A meeting between tradition and modernity - searching for the essence of tango

Article by Ute Neumaier, Buenos Aires, published in the German magazine Tangodanza 46, April 2011

Tango is on the move … but to where? After many attempts to rejuvenate it, after its break away from tradition, and after a return to seek its traditional roots, discussion these days revolves, above all, around one question: How can tango continue to evolve without losing its essence?

Three people who could not be more different undertook together the search for an answer: Carlos Pérez and Rosa Forte, icons of salon tango, and the “young rebel” Gabriel Glagovsky, tamed by the passing of time.

Carlos Pérez and Rosa Forte have been together for 55 years. Since 1996, they’ve been organizers of the práctica at Club Sunderland, in the Villa Urquiza neighborhood of Buenos Aires – where salon tango champions have come from for the past six years. Despite all their success, Carlos and Rosa remain humble. In their hearts there is room for all young dancers. Often those who lack the means to ever dream of taking a private class with them receive classes nonetheless, at no charge. Because Carlos and Rosa’s mission is to give back to tango what tango has given to them.

Gabriel Glagovsky (38, ex-accountant) is the founder of Tango Cool, a contemporary and successful práctica in Villa Malcolm. First a rocker, and since 1998 a tanguero, Gabriel became known as the idealistic enfant terrible of “youth tango”. Sure of himself and his ideas, he works incessantly on many projects. The most important of all is advancing with the exchange between traditional and modern tango. For Gabriel tango is, aside from a social responsibility, a cultural asset that must be protected.

Ute Neumaier interviewed the three of them about this interesting project.

You come from completely different tango universes. How did you meet?

GABRIEL: It was in 2007; it was something of an unhappy meeting. I was supposed to perform with my partner of the time, but when we started, it just didn’t work. After a number of goes we gave up and there was no show. It was awful! All the dancers, teachers, and milongueros were there. Afterwards Carlos came up to me and said: “I like what you do. Why don’t you come and take a few classes with me?” He was the only person who said a word to me.

ROSA: I was angry and asked him, “Why do you do these things?” But that’s how he is. He loves people who are serious, who are talented, and who respect tango; and he gives them his time.

CARLOS: When I like something, I can’t hold back. It makes me happy to be able to pass on what I know, and watch people grow and follow their path. Sometimes I get angry, too, with those who have talent and don’t use it or lose their way. With them I take on the role of strict teacher, which normally I’m not.

From there the idea was born to organize a meeting of traditional and modern tango?

GABRIEL: Not so quickly, no. Some time passed before we came up with the idea. First I went to Carlos and Rosa’s práctica. As a consequence of attending their classes I was constantly exposed to the two “schools”, and in time the idea was born.

In May 2010 the Festival Tango-Etnia was held in Bassano del Grappa, Italy, under the name “Classic Tango – Modern Tango”, with three dance couples. The authorities on traditional salon tango were Carlos and Rosa; Silvia Rosso and I represented modern tango; and Laura Meló and Ricky Barrios, who have been dancing since the 1980s, represented the intermediate generation. We held classes together and apart, a práctica in the Tango Cool style and another in the Sunderland style. There was a talk in which we showed, with videos, dancers representing different styles, and through that the evolution of tango. And we organized a free dance in the piazza, open to the public, those who danced and those who didn’t, because we wanted to bring tango to those who didn’t know it, as well.

Our objective was to reveal what the styles have in common, show how they differ and how they can complement each other, and to find an answer to the question of how tango can continue to evolve without losing its essence. It was a retrospective, going back to the way things were, tango as a social phenomenon, the close embrace and so on… after all this endeavor to be different that had predominated in young tango. In one class, we dealt with the issue of dancing on a full dance floor, in harmony with the other dancers and respecting them. You can’t imagine how much the students’ dancing had changed when we saw them at the milonga that night! What’s more, there were men who cried when they saw Carlos and Rosa dance that night; they were so moved!

What moved people so much? What was so different from other festivals?

CARLOS: At first people were dubious, but then when they realized what we’re like and how we do things, the ice was broken. Perhaps this has more to do with how we are than with how we teach or dance.

GABRIEL: It was Carlos and Rosa who were extraordinary; they touch your heart, in life and in their dance. Some milongueros who are celebrated today weren’t considered great dancers in the past, but today they’re considered so because they’re still around. But Carlos was already well known when he was young.

