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About Argentine Tango


 

General

Argentine Tango consists of a variety of styles that developed in different regions and eras, and in response to the crowding of the venue and even the fashions in clothing. Even though they all developed in Argentina and Uruguay, they were also exposed to influences reimported from Europe and North America. Consequently there is a good deal of confusion and overlap between the styles as they are now danced - and fusions continue to evolve.

Most of the Argentine Tango styles are danced in both open embrace, where leader and follower connect at arms length, and close embrace, where the man and woman connect chest-to-chest. Close embrace is often associated with the more traditional styles, while open embrace leaves room for many of the embellishments and figures that are associated with Tango Nuevo.

Tango is essentially walking with a partner and the music. Musicality (i.e. dancing appropriately to the emotion and speed of a tango) is an extremely important element of tangoing. A good dancer is one who makes you see the music. Also, dancers generally keep their feet close to the floor as they walk, the ankles and knees brushing as one leg passes the other.

Argentine Tango relies heavily on improvisation; although certain patterns of movement have been codified by instructors over the years as a device to instruct dancers, there is no "basic step." One of the only constants across all Argentine Tango styles, is that the follower will usually be led to alternate feet. Another is that the follower rarely has her weight on both feet at the same time. Argentine tango is a new orientation of couple dancing. As most dances have a rational-pattern which can be predicted by the follower, the ballast of previous perceptions about strict rules has to be thrown overboard and replaced by a real communication contact, creating a direct non-verbal dialogue. A tango is a living act in the moment as it happens.

Argentine Tango is danced counterclockwise around the outside of the dance floor (the "line of dance") and dance "traffic" often segregates into a number of "lanes"; cutting across the middle of the floor is frowned upon. In general, the middle of the floor is where you find either beginners who lack floor navigation skills or people who are performing "showy" figures or patterns that take up more dance floor space. It is acceptable to stop briefly in the line of dance to perform stationary figures, as long as the other dancers are not unduly impeded. The school of thought about this is, if there is open space in front of you, there are likely people waiting behind you. Dancers are expected to respect the other couples on the floor; colliding or even crowding another couple, or stepping on others' feet is to be avoided strenuously. It is considered rude; in addition to possible physical harm rendered, it can be disruptive to a couple's musicality.

 

The Dance

Argentine Tango is recognised as one of the most sophisticated, sensual and passionate dance.

It is a dance form very different from the international ballroom tango in which the couples dance with a rose in the mouth, and swinging their heads from time to time ... Argentine tango is danced with emphasis on the lower body movement, the 'Ganchos', 'Voleos' are all done with the intricate movement of legs with the upper body in close embrace. Moreover, the essence of argentine tango comes with improvisation. The men lead and women follow. Women will never know what's the next step in argentine tango, so there will not be any problem even you dance with a stranger. That is why in a milonga, there's a custom to change partner every 4 songs.  If you lead and follow in a correct way, you can always enjoy the dance and the music as romantic as you dance with your lover. That's why, the dance is always called "a-three-minute-love-affair."  

探戈舞蹈

「誘惑的腳影,性感的舞姿」往往是一般人對阿根廷探戈的印象,然而這只是探戈的側影。

舞蹈形式上,阿根廷探戈有別於國際標準舞探戈那種挺腰甩頭,咬著玫瑰花的形態。阿根廷探戈著重下身的動作,雙腿或朐或纏,上身都是緊貼著對方。而最大的不同之處,是阿根廷探戈的舞步都是由男方引領,女士追隨的,是完全隨心隨意,完全即興的一種舞蹈。所以在阿根廷探戈的舞會中,男女一般都不會只與特定舞伴跳舞,因為只要帶領與跟隨正確,即使是兩個陌生人,也可以在動人的探戈樂曲中,共同舞出阿根廷探戈的優美與浪漫,這也是阿根廷探戈最醉人之處。

阿根廷探戈的舞蹈風格主要分為 show tango 以及 salon tango。在劇院看到的表演多半為 show tango,裡面納入一些難度較高的動作 ,舞蹈也往往是事先編排好的。Salon tango 為社交性質的探戈, 著重在即興以及男女之間共舞的感覺。

The Music

Music is the soul of argentine tango. Tango music is probably most distinguished from other types of music by two things: the bandoneon and the lack of drums. The music of tango is always with a melancholic emotion.  The classic tango orchestra is made up of bandoneons, violins, piano, and cello.

探戈音樂

探戈歌曲是阿根廷的靈魂。探戈的音樂瀰漫著一抹「憂郁」的情感。歌詞大致描述愛情、生活經歷等。不同的探戈節奏形成三種不同韻味的舞蹈形式。以傳統阿根廷手風琴,配合鋼琴、小提琴、低音大提琴彈奏,時而淒美感性;時而輕鬆欣喜;時而高貴優雅;不同的性格,有不同的魅力。現代探戈舞者為發揮探戈即興的精神,除在舞步上敢於創新外,更嘗試以其他能配合探戈的音樂自由舞動,跳出另一種神韻。

The Cultural Background

Although it has come to epitomize the glamour and elegance of high society, with women in sleek glittering evening gowns and men in tuxedos, the Argentine Tango was originated in a society's underbelly, the brothels of Buenos Aires, as an "acting out" of the relationship between the prostitute and the immigrants. However, after tango was performance at a fashionable salon is Paris, it gain tremendous popularity in Europe, and Argentine high society took a new look at the dance. Moreover, thanks to the Hollywood effect, a number of movies like "the Scent of Women", "Tango" and "Tango Lesson" etc, make Argentine tango known to all continents of the world. 

Today, young people in Argentina and many big cites all over the world started to realize the tango in their own ways, with their own unique character, deconstructing and reconstructuring it. Maybe that is why tango is now again a phenomenon, and this resurrection of tango may make the artform more powerfull than ever.

探戈文化

探戈起源於阿根廷首都布宜諾艾利斯Buenos Aires。是當時洲的移民在妓院尋求慰藉排解鄉愁而演變出來的舞姿,這種舞蹈傳入歐洲後不久亦廣被歐洲的上流社會接受,為探戈增添了一份高貴優雅的風格,但亦將部份元素改變,演變成歐洲的標準舞探戈,傳統的阿根廷探戈則一直在阿根廷當地流傳發展,至近年蓬勃復興,電影《女人香》、《探戈狂戀》、《Tango Lesson》等,更將這種舞蹈向世界展示,現時阿根廷探戈的足跡已遍佈歐美、中國、日本、韓國、新加坡、印度、澳洲 ……目前正在全世界各大城市吹起一股不可抵擋的風潮。

 Milonga / Practica

Milonga is a dance party. It can be held casually in a bar, or formally in a decent restaurant or hotel, or even just out in a outdoor plaza or riverside. In a milonga, men invite women to dance by their eyes, sometimes with a noding head.  As people can dance argentine tango with any strangers, milonga becomes a very good means of cultural exchange. What can be better than making friends with tango all over the world?

Practica is an informal practice event usually held regularly in dance studios for practicing the technical movements of the dance. 

探戈舞會 (Milonga/Practica)

Milonga 是阿根廷探戈的舞會。它可以是酒館餐廳,也可以是河濱公園或露天廣場。舞會中男女以眼神交換邀舞,不須言語。舞會的慣例每四首曲就換一次舞伴,也令探戈成為一種社交文化活動。目前全球各大城市裏,每個夜晚都能找到探戈舞會的蹤影。所以阿根廷探戈的舞者,去到世界各地也可以以舞會友。

Practica 是阿根廷探戈的練習舞聚。大多數租用一些dance studio 作練習場地,舞者利用這些場合互相砌磋舞技。

 

 

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