On Friday the 23rd March 2018, we held our first X-Tango Alternative Milonga at our regular venue in Sevenoaks. This venture into the world of tango freestyle evenings - milongas - was something new for us and we had no idea how it would be received. How many people like dancing tango to modern or nuevo music? Would anyone come to a tango event run by an organisation with such a non-tango name as "Jivebeat"? Would anyone else like the music I play? But we have been promising ourselves that we would try something like this ever since we introduced tango to Jivebeat classes back in the summer of 2017, so it was about time we got on and did it.
We need not have worried. We had slightly over 40 people that turned up, and it was great to see that people had travelled from all over Kent and Sussex to come and dance with us. You can have a look at some of the photos we took during the evening at the link below...
We started the evening with a short warm-up routine and a "get you started" class for anyone new to tango. Then at around 8.45pm we dimmed the lights, turned up the music, and for the rest of the evening it was down to me as DJ to keep you all entertained. Obviously I'm not going to say anything about how good the music was as reviewing my own DJ set would be weird 😉, but everyone - including me - seemed to be enjoying themselves, so I'll count that as a win!
We'd also like to give a big thank you to Libusha of Libertas Atelier for bringing all her wonderful tango and dance fashion creations along. If you didn't get a chance to look at them properly at the venue then why not go and have a browse around her online collection. Click the link below to view her store on Etsy...
Our next X-Tango event at Sevenoaks will be on Friday the 27th April 2018, starting at 8pm as before. The warm-up class will be a little shorter next time, so the dance floor will be yours from around 8.30pm.
See you there!
It has been a long while coming, but we have finally announced our first X-Tango Alternative Milonga, and it's going to be on the 23rd March 2018 in Sevenoaks, in place of our usual weekly class. But what do we mean by X-Tango? What is the difference between that and regular Argentine Tango? And why are we calling the milonga alternative?
The Argentine Tango we dance and teach at Jivebeat is the same Argentine Tango that you will find anywhere else. Yes, if you come to our class you may find that we put the emphasis in different places to where you might expect, and just like everyone else who teaches tango we have developed our own teaching style. But the dance itself is the same dance you will learn in Buenos Aires, Brighton, Bromley, or Bangalore, no matter how traditional or nuevo (modern) your class might be.
The way we teach and promote tango is definitely more 'nuevo' than traditional, and this is reflected in the music we use in our classes. There is a strong tradition in tango that you should primarily dance it to music especially written for that purpose, and preferably music written and released in the Golden Age (from around 1935-1952) by a very select group of orchestras. There is nothing wrong with this at all, and it creates an atmosphere that is highly evocative of the traditional tango clubs that formed in that time. But we believe tango is a dance that also deserves to be enjoyed and experienced with as wide a range of music as possible, so the music we play at our classes and our events leans in a rather different direction.
We play blues, jazz, popular, electronica, metal, and no doubt many other genres too... if the track works for tango then we play it. In fact about the only style we rarely play is traditional tango music from Argentina. This musical mixture means that we sometimes see people dancing other styles at the same time as most people are dancing tango, as some tracks are suitable for more than one flavour of dance. LeRoc, ballroom, traditional jive... we have seen them all in the same room as people dancing tango. And that's more than fine by us!
So welcome to our first X-Tango Alternative Milonga. We could have called it a Neotango or Nuevo Tango event, but as the jury is still out on whether they are general terms or are used to refer to something specific in tango history, we thought we would come up with something a bit different. We tried a few names, and 'X-Tango' seemed the most popular. So it stuck.
If you like tango and want to dance it to something a bit more recent or 'up to date' than usual, then come to Jivebeat on the 23rd!
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