Carlos holds up a poster from 1958 that announces “Carlos and partner”, and explains to us that, in those days, only the name of the male dancer appeared, not of the woman, because she was secondary.

These days you hear often of celebrated teachers, many of whom are more a catastrophe for their students than anything else. And at the same time there are marvelous teachers who don’t go around the milongas marketing themselves or following the latest trends. Carlos and Rosa are part of this group. They give wonderful classes, they’re successful and they don’t view tango as a business, even though they earn money from it. Carlos teaches for love, passion, and idealism, and that’s something worth letting people know.

You dance very differently. What brings you together?

CARLOS: I saw Gabriel dance and I saw myself as a young man. Far from being similar, still there’s something that’s akin between us. His movements are those of a young person: fast, light, and loose. Ours are heavier, more concentrated, and there are more years in them. I think it’s the quality of the movements that unites us.

ROSA: For me it’s the musicality.

GABRIEL: Perhaps it’s the sincerity we bring to tango. The phenomenon of the tango teacher is something that began only the 1990s. Initially only the elderly taught tango and it wasn’t highly respected. And well before that, there was no need of teachers because people taught tango to each other at home. But we’re also in agreement about our concept of teaching. For example, we agree that the lead doesn’t come solely from the man’s chest. Carlos didn’t dance for 30 years and didn’t hear about this fashion that the man leads from the chest. I also distanced myself from this concept. The body of the couple has four legs, there’s a shared centre, and if you move in relation to this centre, the couple also responds, automatically, or else you would fall.

Truly, this surprises me. I always thought the man led from the chest. Carlos, how do you do it?

CARLOS: With the arm. Leading from the chest causes the man’s chest to feel wooden, or causes him to hold the woman too tightly. For the women the man’s embrace shouldn’t be an issue, rather it should be enjoyable, a pleasure. And the man needs to be a gentleman in the dance. Kyoko, the 2009 champion, said I have the best embrace in the world. I think what she meant to say was that my embrace feels nice, it’s soft.

ROSA: He leads me with his whole body; it feels like the whole of him leads me.

Gabriel, I’m familiar with your classes and with those of Carlos and Rosa. I can’t see how both styles can be put together; they’re so different! Exactly how did you make it work in Italy?

CARLOS: It was very much improvised. These days we’ve evolved it more, and we show even more how the two teaching styles can complement and enrich each other.

GABRIEL: For example, typical of salon tango is this way of walking without lifting the feet, which in castellano we call caminar a tierra – grounded walking. Carlos explained how, and I followed up with an exercise so they could understand it and feel it. Carlos’ explanations were like in the old days, more illustrative, practical. Mine were more playful and reflected the modern way of explaining movements. But both things created the same result and strengthened it.

ROSA: Gabriel brings together “our” tango and modern elements and he did that in Italy. He conveyed the energy, the dynamic of his youthful tango; and we conveyed the calmness and gentleness of ours. And the students could take advantage of both and integrate what they most liked.

CARLOS: At the milongas during the event, at night, we saw what the participants needed, what they lacked. And the next day we taught it. We always talked from different perspectives, but we arrived at the same conclusion.

Let’s go back in time. How did your tango life begin, Gabriel?

GABRIEL: It was in 1998. I started with Chiche and Marta, Fernando Galera and Vilma Vega, Julio Balmaceda and Corina de la Rosa, Eduardo Capussi and Mariana Flores, among others. Only after quite a while, I came to modern tango and encountered a different generation of teachers – such as Damián Essel and Nancy Louzán, Chicho Frumboli and Eugenia Parrilla, Fabián Salas and Carolina del Rivero, Gustavo Naveira and Giselle Anne. But there were things in the classes that I didn’t like: the basic step, sequences and figures. They didn’t feel right to me because you couldn’t use them in the milonga.

Tango nuevo was born from an attempt to take elements of stage tango and modify them for use in the milonga. In the 1980s stage dancers, like Roberto Herrera and Vanina Bilous, created new moves for their shows, which the young dancers of the 1990s modified. But what came out of that was too far removed from the reality of the dance and I wasn’t convinced by it.

A group of us, at that time, wanted to enrich tango with youthful elements. We didn’t want to invent some “new” tango nor break with the “old”. In 2003, we rented a warehouse in which to practice. Among the group were Ismael Ludman, Mariela Pandelo, Felipe Slimovich, Mario de Camilis, Paula Ferrío, Pablo Kliksberg, Guillermo Cerneaz and Paula Rampini. Later we organized parties, first for our friends and later for all young people dancing tango. They were well received, because there were only traditional milongas with older dancers. Later the place was closed for security reasons and we moved to Villa Malcolm.

