“It was the milongueros who kept Tango alive, preventing the total disappearance of tango for almost 25 years (1960-1985). Each one danced differently from the others. But, between these individual styles, they still shared something in common – incredible dancing skills in crowded spaces, lovers of “circular” dancing (both individually and within the room), active observation of strict floor etiquette (Floorcraft; maintaining eye contact with nearby men), experts in musicality, brilliant movement guides. In addition, these milongueros were lovers of the true closed embrace; often with bad postures that they concealed with the incomparable quality of their dances”
In close embrace, they danced with strong, prominent chests, but relaxed bodies. Learning to engage and maintain core strength, but hold everything else relaxed is an important skill in Tango, as it is in many sports.
“The milongueros completed the embrace with their arms full of emotion”. The milongueros never forced the embrace using their arms as clamps that impede the dissociated dance of women, but neither did they need to break the embrace to allow her more “freedom”. The entire dance takes place within the unbroken circle of the embrace.
How do we describe this type of embrace?” The embrace should be a comfortable, protective, secure, comforting place to be.
Dance with your body, without using the arms or hands to guide. The milongueros possessed the most precious and desirable asset: the Body of Tango. They sent messages and signals from their chests. The chest is the point of contact of the dance partner, the point of connection for the transmission of energy.
So, from the above description, should we dance with the chest?
Not quite. Instead, we must dance with the entire Tango Body with the connected chests. By dancing in this way, you can ensure that any small and subtle movements are fully transmitted to your partner’s body.
Of course, the milonguera must learn to understand, interpret and respond to these tiny intentions. In this type of embrace, there must be a deep, mutual understanding between the couple.
It is from the warm, tender embrace that the deepest and most emotional Tango is found in the milongas, and not outside of them.
After so many years of existence, experimentation, and change in society, the milonguero dance continues to be the most desirable in the milongas. It is highly valued both by men and especially by women, for whom the tango dance is intended. When women find a man dancing with this style, they can feel they are entering a meditation, a higher state of consciousness.
To obtain this type of milonguero chest, takes time, dedication and patience, but it is worth it if you desire to reach the level that makes Tango the most intense, seductive, emotional partner dance of all.
This post is adapted from a post by Raul Cabral
Raul has been in Milongas for almost three uninterrupted decades, also teaching at many of them, and growing up with his students. Analysis and observation help to decipher the secrets of the dance of the Buenos Aires milongas, and to improve his teaching.
He studied the forms and styles that have been in force for 70 years, with the acceptance of the majority of porteños when they go to the milongas. Fortunately in his Tango life he had the honour of sharing evenings with many of the greatest milongueros and being surrounded by their friendship. Many of them are now dancing in heaven. He says, “These experiences do not give me authority, but at least, they allow me to risk offering these opinions to you”.