While all types of dance confers some types of benefits, Argentine tango dancing, in particular, has documented evidence that these areas are improved in both healthy and disabled populations. Gender roles also plays a big part in the mechanics of tango due to the tango needing a leader. But in more recent times this is being challenged due to woman not wanting to be dependent on the male for the dance. In the early 1900s, there were often more male dancers than female so the dance was performed between two men. This allowed for both men to learn the leading and following roles of tango and adapt to both lead equally in the dance. This changed the mechanics of the dance to be closer to two equally leading roles between men and women or same sex pairs.
Finally, the amount of time the dancers stay on the ground can vary, with some tango routines requiring the dancers to keep feet in the air for the prolonged period of time, such as with moves “boleo” and “gancho” . Tango canyengue is a rhythmic style of tango that originated in the early 1900s and is still popular today. It is one of the original roots styles of tango and contains all fundamental elements of traditional Tango from the River Plate region . In tango canyengue the dancers share one axis, dance in a closed embrace, and with the legs relaxed and slightly bent. Tango canyengue uses body dissociation for the leading, walking with firm ground contact, and a permanent combination of on- and off-beat rhythm.
Mariano Mores played a significant role in the resurgence of the tango in 1950s Argentina. When the tango began to spread internationally around 1900, cultural norms were generally conservative, and so tango dancing was widely regarded as extremely sexual and inappropriate for public display. Additionally, the combination of African, Native American and European cultural influences in tango was new and unusual to most of the Western world. Tango is a partner dance, and social dance that originated in the 1880s along the Río de la Plata, the natural border between Argentina and Uruguay. It was born in the impoverished port areas of these countries, in neighborhoods which had predominantly African descendants. The tango is the result of a combination of Rioplatense Candombe celebrations, Spanish-Cuban Habanera, and Argentinean Milonga.
A newer style sometimes called tango nuevo or “new tango” was popularized after 1980 by a younger generation of musicians and dancers. Ástor Piazzolla, composer and virtuoso of the bandoneón (so-called “tango accordion”) played a major role in the innovation of traditional tango music. The embrace is often quite open and very elastic, permitting the leader to initiate a great variety of very complex figures. This style is often associated with those who enjoy dancing to jazz- and techno-tinged, electronic and alternative music inspired in old tangos, in addition to traditional Tango compositions. Originating in Buenos Aires in the 18th century, tango brought together working class European immigrants, indigenous Argentinians and former slaves. The dance’s popularity meant that it quickly expanded out of Argentina, with several different styles developing in Europe and North America.
Gaby Mataloni and Andrea Uchitel are part of the TTD, and are organising distribution of food bags to members of the tango community in need. This week they use the house of a German archaeologist, friend of Andrea Uchitel, a tango dancer and teacher. The house is empty and it’s a perfect place to organise the bags, which are filled thanks to donations of products and money.
In the year 1910, history of tango was changed forever with the arrival of bandoneon from Germany to Buenos Aires, where it became inextricably linked with tango music from then on. In the 2nd decade, tango was featured on up to 5,500 gramophone records in Argentina. Original tango was given birth by the mix of styles that were brewing in the port cities and lower-class districts of Buenos Aires and Montevideo. The early versions of the dance are not recorded in history, and only the most popular type of dance managed to survive as Traditional Argentine Tango, which also continued to morph and change into other styles over the many years of modern tango’s history. The commonplace use of the word Tango in Argentina gained traction around 100 years later, near the very end of 19th century.