Carlos and Rosa, your tango biography evolved in a completely different way, didn’t it?

CARLOS: Yes. I began when I was 12 years old. I was the youngest of them all and the eldest men took me along to the dances. I was tall, I looked older, and I always wore a tie. The great dancers, all 10 to 15 years older, looked after me: Gerardo Portalea, José Vásquez Lampazo, Eduardo “Parejita” Pareja, Mingo Canónico, Osvaldo “Nene Fo” Mossi, “el Gallego”, Alberto Villarrazo. They’d say: “But don’t laugh! Or they’ll realize how young you are.” The things they did to get the girls! But I was no competition for them; I was too young. That’s why they even told the women to dance with me. In that way I was able to learn to dance easily and quickly.

ROSA: I was 17. When I was 19, my older brothers took me to a dance. My parents didn’t know. It wasn’t until I met Carlos that they found out, and then they wouldn’t let me go out anymore. After we became engaged, I was allowed to go again, but only with my brothers.

CARLOS: My parents didn’t want me hanging around in those dubious circles either. The milongas in Argentina were never a good social scene. They weren’t then and they’re not now. There were odd people, there were miscreants. About 90% of it was about women and 10% about the dance. Today, unfortunately, the world of tango has become very commercial, a business, where money is most important. That ruins a lot. But in those days I didn’t know anything about all that, and I would enthusiastically go out dancing 21 times a week. Three times a day, of course (he laughs). In the old days a dancer had more success with the girls than a movie star.

ROSA: I didn’t go out dancing as much as him and I didn’t get to know so many milongas. He didn’t take me to some of them; he liked to go alone.

CARLOS: Yes (he laughs), for example to Club de Estudiantes de Buenos Aires, a club with a straw roof. Such beautiful women there! All the milongas were organized on basketball courts that had no roof. Some of them still exist, for example Sunderland and El Oeste, but these days they have a roof (he laughs).

GABRIEL: I was told that in the 1970s, at Villa Malcolm, they would kick out anyone seen dancing cheek to cheek.

CARLOS: I’ve never heard that. What you see today in milongas like Cachirulo, where they use a whistle when people don’t respect the rules; that never existed before. It’s a lie, but it’s amusing. Men and women weren’t seated separately either. They were separated in the sense that the women were seated and the men were standing elsewhere. Even so, Cachirulo has something from the old days: people dress very well.

ROSA: How you dressed was always very important. Men could only enter wearing a suit and tie. There were floor-keepers who made sure that only well-dressed people were there, and that no one was disrespectful. But this was all done in a very discreet way.

Rosa, didn’t it bother you that Carlos would go dancing without you?

ROSA: Of course it did! But I had to accept it; I had no choice. Lucky that at first I didn’t know (she laughs).

CARLOS: In those days, in some social circles, you didn’t tell people you danced tango. These days you’re praised for being a milonguero, back then it was dishonorable. A milonguero was a good-for-nothing, a womanizer…

ROSA: A woman who danced tango was considered something of a hussy. The simple act of wearing shoes with thin straps was enough to ensure suspicious looks.

What happened to tango in those days?

CARLOS: Up to the 1940s it grew and it was a huge social phenomenon. In those years Petroleo[1] invented the giro, which gave more elegance to tango. In 1950 the boogie came to Argentina; and in 1955 rock arrived. The girls liked dancing rock more than tango, and we, the boys, followed. From 1954 to 1964 the tango was slowly disappearing.

ROSA: (Protests) But the bit about Petroleo you were told about, you didn’t live it!

CARLOS: Of course! You know when I was born! In 1943 or 1944, tango reached its ceiling, and that lasted until 1957 or 1958, perhaps until the 1960s. From there the fall began, so that by 1964 there was hardly any tango.

How did people dance when you started?

CARLOS: In the 1950s, everyone danced within a style more or less similar, in spite of each person having their individual style. There weren’t so many branches like there are today. Before, every woman encountered in each dancer the same gentle embrace, at least if they didn’t dance in the city centre or Parque Patricios. They danced harder, more violently there. They never danced well in the central-city cafes. It was all about the pick-up, and holding the woman as tightly as possible.

