Tango Argentino > How to find other female dance partners at a milonga as a seperate male beginner?

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by Peter78, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. itwillhappen

    itwillhappen Active Member

    Totally wrong. Okay, some kind of "academic characteristics" might be helpful. And a frequent-flyer-status is by far more than needed!
    Finally you have only to enter a milonga and prove to be a pleasant dancer, however.

  2. JTh

    JTh Member

    Here is the link...http://www.dance-forums.com/threads...dance”-–christmas-edition.47201/#post-1096714
    Long post..but what stands out is :
    Equivalent to
    : The perfect leader!

    The perfect leader is the one who has good dance skills and a nice personality.
    One who is comfortable enough to chat, with confidence and who actually cares to connect with the other person.
    Take your time, enjoy every second of the milonga either by chatting or by dancing!
    When the time comes to dance, make sure you are very clear with what you want…....
    Keep it simple, clear and straight forward especially while dancing with someone for the first time, they will appreciate it!
    I can tell you that despite me being fairly new, and not great skills technically (but good enough at this stage).... I have tried to exhibit the above in class and practica sessions and have been met with good success... Even with far more experienced followers. Having the above also gives me the 'bullets in my gun' to approach way more advanced followers to dance- to answer your question more directly.
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2017
  3. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Far wrong, I've been at various milongas all over europe as a beginner, intermediate, or as advanced dancer. I always experienced a worm welcome and felt at home at once.

    Sorry, Peter, you cannot speed it up for neurological reasons. Second, you attend classes or lessons not for learning steps in the first place, but for social reasons. Finally, as far as you can afford it, take privates with a teacher who has a background in ballet. She will give you specific advice on posture, balance, dynamics, and so on.
  4. pascal

    pascal Active Member

    The learning for the leader is already quite a long process. If you feel that you and your partner are in the beginner class like athletes in a crowd of retired people with their crutches and wheelchairs, then yes, ask the teacher if you can also attend (or switch to) the intermediate one. Some teachers will even suggest that you do that, even before you ask.

    Still, while I commonly saw girls becoming junior teachers in less than one year, I still have to see leaders who needed less than one year and an half to be more or less ok.
  5. Tango Distance

    Tango Distance Active Member

    In my little area, the highly-selective, only-dance-with-experts ladies are young.
  6. Reuven Thetanguero

    Reuven Thetanguero Active Member

    We travel a lot internationally. I can attest that the Tangueros in foreign countries, contrary to your assertion, are very friendly and open to dancing with foreigners. For them it's a curiosity to dance with an American and we have maid many international friends that way. We danced in Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Colombia and in Europe in Amsterdam, Paris, Berlin, Warsaw, Budapest and Prague.
    itwillhappen, sixela and opendoor like this.
  7. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    there are many things that you as a leader can learn while watching other at the dancefloor:
    - floorcraft of others (helpful while you are in the ronda ;) )
    - musicality of advanced dancers or intermediate
    - what is style for a certain follower

    That comes to my mind, there are more to write about what to do while not dancing ;)
    opendoor likes this.
  8. TomTango

    TomTango Active Member

    I'm a leader who started dancing at the same time as my girlfriend and we danced in a scene where we were the youngest dancers. So it sounds like our starts are similar. I was able to progress at the same speed as her, if not faster. Here's what I contribute it to:
    • You have a huge advantage in that you have a dance partner. Having a person you can readily share ideas with, practice, try out new things, is something most dancers don't have. If you take advantage of this, both of you will progress more quickly than the typical beginner.
    • Pure volume. Dance as much as you can as often as you can. Don't let only classes dominate. True, your partner can get dances more readily as a young follow. However, most places have more follows than leads, which means you can often get dances with partners a bit above your own skill level. Ask as many people as you can, don't fear rejection, and don't be afraid to ask those you consider more advanced.
    • Watch performance videos on youtube. Watching advanced dancers interpret tango music will accelerate your own musicality. When I started, I watched a lot of videos to learn moves, which had the side effect of getting me to hear tango music like a dancer. I would watch at least 2 or 3 videos a day, maybe 5-8 times each. True, building up the muscles in your legs and core is hard to rush, building up the nervous system and muscle memory is hard to rush, but I believe becoming a musical dancer is something that can be greatly accelerated through exposure. One caveat: be sure to recognize the difference between performance dancing and social dancing. A lot of things done while performing aren't safe, good, or even possible when on a crowded floor.
    Hope this helps!
  9. sixela

    sixela Well-Known Member

    You will (once you develop some kind of proficiency). If you're good enough, you'll find it easier to dance abroad, actually (there is a "shiny new plaything honeymoon" ;-) ).

