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December 31, 2004

Yulia Sighting

Have you ever wondered what happened to that tango dancer from Springfield, IL, Yulia Kriskovets?

She has moved to Washington, DC, and has become a tango DJ there. She usually goes to the Ann Arbor festivals, so some Illinoisans may be able to catch up with her there. Yulia can be reached at kriskovets@yahoo.com

Yulia is a recent addition to the list of DJs in Washington DC. She started dancing tango in Illinois, where the closest milonga was more than 1.5 hours away. Coming from this background, Yulia appreciates the diversity in our local community. When DJ-ing, Yulia offers a mixture of Golden Age and Old Guard tango music to keep dancers on the floor, making them easily forget the time they should have headed for home hours before. In dancing, Yulia values musicality and emotional connection. Also, Milonga de Suenos is where Yulia Dj-ed her first time and we are happy to have her talent blossom before us!

PostScript - January 2005: Just after the New Year, Yulia rejoined her tango friends in Champaign-Urbana for an evening at the Cowboy Monkey tango night, on the same day that she deposited her thesis at University of Illinois Springfield. We had an ice storm that night, but Yulia drove back safely.

Posted by joegrohens at 07:42 PM | Comments (0)

December 30, 2004

Tango Video Clips

Dirk Barbier's VideoClips-Gallery has some good stuff.

Of course, so does mine. (We all seem to be copying from each other.)

Posted by joegrohens at 11:10 PM | Comments (0)

Junior Cervila

Read Jackie Wong's interview with Brazilian dancer, actor and filmmaker Antonio Cervila Junior, who was seen in Carlos Saura's Tango and figured prominently in the final dance sequence.

Junior: You can dance tango to EVERYTHING. Well, I can because I want to. Piazzolla is a genius. Great to dance, but traditionalists don't like him. So they don't want to dance to his music. Then of course, it becomes impossible. The only possible things are the ones that you believe.

I came from Copacabana and would turn tango into salsa, mixing the two dances. I loved it. And then turn Milonga into Merengue. Anyway, I don't like to say that I am right and traditionalists are wrong because there is no right or wrong. It is only what you really feel. And everybody agrees that tango is a feeling. So, if you don't feel Piazzolla, don't do it. But shut up and let other people be happy.

In the forties Julio De Caro was considered too modern and people from that time used to say that the real tango were the old ones from 1910. So the question is not what is tango, but WHEN. A 40's tango was not tango for a 1910's dancer. So a 2000's tango will never be tango for a 60's dancer. And it's not a physical age, but where in the timeline you place your head. There are teenagers that are more traditional then older people.

[...]Tango is so stuck in one place. I think tango can give much more than it is giving. Tangueros only have to realize that everything is changing. We can't dance exactly like in the 40's because we are not in the 40's. The world has changed and so has changed people. If a tanguero is very traditional and thinks that everybody has to dance like in the 40's ONLY, I think that he should not use TV or cellular phones. He has to live like on those days. My choreography is modern. My dance at the milonga is calm and subtle: introspective. My productions try to bring young people to tango.

I became intrigued by Junior back in 1999 when Alberto and Valorie brought to town a CD music compilation that Junior had made. I don't know if the CD was ever published; it may have been just a pre-release version. It was called "Tangos Instrumentales para Bailar," but Carlota and I always referred to it as "The Junior CD" (as in "oh, that tune was on the Junior CD!"), and it influenced our tango listening at an early stage.

Here is the playlist.

Tangos Instrumentales para Bailar
  1. Cafe Dominguez - Angel D'Agostino
  2. Gallo Ciego - Osvaldo Pugliese
  3. Nochero Soy - Osvaldo Pugliese
  4. Bahia Blanca - Carlos Di Sarli
  5. El Pollo Riccardo - Leopoldo Federico
  6. El Andariego - Osvaldo Pugliese
  7. Racing Club - Angel D'Agostino
  8. Inspiracion - Annibal Troilo
  9. Recuerdo - Horacio Salgan
  10. Comme Il Faut - Carlos di Sarli
  11. Fuego Artificiales - Armando Pontier
  12. Boedo - Francini / Pontier
  13. Shusheta - Horacio Salgan
  14. Cuando Llora La Milonga - Alfredo Di Angelis
  15. El Internado - Los Solistas de D'Arienzo
  16. El Chamuyo - Domingo Federico
  17. El Rey del Compas - Juan D'Arienzo
  18. El Cencerro - Juan D'Arienzo
  19. Ataniche - Roberto Firpo
  20. Sabado Ingles - Roberto Firpo

And now there is his very exciting show Latin Dance Carnival. Not just anyone can put together a dance review like this one! This guy is deeply talented and intellectually very interesting. View the 2002 show video and 2004 show slideshow.