Outside Buenos Aires, in the bigger clubs of the suburbs, they danced salon tango to the beat of orchestras, like Carlos Di Sarli and Osvaldo Fresedo, and there was a very good level of dancing. It was an elegant tango, with pauses, with long steps, and without complicated figures, which later came to be called, by mistake, “Villa Urquiza style,”[2] which is the tango that you see danced today in the world championships. Milonguero tango is something that we referred to as tango petitero, because that’s what they danced in the petit cafes in which the “good boys” of the Barrio Norte were found. Once, a man needed three years to learn to dance salon tango, but tango petitero you could learn in three months.

Carlos and Rosa, why did you stop dancing tango for 30 years?

CARLOS: It wasn’t a decision we made, it just happened that way. Tango was dying; in the four or five places that still existed only the elderly attended and the respect towards them and the sense of being distanced from them was much greater than it is today.

ROSA: When people got married, they generally stopped dancing tango. With our marriage we started another life. With different friends, who didn’t dance tango, we went out to dinner, to the cinema, to the theatre; we danced and listened to jazz, which was very much in fashion then.

CARLOS: I don’t recall having once spoken to Rosa about tango during those years. It wasn’t a topic for discussion.

But there were also those who couldn’t give up tango and who, after they married, went dancing in secret.

CARLOS: Yes, there were those who couldn’t live without tango. Portalea had psychological problems and consulted a doctor who “prescribed” tango because, according to him, his soul was sick. Lampazo left his wife and his four children, and lost his business with numerous employees. He left everything for tango. Fino had a moving business and when he married in 1959, he officially left tango, but on Saturdays, he used to escape the house on all sorts of pretexts in order to go dancing.

And after a break of 30 years, one day you simply returned to the milongas? Did you still know how to dance?

CARLOS: We ran into an old friend in the street, and he invited us to Sin Rumbo. They wanted to present me and they wanted me to perform. Obviously at one o’clock in the morning. I told him, “Are you crazy? At one in the morning?” because at that time, in general, I was already in bed. But there was no way out, and that’s how it all began.

ROSA: It’s like riding a bike; you don’t forget. You carry it inside you.

CARLOS: How the world of tango had changed in the meantime! I couldn’t believe it. In Sunderland there was no cabaceo! In Sin Rumbo an old friend came over to our table and told me his wife wanted to dance with me! I think I went red with embarrassment.

ROSA: One night someone came up to the table to ask me to dance. Naturally I said no! Women fought between themselves for dances and over the dancers. That never existed before!

CARLOS: (he laughs) Yes it did, Rosa! But you didn’t notice.

Since 1996, you’ve been running your práctica, which is always very popular. How do you teach and what’s the secret of your success?

CARLOS: The práctica is held on Mondays and Wednesdays, from 8pm to 10.30pm, and we teach salon tango.

ROSA: The first 45 minutes are spent on walking, ochos, and posture. During that time men and women practice separately. These days it’s understood that the foundation of tango is walking and not figures. If beginners turn up I work with them separately and show them the basics so that they can join the group as quickly as possible.

CARLOS: Afterwards the guided práctica begins. We watch the couples and suggest changes to posture. It’s the way it used to be taught.

ROSA: There’s no secret, it’s experience, what we’ve lived. Carlos absorbed and consolidated his tango when he was very young.

GABRIEL: There are many people who teach tango, but Carlos and Rosa live it. They don’t need to take up a certain stance: for me they are tango.

CARLOS: We’ve had very talented students who have been able to put into practise what we’ve taught them, and one champion brought others. We’ve been lucky. We don’t publicize, it’s all word of mouth, and people come, even though we’re far from the central city.

ROSA: We try to treat everyone the same and to ensure there’s a healthy group relationship. There’s a family atmosphere and the minimum possible competitiveness. The students who take part in the world championships are already under a lot of pressure and you don’t want to generate more for them.

GABRIEL: Hearing Carlos give his practical and simple explanations moves me. For example, if he wants to correct a man’s posture, he’ll say: “Otherwise, your coat will get wrinkled.” Or to explain the way the couple’s torsos should be square-on, he says: “With all due respect, but the breast of the woman must be exactly on top of the breast of the man.” These kinds of images stay in the memory so easily.

CARLOS: Tango should be learned in the most playful way possible, not so seriously. Come and have a good time, enjoy yourself!

Gabriel, your classes are also very successful. What do you teach and where?

GABRIEL: I teach on Fridays from 8.30pm to 11pm, in Villa Malcolm. I call the classes “Today’s tango”; I wanted to distance myself from tango nuevo (new tango).

