"Feeling and Sensitivity" Gavito pt.2

“Tango is about feeling and sensitivity, otherwise you are just doing gymnastics. You can do all the steps but it has to have the feeling and sensitivity of authentic tango.”

— Carlos Gavito

Feeling and sensitivity are complex concepts and require some arduous exploration. Nonetheless, if we want to tap the depths of the Tango, according to Gavito, it is a requirement.

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Dance of Romance Revisited.

At the bottom of the stately, brocade staircase was posted a picture of an attractive young woman seductively draped in a silky dress, clinging to her dashing partner. Tango lessons, Thursday evening, in the Moroccan room. We signed up immediately.

What was the lure? Did we envision ourselves transformed into the slinky, sexy couple on the brochure? Patricia and I rarely danced and our bodies were far beyond the slinky stage. Perhaps we were in the mood to do something impetuous and risque …

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Enough Blogging Already?

The Tango embodies the most intense confluence of pleasure, sensuality, physicality, and relational dynamics you are going to come across on the dance floor. Strangely, I come away from a night of dancing not with any feeling of romantic attachment, as one might expect, but rather the sense of having been awakened and nurtured at a soul level.

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Tell Your Face

A smile is worth a thousand glib assurances.

When I read a smile on my partner’s face I relax. I dance better. I trust that I and my partner are equally committed to a pleasant and pleasurable dance.

A smile displaces all the questions of adequacy or judgement: “Am I good enough? Does she want to dance with me? Does she trust my lead/ follow?”

Smiles have a very endearing secondary effect: they make you attractive. No face is so perfect that it is not enhanced by a smile or so disfigured that it is not also beautified by one.

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The Eyes Have it

It is a stroke of genius that the Tango ritualized eye contact -  the cabeceo - as the first and critical element of the dance proposal. This is where it all begins: Eyes connecting from across the room with an affirming nod, raised eyebrows, a look of permission, acceptance, expectation.

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Hard and Soft Dance Skills

Next time you are filling out a job resume, include dancing tango on your resume and list the following personality traits: sensitive, respectful, attentive, a good listener, leader and follower, self-aware, respectful of boundaries, #metoo -proofed, creative, flexible, a good team player, all in addition to being able to pivot on a dime!   

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Double Bubble Tango

Double Bubble Tango.

Have you ever felt as if you were the only couple on the dance floor, that you and your partner were in a world unto yourselves safely cocooned in your own universe, when all you were aware of, other than the music, was the warm, responsive movement of your partner?

Don’t we all want this feeling, all the time? What is the secret?

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