veza - Arm Tone & Placement
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- It Takes Q To Tango
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(From the website): Created in July, 2009 by Erskine Maytorena, a third generation tango musician and opera singer, QTANGO performs authentic Argentine tango arrangements as often as two to three times a week throughout the Southwest for tango dancers and listeners.
- One of the really cool things about Argentine tango is the way the embrace has an energy to it.
- And, part of the reason that you have this energy is because the body isn't fixed.
- So, when you do this, "Ungh", and you tighten everything, it, sort of, blocks energy.
- And on the other hand, if you... So, we don't use the placement of the hand to communicate.
- It's not like, if the arm is here, she knows one thing. And if I move the arm here,she knows another thing.
- N: It's code, yes.
D: Yeah, yeah, you know.
- Underarm turn, double underarm turn. Quadruple, don't stop.
- D: Whatever, I'm exaggerating.
N: So, what's this mean?
D: Yeah, yeah. Fall down.
- So, it's not about placement. Instead, what I do is I have a few pounds of pressure.
- And, if I increase the pressure, she uses that. For example, in this case, to turn.
- D: But, you notice, the hand, actually, doesn't move.
- And, because we're using pressure to communicate, we can keep the arms loose. And just use these few pounds of pressure.
- So... Loose is the wrong word. Let's say, energized. But not fixed, not rigid.
- N: Engaged.
- So, if we do this, what I want you to do, just as an exercise at home, right now,
- Is take both your arms and just reach out, "Ughh". You don't have to make the noise.
- N: I don't know if it works without the noise.
D: So, you reach out. You reach out. Yeah, it helps to make the noise.
- And so, then, after you reach out, I want you to have a friend. Or, even, actually, you could hold on to something.
- And, you can just softly pull in.
- And, I'm pulling in very much from my back. I'm not doing this. I'm doing this, from my shoulder blade.
- And, once we have this sense of reaching out and in, just gently, a few pounds of pressure,
- Then, you can hold each other with a few pounds of pressure. And have this length in the body.
- And then, I want you to be able to softly move the arms.
- N: This is a really good exercise.
D: While keeping pressure.
- And so, the first thing you do in the exercise is that you would be here.
- And leaders, I want you to keep oh, a couple of pounds of pressure with the followers.
- Followers, so, you're not going to move your arms, at the beginning, until he establishes his pressure.
- And then... And then, after that, he's going to move it.
- And I want you to let him move it any direction he wants. And I want you to keep a couple of pounds of pressure.
- Now, guys, the goal isn't to trick her. Go, "Ah!" She didn't get it, right? So, you move slowly.
- But, I want you to say, "Well, does she feel stiff this way? Can I go this way and it's the same pressure?"
- N: This is, actually surprisingly difficult when you start it.
D: Or, will she go this way?
N: And, as it gets easier, the following gets really easier.
- D: And, it's much harder than it seems
D: To keep the pressure the same in all directions.
- So, first, I want this... The leader to do this with the follower.
- Whether can the follower keep the pressure constant as he moves. And then, switch.
- N: OK, let's switch.
D: Oh, yeah, let's switch.
- So, now, I'm following. She's leading.
- So, here, it's hard. 'Cause I'm coming away, and he has to keep pushing.
- And, this is, actually, very good for you, leaders, too. Because it trains you not to make the arm too fixed. Because it tends,
- With many leaders, this tends to happen: "Ugh. Ugh, you, there."
- Right? And it becomes very much arm'y. Instead of just using this gentle pressure.