My students learn fast and after two months they’re already able to get around the milonga. It shouldn’t be the case that someone takes 10 years to be able to dance a tango. My system is organic, I don’t teach sequences; the movements come naturally, like when we walk in the street. The communication between the couple comes from where the movement comes. If I change the posture of my foot, everything in my body also changes. Whether you’re talking about a closed or an open embrace, the mechanics of it are the same. Everything is based on three ways of walking: in a straight line, crossed, and to the side. From a sidestep comes giros, ochos, sacadas. That’s how it works.

CARLOS: For me Gabriel is a real character. He’s studied the human body in a much more profound and detailed way than many would; he’s taken it apart and put it back together again. There’s not a single muscle he couldn’t call by its scientific name. It’s something that never in my life would have occurred to me to do. His práctica is a relaxed place with a youthful spirit, and I think Gabriel always goes there with new ideas.

How did you come to be tango teachers?

GABRIEL: I started in 2004 with a friend. We were expected to explain the technique from the basis of movement originating in tango nuevo – torso, hips, legs – according to which the body functions as a spiral whereby the movements occur naturally. But even I wasn’t capable of it! So my path began with an intense investigation into anatomy and the mechanics of movement. Soon there were people wanting private classes, and over the course of two years I taught modern things with Cristina Cortés and with Julieta Falivene.

ROSA: When Lampazo died, we were asked if we would like to carry on [his classes]. Carlos had his printing house, and so we gave classes in Lampazo’s style just for two days a week: walking for 10 minutes then figures. But because at Sunderland we couldn’t separate the students into two distinct levels, we decided not to teach any more figures, and these days our focus continues to be on walking.

CARLOS: In 2002, we made our first overseas trip. At that time, I had become ill, and due to the country’s economic situation after the 2001/2002 crash I began to suffer panic attacks. I wasn’t stressed while we were abroad but after some rest all the stress from before came out. The doctor prescribed rest and a decision, because the printery occupied a lot of my time in those years. To make a decision between my health and money wasn’t difficult and before long I decided to devote myself to tango.

GABRIEL: I was an accountant when, in 2003, my business partner had heart surgery. I was very stressed, very worried about him and didn’t know what would happen to him. When he died, tango was the only thing that kept me anchored, and I reached a decision that my work shouldn’t be only about making money.

CARLOS: We were lucky. In 2005 my first students became world champions: Sebastián Achaval and Ximena Galliccio. And since then, every year they’ve been students of ours. In 2006, Fabian Peralta and Natacha Poberaj; in 2007, Dante Sánchez and Ines Muzzapappa; in 2008, Daniel Nacucchio and Cristina Sosa; in 2009, Hiroshi and Kyoko; and in 2010, Sebastian Giménez and María Inés Bogado.

Is it easy or difficult to teach tango?

CARLOS: I didn’t have a clue at first. One day a student asked me: “How do I change weight?” I looked at him somewhat open-mouthed. “The weight of what?” I asked him. These expressions didn’t exist before, this way of naming the movements. I answered: “The most natural way possible.” Every day I learn something through the questions of my students.

ROSA: A dancer asked me one day: “How should I breathe?” – because she’d been told she should envelope her partner in her breathing as she moved toward him. For a moment I was speechless. I told her: “Breathe like you always do.”

GABRIEL: In general people who are teaching tango aren’t always people for whom pedagogy is their forte. Sometimes they don’t put themselves in the student’s place, and this results in the student feeling stupid. But in reality, it’s the teacher who is not doing as he or she should.

CARLOS: There are teachers who aren’t really serious about teaching tango and who invent things and question truths. So for those who are serious about it there’s a lot of work in correcting this.

GABRIEL: You also need to take into account that every student has his or her own motivation for dancing. One might come because they’ve separated, another because they want to meet a man or woman, another because they really want to learn to dance.

CARLOS: Sometimes our role is difficult, almost as though we were parents to or students. They ask us very personal things and sometimes we don’t know how to answer them. Dealing with other cultures is also a challenge, although I like it because it makes my world bigger.

What are your projects, desires and dreams?

GABRIEL: That everyone in the world dances tango like they did in the 1940s; that the tango world becomes easier, without falling into falsehood, superficiality, tackiness. But our government will never support us in this; we have to do it ourselves. Aside from this: write a book; undertake again the project with Carlos and Rosa, in Argentina and in other countries; continue working with them, promoting what they convey in their teaching. I’m very grateful because they have profoundly changed and renewed my concept of tango.

