As my first post I would like to share a video, it is one of my favorites, and this is not even a tango video. It’s a TED talk. A TED talk about relationships by Hedy Schleifer, The Power of Connection.
We create momentary relationships with everyone we dance with, and the expectations we bring into the embrace color that relationship.
While this talk is about relationships and life, everything in it also applies to tango. At the very least we create momentary relationships with everyone we dance with, and the expectations we bring into the embrace color that relationship. Our expectations can pollute the space between us in the dance just as the expectations and disappointments we collect pollute the relationships we have in life.
The space between us and our life is our body
But the correlations don’t stop there. I’m particularly fond of Hedy’s rendition of one of her father’s stories about Mr. Goldberg the tailor. Our life, our history and everything in it has a very personal relationship with each of us, the difference is that the space between us and our life is our body. We can pollute our body just as we can pollute our relationships.
The result is like an ill fitting suit, that just happens to be our body
But our body has a very physical reaction, it becomes stiff, it hunches, slouches and wrenches, it shuffles, waddles, and bounces. It can build a shield of ego, or become timid, it can be cold, distant and angry, all of these things build upon us, and are in no way healthy. The result is like an ill fitting suit, that just happens to be our body. These things become our greatest obstacle in learning Argentine tango, as well as living life. To stand tall, move smoothly with confidence, and at the same time not be blinded by ego, these are difficult things after a lifetime of mental pollution.
Through Argentine tango, we are all getting rid of our ill fitting, life essence distorting, suits.
Argentine tango made me aware of my own body’s accumulation of physical pollution, it is something I am still working to eradicate. “My head is like a helium ballon on a string, stretching my spine straight up into the sky.”
In our TangoBreath class we see how our students also become aware of, and struggle for release from, their own personally imposed limitations. It is one of the most rewarding things about our TangoBreath practice, as the weeks go by we are witness to amazing growth and self realization and awareness. TangoBreath practice changes us in ways that are not specific to tango movement, but in everyday posture and movement. The practice permeates our everyday life. We are all getting rid of our ill fitting, life essence distorting, suits.
Meet your partner in the middle of the embrace, with your unencumbered essence.
Enjoy the video, it is one of my favorites. Hedy is a wonderful speaker.
The Power of Connection - Hedy Schleifer