Posted by joegrohens at 10:48 PM | Comments (0)

December 28, 2004

Dance Roller Skating Patterns

These dance-skating diagrams are cool, and look pretty accessible. I think notation like this could be useful for describing tango dance, although I am not exactly sure what the codes mean. My own notation evolves, but is not systematic.

If anyone can explain figure skating codes, I would be grateful for a reply in the comments link, below.

(click these for enlarged view)

Posted by joegrohens at 01:22 AM | Comments (6)

Power to the Tangueros

This interesting tango graffitti art comes from a collection of Photos from Barcelona.

Posted by joegrohens at 12:38 AM | Comments (0)

December 27, 2004

Bajofondo Tango Club

Pirineos Sur, Festival Internacional de las Culturas

July 10, 2004 Lanuzza, Spain (Pyrennees)- The international culture festival "El Festival Pirineos Sur" included the first live performance of Bajofondo Tango Club, with Adriana Varela, Javier Casalla y Cristóbal Repetto.

Read here for some interesting Background on some Bajofondo members. Reading this you quickly realize that these musicians do not think they are producing "tango" music. They are trying to create something new, that integrates tango, rock, electronica. I love the creativity and intertextuality of this music. In the song "Corazon", for instance, they sample Polaco Goyenache "senors, senoras...." I get goosebumps.

To quote keyboardist Luciano Supervielle:

- The fact is that I do hip hop. The things that serve me as the tango are those that I can associate with my genre. As in all work of experimentation, there are things that stay of side. But the tango and the hip hop share a dance origin, then there are many things that one knows that can be associated. Anyhow, if I do a contribution to some evolution it is to that of the hip hop or of the electronic music, not to that of the tango. The new tango is going to arise from a type that is tanguero, that he dedicates ten hours per day to doing tango. And if it approaches the electronic music, it will do it from the tango. I am of another side. { from }

J.Campo says the same thing in a different interview:

I think it's clear that this is not tango in a traditional sense. It's electronic music with a Tango flavor. We tried to mix both genres and we got something totally new. We'll wait and see how the public reacts. { from }

Anyway, one of these days, a tanguero musician will weigh in with some contemporary sounds, and then we'll have music for a milonga. On the other hand, Adriana Varela is one of the outstanding singers of tango argentino. The sound of her voice on Perfume and Mi Corazon definitely infuse these tracks with tango weight.

Watch a video of Bajofondo Tango Club in Performance: Bajofondo Tango Club - Sadler's Wells - June 2004

Sample Bajofondo tracks at Tangostore.com.

More links:

a Wifiblanes.com weblog » Bajo Fondo Tango Club en La Paloma(review of show in La Paloma)

MensTennisForums.com - Music (interview with Campo)

Posted by joegrohens at 11:41 PM | Comments (0)

December 13, 2004

Los Guapos

On Flickr photo-sharing, Lujan posted these photos from Buenos Aires that he took last July. Click for larger view.

I reflect that there is a lot to be said for walking with one's head up! Man these guys look good.

Posted by joegrohens at 03:26 AM | Comments (0)

December 10, 2004

Por Amor de Tango


A Toronto tango dancer (Carolyn Dallman Downes) and her friends make a film about what tango improvisation means to them.

For some time, I had wanted to make a film about what Argentine tango means to me, and what I think it means to the ordinary person who dances just for the love of it. Tango is not the highly choreographed dance we usually see on screen and stage; for the average person, it's about improvisation--the act of being totally present with a partner in the creation of a dance.

That's not a bad creative group project... a little different than doing a show, and perhaps more personal. We could do something like that in our town.

Slide show here: Por Amor De Tango. I think a DVD can be purchased from the filmmaker at dallmandownes@sprint.ca.

Posted by joegrohens at 01:55 PM | Comments (0)