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Blue Tango Classes


Basics  (Beginners/ Adv. Beginners)
We will cover social tango essentials: posture, partner connection, musicality and basic figures.  Basic figures include walks, crosses, runs, ochos, simple turns and transitions between parallel and cross systems. For new beginners, as well as for experienced dancers who want to strengthen fundamental skills or learn the other gender role. (Pre-requisite for all other Blue Tango Classes).

The cross system (unique to tango) provides dancers with improvisational versatility, a larger repertory of tango figures, and greater intimacy within the embrace. Learn how to transition with ease between the parallel and the cross systems, and to dance classic cross system figures with greater proficiency.

Basics is the most challenging material in tango to learn and dance well.  It is recommended that beginning dancers take Basics level courses for at least a full year, and that experienced dancers revisit Basics regularly  (Basics is free for students who have taken at least four full Basics series and who are registered in a concurrent series).

Intensive Fundamentals Option: Basics 1 & 2
Accelerate the strengthening of your fundamental skills by taking both Basics classes. Technique from Basics 1 is reinforced while it is fresh and more efficiently applied towards new skills in Basics 2 to create dances.

Advanced Beginners 
Explore elements for creating a good dance while strengthening one's foundation.  Find transitions between walks, ochos, turns and basic figures; and distinctions among tango, milonga and vals. Work comfortably within a close embrace.  (Pre-requisite: Tango Fundamentals or 3 months of tango)

Transitions  (Adv Beg / Int)
After learning basic figures, how does one create a dance? We will explore transitional possibilities among basic figures, and develop improvisational skills to make each dance feel fresh and unique.   Pre-requisites: 2 Basics Series or comfort with parallel and cross system walks, cruzadas, ochos and molinetes.

Novel Resolutions!   
Avoid canned figures, discover how to keep one's dancing fresh. Starting with classic intermediate level figures (e.g., pasadas, sacadas, turns, or boleos, etc.) develop skillful approaches leading to a myriad of possible resolutions. Pre-requisites: 3 Basic series or ease with parallel and cross system walks, cruzadas, ochos and simple turns.

Milonga and Vals Basics  (Adv Begin / Int)
What makes a dance a milonga or a vals? How do we use tango steps to dance these?  This is a course on how to dance milonga and vals with respect to musicality, movement dynamics and figures.  Recommended:  2-3 Basics series.
Tango Vals  (Int)
Surges, swirls, suspension and syncopated rhythms give the tango vals its special character.  Working with the four major triple time rhythms of vals, we'll explore powerful approaches for dancing flowing, dynamic and suspenseful valses.

Intermediate Technique     (Int)
Learn technique for figures such as giros (turns), barridas (drags), paradas (stops), sacadas and boleos and their incorporation into a social dance. Dance with rhythmic and melodic variation and musical expression.   (Pre-requisite: 2 Advanced Beginners Sessions or equivalent of 1 year of tango). This is a 1 year+ course.  (Pre-requisite: 2 Advanced Beginners Sessions or equivalent of 1 year of tango).  Various topics, e.g., Ins & Outs of Boleos & Social Ganchos, Turns & Extra-Revolutionary Turns.

Sacadas & Leg Wraps (Intermediate)
Explore a large family of sacadas that vary directionally and dynamically, including low & high, and leader & follower sacadas. Incorporate sacadas & leg wraps into walks and turns on the social floor. Explore how to vary wraps dynamically, dancing them softly or as rhythmic accents. Pre-requisite: 3 Basic series or equivalent.

Advanced Fundamentals - Hard Core Technique for Experienced Dancers: Turns (Intermed / Adv)
They say that it takes an average of 9 years to do a great turn.  We will work on technique to execute a great one in 7 (!)  The course covers exercises for balance, coordination and connection in walks, turns and selected figures.  Recommended: >1.5 years of dedicated dance experience.

Advanced Fundamentals - Hard Core Technique for Experienced Dancers: Dynamics & Engagement    (Int / Adv)
Exercises and drills for leaders and followers will focus on grounding and balance to achieve multifaceted expression in one's movements: intensity, subtlety, strength, softness, suspension, quick agility or dramatic slowness. We will also work on how to create and modulate forces in out-of-phase motion and contra turns. The ENGAGEMENT OF FOLLOWERS is critical to bringing out one's voice and for dancing as a full partner. The follower can express all of the above qualities and enrich the dance. This material is valuable for both open and close style dancing.

Musicality   (Intermed / Adv)
One of the greatest challenges in tango is to create a multi-textured dance that is rich in musical nuances.

This course explores the following topics:
   Distinguishing the Orchestras and how to dance to them
Survey of tango rhythms (marcato, sincopa, 3-3-2, habanera)
   Interweaving of rhythm and melody
   Musical dialogues
   Musical phrasing
   Pauses and Suspensions
   History of Tango Music

Dancing the Musical Classics  (Adv. Beginners / Intermediate)
The four major orchestras of the Golden Era of tango (D'Arienzo, Di Sarli, Troilo and Pugliese) inspire distinct and dynamic tango qualities, i.e., experienced dancers dance differently to each of these orchestras.  Using classic figures, explore in depth how to dance the music of these orchestras with melodic and rhythmic distinction.

