While in Buenos Aires, we witnessed many Tango teachers from abroad taking lessons. We even saw a professional stage dancer and teacher, who is the son of a prominent figure in the history of Tango in Buenos Aires, take lessons from another professional dancer (in the company of us “normal” dancers). And this is the way it should be! Too many Tango dancers stop taking lessons too early in their Tango education. More importantly, there are Tango teachers who have even decided they don’t need or want to learn anymore.
In most careers you’ll hear about the importance of learning new skills and/or keeping your existing ones up-to-date. Why would this be any different in Tango?
“The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as long as we live.”
– Mortimer Adler
Don’t get us wrong, we are not insulting people’s desire to Tango in Buenos Aires. We are not insulting the fact that two weeks is the longest amount of time one can manage to spend here. However…
There are exceptions, but what Tango dancer believes that coming here for two or three weeks is going to further their knowledge of the dance (especially if this is their first time here)? Two to three weeks of dancing at milongas, and taking group lessons and private lessons cannot even begin to scratch the surface of what Tango is here. Although, so many people come here with no intention of even trying to learn a thing. They are blissfully happy to continue their North American version of tango – completely free of the culture that makes up this dance.
We have been here two months now. It took us a full month just to figure out which milongas and classes we enjoy and this past month has only begun to alter (although quite dramatically) our Tango. Even after having this wonderful opportunity to spend eight months here, we don’t believe we would ever return for anything less than four weeks. We simply don’t see the point. Then again, we are travellers-at-heart and we are not very big fans of any 2-week holidays.