I lead most of the time I dance tango. I practice my follower’s skills in practicas. In milongas, I will sometimes follow in playful roles swaps with some lady friends.
I love to follow. It has been a process of re-discovering the dance. It made me gain much more appreciation for the dance and in particular, for how a leader can make a dance wonderful.
After reading this entry from tangopilgrim I realized why I love to follow. While leading I always need to be ahead of the follower and the dance in some ways, as a follower I release myself from all that and focus on the present. And the present only.
Recently I had a chance to dance with a relatively famous Tango DJ. I immediately realized she was a really nice person since even though she was tired she still swapped her sandals for some dancing shoes after I asked her. That, on everyone’s book, is a very nice gesture.
We danced and chatted. The dancing was very cool, relaxing, flowy. I went for a laid-back interpretation of the music. Enrique Rodriguez. I shared with her about how I’ve been going back and forth between different approaches to interpreting music. Basically to either try to capture the mood of the whole music or to try and dance every tiny nuance/detail of the song. She joked about it and told me I was maybe worrying to much about it…
That further led us to talk about how we spend our time at the milongas. She then told me something very interesting that reminded me of how I sometimes forget how social the milongas should be. The thing she enjoys more at the milongas, believe it or not, is not actually the non-stop dancing. What she enjoys more is to sit and eat while talking with people mixed with the dancing.
Here’s to food and wine at milongas!
Why can’t I pivot like the pros!
I said hi and she said hi back to me. The last and only time we danced was, according to my recollection, disappointing. To her.
I was nervous since I had seen her dance before. She was obviously a gifted dancer. I could not connect and figure out her style. Nothing in that dance “connected” to me. Not with the music, not with her. My mind had been haunted already with the images of her confidence dancing with great dancers. I could not shake that off. The dance was not our dance, it was someone else’s, badly impersonated. A sad affair.
She remembered me. She remembered me as a person.
In the milonga world there are dancers and amazing human beings that love to dance. I admire the latter. I am grateful she reminded me of that.