Musicality: Tango Orchestras
 & Musical Expression (Intermed / Adv)
 Tango is danced differently depending upon the orchestra. Even within a song, there are ways to vary the dance musically to inspire one's partner.
Topics include:
   Dancing D'Arienzo - Bringing out the soul behind the beat
   Dancing Tanturi - Finding contrast in lyricism
Dancing Laurenz - Surges, suspensions & slingshots
   Dancing Pugliese - Phrasing & building intensity

Musical Rhythms in Tango, Milonga & Vals   (Int / Adv)  From an understanding of musical  rhythms (e.g., the marcato and sincopa of tango, triple time variations of vals), we will explore how to dance in distinctive musical styles, using accents, syncopations and dynamic range. 

Experienced Figures: Changing Dynamics   (Intermed/Adv)
Learn how to generate dynamic changes in your dance, from precise rhythmicity to flowing lilts to dramatic suspensions to fast spins to sweet lyricism.  Play with elasticity and engagement in both closed and open style dancing.

Challenges in Tango   (Adv) 
Challenging material on musciality, dynamics and technique for experienced dancers.  The course incorporates the following themes:   Mirror, Invert, Revert, Reverse, Revoke, Contra, 2's & 4's.


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Close Embrace Fundamentals  (Intermed)
Skills for dancing comfortably within a close embrace.  Work on posture, balance, connection and dancing rhythmically & melodically within a shared axis.  Learn how to mark the music for classic figures which include salida variations, cortes, giros, milonguero-style ochos.  Pre-requisite:  3 Basic series or equivalent, facility with the cross system.  Limited Class Size. 

Cadence, Presence & Classic Figures  (Buenos Aires Tango)   (Intermed)
Dance the close embrace (apilado) style of Buenos Aires milongas.  Dance with cadence and the ability to mark the music.  Explore classic figures that can be done in small spaces and their innovative variations.  Figures include giros, cortes, milonguero-style ochos, cambio de lado, cambio de frente, salida de 1940's.  Pre-requisite: Close Embrace Fundamentals (may be concurrent).

Experienced Close Embrace: Classic & Classy Milonguero Figures    (Int / Adv)
Dance the close embrace (apilado) style of Buenos Aires milongas.  Dance with distinctive cadence to different orchestras.  Explore classic figures in small spaces and their innovative variations.  Figures may include giros, salida de 1940's, sacadas, boleos, reversals, cambio de lado, cambio de frente, changes of direction.  Pre-requisite: Close Embrace Fundamentals (2 series or equivalent).  Limited Class Size.

Tango Lab: Dynamic Motion
Centrifugal Acceleration, Elasticity, Reversals, Suspensions
8:00 PM  Session 1  (Adv. Beginners / Intermediate)
Enrich your tango by incorporating dynamic qualities to classic figures (Pre-req: 2 Basics series, ease with the cross system).  $90

9:15 PM Session 2 -  (Intermediate)
Dance social figures that progress in difficulty arising from Session 1's dynamic themes, such as out-of-phase moves, single axis turns, changes of direction, arrastres, etc.   (Prereq: Session 1 or Instructor Approval)  $90

Off-Axis "Leans" - Cradled
, Suspended & Dynamic Figures  (Intermed / Adv)
Explore dynamic off-axis figures, and how to improvise musically within a social context.  
Focus on Follower's Technique
   Dynamic pro-active engagement – WITHOUT passive “leaning”
   Free leg decorations
   Syncopated Calesitas
   Invisible Colgadas
   Suspended Elasticity
   Incipient Volcadas & Volcada Variations
Pre-requisite: Close Embrace Fundamentals or equiv. 

Close Embrace Vals   (Int / Adv)
Working with the four major triple time rhythms of vals, we'll explore powerful approaches for dancing flowing, dynamic and suspenseful valses. Pre-requisistes: 3 Basic series or ease with parallel and cross system walks, cruzadas, ochos and simple turns.

Close Embrace Milonga - No Sweat Fancy Feet    (Int / Adv)
Learn how to dance to fast music with eas, precision and without rushing. Find a relaxed connection for both the smooth milonga lisa and more rapid traspie.  Explore how milongueros use cadencia to dance a natural and effortless milonga.

FIGURES FOR A small SPACE    (Intermediate / Adv. Intermediate)
Dance richly, fully and intricately within the smallest of spaces; a most useful skill for dancing anywhere (festivals, crowded milongas, house parties or in your living room).

Buenos Aires Primer   (Int / Adv)
OR  "Creating Magic in a Small Space"
This course is for all who want to enjoy dancing in experienced communities, where the floor is generally PACKED, whether it is the milongas of Buenos Aires, at a festival in Denver or the Netherlands, or in Boston at the Zeitgeist.
Topics include:
   Creating rhythmic & lyrical magic within a small space.
   Contrasting dynamics.
   Cool on-the-spot figures.
   Creative slow traveling moves.

Dancing with Musicality is one of the most prized skills among experienced dancers.  We will cover how Followers and Leaders both can musically enhance their dance together. Recommended pre-requisite: Close Embrace Fundamentals, may be concurrent.

Milonguero Nuevo    (Adv)
Find innovative ways to add to your vocabulary within a close embrace. Incorporate nuevo elements socially even on a crowded floor.  Figures may include any of the following: alteration of direction, single axis turns, linear boleos, social ganchos, sacadas & leg wraps. Prerequisite: Two Close Embrace series or equivalent.

Changes of Direction  Advanced)
Investigate how to dance changes of direction comfortably within close embrace, leading to a tremendous expansion of movement possibilities.

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