When someone says something that stays with you, that hits the nail on the head, that is perfect for that moment.
“You spend many years learning technique, learning to do everything well, everything perfectly…
But afterwards, when you do everything perfectly, you have to become less perfect, you have to ‘mess up’ your style. You have to give it your own personal touch.
That’s when your tango becomes your own, the tango that you feel like a fist in your stomach, something that rips you from the inside, that makes you cry…There are tangos that make me cry. And for that, how long does it take? A year? Two? Ten? Many years. For some people it takes a lifetime.”
From ‘I Wanted to Dance – Carlos Gavito: Life, Passion and Tango’ by Ricardo Plazaola
Buddhists call walking meditation ‘kinhin’. It’s practised between “zazen”, a seated meditation. The idea is to be mindful of your experience whilst walking and staying aware with what is happening in each moment of the walking. Walking in tango when done mindfully can have a very similar effect.
When we start to walk more, repeating the basic movement of putting one foot in front of the other and moving. More of the details start to emerge.
Questions…How can I be smoother? How can I stretch my step and still be connected? How can we be consistent with our walk?
Actions…. I want to receive and give the walk with my upper body open to my partner. I want to feel the floor under my feet. I will feel the moment of being on one foot and searching of my free foot. I want to activate my ankles to help my walk. .
Tango isn’t something you think you want to do until you’ve tried it. Really tried it. It’s challenging, slow and deliberately detailed. It demands patience and concentration, rewarding you with moments of delight, sighs of satisfaction and human connection in a totally unique way.
Without a good teacher though, all you’ll have are a bunch of steps.
Where to start?
With some music – see Feb’s playlist
By listening to a story – try Firewatching (an audio taste)
With your first embrace – come to class on Wednesday.
It’ll be just the beginning, let it arrive to your heart slowly.
‘There are no short-cuts, just hard work and grafting.’