In the last few months we have given some rather intense workshops for beginners that included some prerequisite homework. Among them was a series of challenges to get our students into the proper frame of mind for the classes. Everyone came to class with an idea of what they were getting into, and a fresh view of themselves standing and walking through their days. This greatly facilitated the classes and allowed everyone the chance to really get a handle on this dance we love. This challenge is an expansion of the first challenge we gave as homework.
Walking is something we do every day without thinking. This challenge is about finding awareness as you walk and stand through out your day. Once you do, walking and standing may never be the same for you again.
To begin, we will start with a concentrated effort in finding awareness. You will want to revisit this concentrated exercise every so often. Over time, you will find your awareness of how you walk and stand invading your everyday movement, from standing up from your desk, to walking down the hall, to pushing a cart or standing in line at the grocery.
Our tango, our life, and self perception are reflections of one another.
Tango! Life! blah, blah, blah. So many ways to relate the two. Metaphors galore! This isn’t that. This is about awareness. This is about getting feedback from your dance about your life. Tango can help you find your perception of self. Tango can tell you when your life is going right or wrong. When we begin to learn tango many of us have no idea that we are embarking on a journey to overcoming years of conditioning, belief of self, and our own perception of who we are in relation to the world. Our tango, our life, and self perception are reflections of one another. We must dance who we are.
But our tango, life, and self perception is not always an ideal relationship. Finding harmony among them might be one of the keys to finding harmony within ourselves. The relationships and experiences we have had in life shape us and condition us. The question is what do we accept, and what do we deny. What defines us? We may have bad posture and movement purely as a result of our self image. The largest hurdle many of us face in learning tango is not technique or music, but that of confronting our self belief in relation to the world. The image we have of our selves can beat us down, it harms our posture and our movement. Our life image can also be positive, it can elate us, create confidence, and strength. In turn, our movement in tango becomes clear, our posture healthy.
Due to popular demand, Eric and Susannah are excited to announce another immersive foundations tango class!
This class will follow a different format from the last, with a stronger emphasis on connection and subtle movement, while diving deeper into visualizing proper posture and movement. We will be incorporating parts of our Tangobreath vinyasa in class to create awareness and Provide practice techniques that will go well beyond class time.
This 4-hour class continues our exploration of essential technique in Argentine tango to prepare you to attend milongas (social dances) and practicas in a much shorter time than a more traditional series. We will also be inviting experienced dancers in our community to participate, so that you will have the opportunity to work with individuals who can give you personalized and knowledgeable feedback during the class.
Saturday, October 6th
1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
The West Asheville Vineyard, 717 Haywood Road
DEADLINE FOR REGISTERING: Friday, September 28th
We need to have a minimum number of participants to offer this class, so we encourage you to pre-register or contact us soon, if you are interested! We will also be providing more pre-class study material and exercises, so be sure to let us know you are coming!
Additional IMPORTANT information:
We structure our classes in unique ways in order to delve into deep studies and explorations of our bodies and the material. Since we want you to get the best experience and assimilate the most from this intense class, we will have some required exercises and material before the lesson. We will provide all of this material to you a week or more in advance.
Eric and Susannah of TangoBreath are excited to announce a new immersive beginning tango class!
This is the perfect opportunity to dive into this dance if you have been curious. And this is the class for you if you have been wanting to have an intense, working review of the heart of this dance — core movement, good posture, and refined body awareness!
This 4-hour class would cover essential technique in Argentine tango to prepare you to attend milongas (social dances) and practicas in a much shorter time than a more traditional series. We will also be inviting experienced dancers in our community to participate, so that you will have the opportunity to work with individuals who can give you personalized and knowledgeable feedback during the class.
Sunday, August 26th
1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
The West Asheville Vineyard, 717 Haywood Road
DEADLINE FOR REGISTERING: Friday, August 17th
We need to have a minimum number of participants to offer this class, so we encourage you to pre-register or contact us soon, if you are interested!
Additional IMPORTANT information:
We structure our classes in unique ways in order to delve into deep studies and explorations of our bodies and the material. Since we want you to get the best experience and assimilate the most from this intense class, we will have some required exercises and material before the lesson. We will provide all of this material to you two weeks in advance.