    Some milongas are also more friendly than others in a given city. Try to ask someone you know (even if only on a forum like this) for hints. If you plan a trip to Brussels, Ghent or Antwerp drop me a PM.

    Work hard. Ask your partner to compare you mercilessly to the better leaders she dances with and use her to your advantage. She may be able to describe to you how it feels to dance with them and with a bit of luck identify some key differences; experiment and see if the experiments bear fruit. Treat 'issues' like puzzles that you have to solve.

    If you're really motivated: take private lessons. But with someone whose dancing _and_ style of leading (and dancing to the music) you like, not just anybody.
    itwillhappen likes this.
  10. sixela

    sixela Well-Known Member

    If you have a caustic and abrasive personality like me, you'll just have to dance better to compensate [sardonic laughter].

    Seriously, though, there's a ground of truth in it: I really cannot enjoy dances with people I can't stand (even if they are very good dancers), so it's best to try not to be a jerk (as much as possible, and there are always going to be people you rub the wrong way --at least in my case).

    But liking or disliking people is not something you should set in stone: some people may be aloof and turn out to be a lot easier to like once you know them (and dancing a few good tandas will certainly break the ice).
  11. sixela

    sixela Well-Known Member

    I forgot one thing: as a leader, don't be a hazard on the dance floor. Ladies will look after each other and try to cull the herd of leaders from those specimens who're likely to cause fatalities. Even if you're the bees knees, I can guarantee that you won't get dances with many of the good followers if you're a wrecking ball. Be considerate _to other dancers_ as well, and not just because you might one day want to dance with some of them.
  12. itwillhappen

    itwillhappen Active Member

    Possible, of course, but why should someone do such things at a milonga?
    That's a party - I would suggest to enjoy the ladies, the drinks and the music while not dancing.
  13. sixela

    sixela Well-Known Member

    But how better to enjoy the music than seeing good dancers dance to it, each telling a different story about what they see in it? You'll be drunk on arcane knowledge just by breathing it all in...I don't think Mladenac was suggesting taking notes ("section 1: floorcraft, paragraph 3: navigating corners").
  14. cornutt

    cornutt Well-Known Member

    The day that I'm welcomed by worms, I don't think I'll be dancing anymore. :D
    opendoor and itwillhappen like this.
  15. Peter78

    Peter78 New Member

    Thanks for all the usable input here. I took my mental notes out of all the different opinions and will try to adapt accordingly. I think, I can definitely start to work with that.
  16. itwillhappen

    itwillhappen Active Member

    How does that fit together - follows or or leads don't like it to practice with a partner?
  17. JTh

    JTh Member

    I have heard similar.. That followers attain a level of proficiency quicker than the leads.
    Whatever the case, I agree with another post above that thr poster is lucky to have a ready-made (for lack of a better term) dance partner to practice.
    I remember when I started recently, I went cold turkey -knew no one, didn't even know anything about the dance studio, and nothing at all about the dance. I wish I had a running mate.. But fortunately I had the brains and work ethic to make it quite enjoyable and successful till date.
  18. TomTango

    TomTango Active Member

    I'm sure every community is different, but in my experience it's not easy to find a dance partner of similar skill level. Most people I know get all their practicing done solo or at a practica with whoever wants to practice at the moment. But not many people devoted to spending a lot of time improving alongside one person in particular.
  19. JTh

    JTh Member

    Similar for me.
    I can only name one other that I feel is at my skill level..out of many including thosr at practica.
    I wish we could be more exclusive.. We both would progress our skills quicker...but instructors want rotation of partners. I understand the benefits of that.. But I think if you have found someone you connect with, your progression will be quicker that way.
  20. itwillhappen

    itwillhappen Active Member

    We do not change the couples often in classes here. And normally we make an appointment for a practica and practice that time together.
    But okay, that's not like a partner for competition ballroom dancing, for efficiency-oriented training.
    And I have an agreement with my SO not to do that on a technical level. We enjoy our dancing and let workshop teacher do the review.

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