CARLOS: Tango has given a huge amount to Rosa and me: great happiness and satisfaction when we were young and also when we returned to it. My greatest satisfaction is that tango is not lost. This means that I’m not going to teach it to 10, but to hundreds of students, to as many people as I can. Whoever wishes to can take advantage of that and if not, that’s fine. I give everything I know, everything I have. It’s my way of defending tango.

ROSA: We no longer have the strength or the initiative to put all of this into practise, but we’re overjoyed to accompany and support Gabriel in organizing another event that brings together the tango of yesterday and the tango of today.

GABRIEL: I want to contribute to ensuring that tango continues to exist as a collective phenomenon and a social dance.

All of you always say that the essence of tango must not be lost. Forgive me, but I’m still not sure what this famous essence of tango is for you.

CARLOS: Huh! And now, after so many hours, you come up with a difficult question that takes us right back to the beginning! For me the stories of the old days also form part of the essence of tango, the Buenos Aires of those times. And in terms of the dance, everything we’ve talked about: the music, the connection with the music and also with the partner, the sentiment and heart that each one puts into it, and each one’s willingness to be lost in their partner’s embrace for the duration of the tango. The tango as a communal experience is also part of this essence – to feel yourself part of a community of dancers and to move around a dance floor in harmony with everyone else.

GABRIEL: It’s what you feel when you see a couple dancing, what moves you. If they don’t have tango, if they’ve lost the essence of tango, you feel that something’s missing, even if you don’t know how to put it into words.

ROSA: That’s why it’s so difficult to convey it and explain it. It’s what happens inside the dancer. It’s a very intimate sentiment and something very personal. Sebastián, for example, at 18 years old, became world champion. It’s true that we taught him a lot, but beyond that, there’s something there that is him, that he puts into it, that we haven’t taught him. He walks like no one else. That’s his essence and, at the same time, the essence of tango.

But someone who dances electronic tango also feels things. Gabriel, a few years ago when you danced in the warehouse, you also felt something, didn’t you?

GABRIEL: Yes, but it was different. In Spanish, there’s a difference between “sentiment” and “sensation.” Sentiment is an emotion that comes more from inside you, and that is perhaps directed toward someone. What we were doing was different; we were venting our energy, we were happy, and enthusiastic about discovering new things – but it was more outward. It didn’t have the intimacy that these days, for me, forms the essence of tango.

How do you see the future of tango?

CARLOS: A tango that maintains its essence and that can be complemented and extended with movements that might be different but that can be danced always as tango. Tango is gentle, elegant, sensitive. If that is not lost, in the future you’ll be able to dance very well, and to dance a lovely tango. We’ve shown all of this in our project with Gabriel, the “Classic Tango & Modern Tango” event. In the same way as we have been enriched, exactly the same, we believe, the two schools mutually enrich each other. For me Gabriel represents the “modern” school – he is master of his body, of technique, he’s overflowing with energy and is creative. We represent the “old” school and we’ve added our knowledge, our experience, the measured steps and the gentleness. This is a good mix. What isn’t good, however, is the tendency to go to extremes, because that has seen tango become no longer what it is.

GABRIEL: Yes, that’s what happened in tango nuevo. There were many people who danced very well but more and more they sought the spectacular. Having the hand so low the woman was practically touching the man’s behind, the hand held in a strange posture, etc. In the 1990s, the fashion was to distinguish yourself by dancing differently. Each person wanted to create their own style, their own trait, which eventually, for a while, was imitated by others. But the whole thing became more and more absurd.

CARLOS: In tango today, the woman takes a more active role; she is more of a protagonist, which will make women happy. If in addition, tango continues to be danced with awareness and understanding of what traditional tango is, the essence will stay alive and intact. That is important, because if that doesn’t happen, tango will degenerate until there’s nothing left of it, and that would be a tremendous loss and a great sadness for the whole world.

Gabriel Glagovsky: http://gabrieltango.weebly.com/index.html

Carlos Pérez y Rosa Forte: cyrtango@yahoo.com.ar

 [1] Carlos Estévez, 1912–1995, began to dance in 1929 and contributed greatly to tango
[2] Named after the Buenos Aires neighborhood Villa Urquiza, which is referred to as the cradle of salon tango

Translation: Antoinette Wilson