Most of the time when we think of our spiral energy as it relates to tango, we consider the torsion that happens in our torso, as our hips and ribs twist in opposite directions. However, there are many other “spirals” that happen in our bodies, and we would like to draw attention to the spiral that happens in our legs as we take a step. Understanding how the leg articulates at the hip joint during our walk can also transform our dance.
Becoming aware of the circles and spirals that happen in our body as we walk.
This challenge builds on our last challenge, Sinking into our Standing leg. We will use that same exercise, but apply it to every step we take as we walk. Walking down the street, the hallway, the grocery store, give this a try, but try not to think about it too much. Do this once at home, with focus, then do it whenever you walk somewhere, even if it is just for a few steps. Our goal is to become aware of the circles and spirals that our body creates internally as we walk. Ultimately we want to relax into a healthy balanced walk and remain aware of how our body is moving and how it feels.
Aligning our whole body, sinking into the ground through our standing leg
For those who come to TangoBreath, you have heard us often recall the image of Michelangelo’s David. We talk about sinking into the standing leg through the whole side body and dropping, or relaxing, the free hip. Much to our delight, when we were in Tuscon, Murat and Michelle Erdemsel showed a picture of David in one of their classes on alignments! They also shared a picture of Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus, which provides us a connection to the feminine form.
As a continuation of last week’s challenge, Finding stability in our pelvis, in which we perceived subtle engagement in the area between the sacrum and hip joint, we are going to concentrate on releasing this same area. Balancing the internal dynamic between engagement and release is important to achieve our greatest flexibility, strength, and resiliency in our joints.
If you have been to our tango classes, you know we always incorporate the pelvic floor in its role toward solid, fluid and confident movement. Here is a more comprehensive class that starts in the hips and sacrum and moves up the spine in a full exploration of how our bodies move. We will provide visualizations and exercises that will have everyone creating holistic movement that can be used in everyday life and tango.
These are the basic concepts that will allow anyone to see and use a plethora of turns and many other movements.
We follow up our natural movement class with a class about the axis of movement. Building on the ideas of the first class, we will explore how to make our circular movement natural and fluid while we learn to visualize and use the axis of movement in each step. These are the basic concepts that will allow anyone to see and use a plethora of turns and many other movements.
Finding and using natural movement in your dance. 1-2:30 PM.
Relaxing into natural and healthy movement is one of the keys to a comfortable and fluid dance. We will help you explore and discover your natural movement and how it applies to tango. This class will help everyone be more connected to their partner and the ground in a more relaxed way.
A multitude of turns: Using and moving the axis of movement. 3-4:30 PM.
Understanding the axis of movement is a key concept to understanding all turns and most other movements in tango. This class will explore circular movement and the many choices created when we are able to see and use the axis of movement in every step.
HOMEWOOD MILONGA 8:00 PM to 1:00 AM
Lisa Jacobs will be our DJ.
Acupressure and Tui Na (Chinese massage) by Katie Bruce L.AC. We are pleased to announce that Katie Bruce L.AC. will be offering acupressure and some Tui Na (Chinese Massage) during the milonga. Visit Katie’s web site for more information! Katie will be available from 8:00-10:00 for a suggested donation of $10.
Some wine, snacks and, as always, a special treat prepared by Susannah will be provided. BYOB.
As always, we will be available for private lessons. Please contact us to make arrangements.
The flow of movement between partners can appear magical.
Every week in TangoLab, we start class with some exercise to create awareness of our partners through the embrace. Our goal is to encourage dancers to create and sense movement in response to one another. Beginners, even those that come from other dance backgrounds, are always amazed at how this internal flow of movement works to create a conversation between partners. When done very subtly, it can be difficult to see any flow of movement, yet we are speaking volumes, and responding to one another. It might seem like magic.
Explaining what needs to happen to internalize the flow of movement is difficult, however, which is why it is so important to choose our words and imagery carefully. There are many phrases and words that are commonly and casually used when teaching or learning Argentine tango. In our teaching, we have discarded many of them because they are vague or have multiple meanings. It is a careful practice to put these things away, not use them, and find a thorough and meaningful replacement when needed.