Watching your favorite tango couple performing and you’re asking yourself, oh gosh, I wish I could dance like her. Due to the fact that she has a professional education in dance as a base, plus a profound carrier as a tango dancer, you realize only a small chance that this dream becomes true. 10 beneficial hints for success and you will know how to dance like a dancing queen.
10 hints and your dream becomes true.
With some basic understandings and regular training, you will screw up your tango and dance like your favorite dancing queen.
1. Get invited with style and etiquette.
Tango is a relict of former times where etiquette expects a certain code where men are gentlemen who invite and Ladies accepts, this is just a formal routine (please read more details about the cabeceo in my article the art of inviting. )
As a follower acting according to this etiquette, you easily can choose, who to dance with. You can reject an invitation without being rude or find yourself in an uncomfortable situation.
Practicing the cabeceo is one step forward to an elegant and sophisticated appearance in a milonga.
Yes, a lady as well may invite.
Against the common understanding, also a lady has the opportunity to choose a partner. And she will do this with a gaze.
A lady can try her luck by searching for eye contact with a man she would like to dance with and wait if he reacts with a cabeceo.
Shall he not respond to her gaze with a cabeceo, he does not want to dance. Simple as this.
In the same way, men have to respect the ladies “answer” she will have to respect “ his answer. Same chances on both sides and the whole act is not visible by anybody else except the 2 persons involved, everything happens discretely.
Avoid verbal invitation.
To show respect, a female dancer will not approach a man and ask him for a dance.
Verbal invitations are no goes for lead and follow.
Quite common in some Milongas in western countries, still, verbal invitations are not desirable because of the earlier mentioned reasons, except in a small community where dancers know each other very well.
2. Impress on first sight.
start with these simple hints for success is your appearance.
- Freshly showered and elegant clothing is a must. A good perfume will make you even more attractive as a dancer. But the non plus ultra is your smile. A friendly and warm expression is a free entrance to any tanda. Men are most impressed by friendliness.
- A real experienced follower shows friendliness and patience. Patience is the other important attribute an advanced follower consists off. Never let a bad mood get into your face, best, it shall not even enter your mind.
- Changing shoes in the bathroom is a much better choice, than under the table in the Milonga.
3. Select your partner wisely.
- You do not have to dance with everyone, please select your partner wisely, without being picky. More details in:how to improve in tango
Try not to rush desperately taking all possibilities to get on the dance floor. Quality counts, not quantity. With the quality we include as a well nice and friendly beginner, who need some experiences with an advanced follower. We do not forget that we have been a beginner ourselves and know how hard it can be in a milonga. Tango is a social dance and we are not there just to satisfy our ego.
Even elderly people, who are not that fit anymore, maybe have some physical problems, also want to dance safely in a nice embrace from time to time. Those people deserve your attention.
- When you had a very good tanda give yourself a break that you still can enjoy the positive vibrations.
- Be aware that every dancer brings new vibrations to you, therefore select carefully.
4. Convince with your embrace.
The embrace is the most important element in tango.
Take some private lessons just to learn close and open embrace dancing and you will easily adapt to any men’s favorite style.
In workshop and group classes you won’t have the detailed attention to this subject. The embrace needs really hands-on in detail by a good teacher.
It is advisable to consult different teachers referring this topic, to get a wider spectrum of inputs to understand the matter from various angles.
Part of the communication in the couple is to decide on the style, which is mostly introduced by the leader and the follower adjust accordingly.
With more experience, she can smoothly adapt to his hold. For more details kindly read my article on this topic. secrets of the embrace.
Once you are able to maintain balance and fluent movements without affecting the frame, you will have that special edge.
5. Keep it simple.
What impresses you about your favorite dancing queen, when she dances socially? Is it a warm connection to her partner, which touches your heart? Is it her embrace, her fancy footwork, or her super accurate giros and poses?
- At first, keep everything quite simple. Find the right connection, with your partner and the music. Breathe evenly and indulge yourself with serenity.
- During the walk, respond with long strokes without losing connection. Follow evenly and enjoy simplicity. Learn to walk correctly in the music. This is an important fact not only for leaders.
- Place an ornament here and there, always in the music and only if you can do them beautifully. Regular visits of ladies technique classes will do wonder. It is easier to wait until he gives you the time than to force one embellishment after the other. Less is more.
- Ladies role is in the first place to be a good follower with strong musicality, everything else is additional.
6. Work out your body are the most efficient hints for success.
- Do some homework to improve your body.
Practice every morning and every evening under the shower, stand with your back to the wall, turn upper body 10 x left and right touch the wall with both hands while your hips keep facing to the front. The warm water supports muscle relaxation.
Make use of counter body movement, you will sense the necessarily naturally in the close embrace. It will help to keep in perfect contact in the close embrace. Active torso commitment.
- To dance like a professional, practice Pilates or Yoga, 2 x a week as general conditioning for relaxed and defined dancing.
- regular feet yoga. follow my video
- Take regular ladies technique classes. This is the only way you will adapt correct basic techniques, embellishments, and musicality. For correct movements as a follower, it is advisable to take privates or ladies technique classes.
7. Focus on a clean tango walk.
More important than any figure or dramatic pose is the walk. It is the most important part during the dance. Put importance in a clean Zero position and even long strokes.
The toes keeping always contact with the floor. Check for details under Ladies techniques 1-8.
8. Conversation on the dance floor?
In tango, we do not talk during the dance. We need all our senses to listen to the music and to feel the movements of our partner.
In the beginning or during 2 themes there is time enough to chat.
Even you do not start exactly on the music, that is fine, take your time and finish your talk in a relaxed way.
Once you have started with the dance all talking should have finished though.
9. Listen to Tango music.
The follower shall be very confident with the beat. If he is a poor dancer he will probably lead you out of beat. With your knowledge of musicality and self-esteem, you may even help a weak leader to find back into the flow.
To become more familiar with tango music make a little research about at least 4- 5 main orchestras. Canaro, D’Arienzo, Di Sarli, Troilo, Pugliese.
Find 4 music pieces which you like of each orchestra and put them together in a playlist, sorted according to the orchestra.
Listen to this playlist at home or in the car to get familiar with the different characteristics of each orchestra. If you like even learn to know the titles and the singer.
Once you are familiar with these orchestras and themes, keep on going with more playlists with other orchestras.
10. Soft release from the embrace and the tanda.
When the music finishes, and you shall have enjoyed the dance, hold the embrace for 3 seconds longer, then softly release the embrace. This enhances the connection and shoes him that you enjoyed the dance without putting this into words.
Flirting on the dance floor is part of the whole idea of tango that dancers flirt with each other in a polite and sophisticated way.
In western countries, it is sometimes seen that couples are kissing and exposing themselves to the public in a very intimate way.
This is not an elegant behavior in public.
Everything more than sympathy and flirting does not belong on the dance floor.
The dance has been just so-so, you may just smile and say thank you to your partner.
According to his manners, he will escort you to your seat or at least outside the dance floor.
Follow these 10 hints for success and with the time you will become more creative in your dance. As a happy milongera you will develop your interpretation of the music. Beware of overdoing it, as we are not on stage in social dancing.