I recently had my very first Tango experience!!
The young dark-haired woman glides gracefully across the dance floor in a dazzling open-backed red dress and red high heels with slender straps. Her dashing husband struts into the ballroom wearing jacket and tie. They are Tango champions from Argentina. I am in the audience.
They introduce us to the orginal Tango of their country by saying that this is a naughty dance often done in brothels. (!) The woman's arm position is low and straight down by her side, next to the gentleman's pocket, for easy access to possible cash. (!) They dance together in an intimate embrace and dominate the dance floor with flourishes and intricate twirls.
They also demonstrate more modern tangos and show us how a man asks a woman to dance in Argentina. From across the floor, the man merely nods slightly to the woman, and if she accepts, she rises from her chair and walks toward him until they meet. If she refuses, she remains seated and looks away. This spares him the embarrassment of obvious rejection. He has not walked across an entire room. He has merely nodded.
The dancers decide to ask for volunteers to come up and learn a basic step. I am urged by a woman next to me to be part of a line of nervous novices. We watch and try to follow the instructions...step right, back, right, left, together...without bumping into each other and stumbling. Suddenly, my Tango teacher sashayed across the room and stopped directly in front of me!
He speaks, "Do not look down. Look into my eyes." I look into his (very nice) dark brown eyes. He continues. "put your hand on my shoulder." I do.
"Now put your other hand on my other shoulder."
We stand tall with perfect posture and look into each others' eyes until he steps securely into the rhythm of the music and somehow, I find myself dancing smoothly across the polished floor with a handsome Tango Champion from Argentina!!! Ole!
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