism we can also say that our spiritual growth is seen by how we flow in our life.

As it says a beautiful milonga written by Fernando Montoni and Rodolfo Sciammarella:

Life is a milonga and you have to know how to dance it.

Have a good trip... and good TANGO!



Listen to this milonga by the Orquesta of Pedro Laurenz:

Version Ensamble Hyperion (orquesta contemporanea)

Version del Sexteto Cristal (orquesta contemporanea)


Here the complete lyrics of this milonga.


LIFE IS A MILONGA


Everyone is waiting to improve their situation

Everyone lives sighing Rightly or wrongly.


Everybody's lamenting 

If they're no longer in the good one, 

Nobody can stand the storm 

If the counter is given to them.


Life is a milonga 

And you have to know how to dance it, 

He who loses his compass is left over on the dance floor.


Life is a milonga 

And you have to know how to dance it, 

Because it's sad to be seated 

While others dance


And if you feel like dancing a milonga, here is a link to some of our classes on youtube so you can start practicing:



There are many videos of us dancing milongas on youtube but here is one we've choose for you:


Here is a link a our full instructional video to learn milonga:


We invite you to share your experience in Tango if you'd like to do so.

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