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Milonguero Style Close Embrace - Introduction And How To Categorize

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There is some use to this classification because it's generally recognized so, if you're a teacher or a festival, it does give some idea of what's there. But, that said, to some extent, we think that this whole classifying of tango is overrated. You hear these stories of serious tango dancers in Buenos Aires saying that each person dances their own tango. We like that.

Artist Name:
Mandragora Tango
Song Title:
La Cumparsita By Matos Rodriguez
Album Title:
Live 2007
Artist Website:

From website: Mandrágora Tango is a tango band headed by bandoneonist Bob Barnes and guitarist Scott Mateo Davies, 2 Minneapolis-based musicians who are wildly passionate about tango. We have been playing tango for dancing and listening since 2001 and we are still going strong. We've played in over 40 cities all over the United States.

This is milonguero style.
D: Was that not milonguero style?
N: No.
D: Why was that not milonguero style?
N: It had too much salon...steps in it.
Well, but I was quick and short and rhythmic?
N: OK.
D: No, that was going to be on camera. Our discussion. It would be interesting.
What's milonguero style and what's not. And they can hear us discuss.
Oh, OK. Let's... That's valid. So, let's leave it, then.
N: We'll take the cut out.
D: Uncut.
N: Yeah. So...
Tell me, then. I thought milonguero style was lots of very small walking and very rhythmic and not lots of different kinds of steps.
Well, while I think, maybe, I would take out the not lots of different kind of steps, because, within rhythm, I think there can be variety,
I think, otherwise, I agree with you. And, what was I doing that wasn't milonguero-ish.
N: You were doing close embrace as if it were a performance.
D: How so?
The non-intuitive combinations of things you did.
For example? She's, like, "I don't remember. It was eons ago".
N: And, anyway, when I dance with David,
D: OK.
N: Most of the time, I have no idea what he's doing. I just have this sense.
OK, well, anyway, that's milonguero style a-la David, which is not really, exactly, milonguero style.
I'd like to add a few comments, though. So, one thing is usually, when I talk to well known Argentinian dancers,
D: They say, "We didn't have all these different styles. We just had tango".
N: Right.
So, I think it's something created by the rest of the world. Because, yeah, they had some, sort of, neighborhoods.
Which had styles that were more open or more closed. Or more rhythmic or more sharp. Or, whatever. Or more smooth.
But here, at least my experience in the US, when people say milonguero style, the mean like she was saying,
D: A close embrace, rhythmic thing that was less about lots of fancy steps,
N: Right.
And more about rhythm,
N: And relating to each other.
D: Being with the music, taking a little bit of space, relating to each other.