Buenos Aires Tango: viva el tango! - The Traveller


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Buenos Aires Tango: viva el tango!

Tango becomes fashionable on the banks of the Rio de la Plata. February 23 to March 4, the ninth edition of the festival will present Tango Buenos Aires young performers who breathe new life to this music highly Argentina. The opportunity to wander in Buenos Aires and smell the special atmosphere of the milongas, the dancing that expresses again and again the culture of the tango. More than a dance, an art of living authentically porteño. Indulge ...

The tango is not dead

The tango is not dead. This "sad thought that is danced" - according to the definition of beautiful Argentine poet Enrique Discepolo - also described as "a vertical expression of horizontal desire", has a new life on the banks of the River Plate, where she emerged. Enthusiasts from around the world as a pilgrimage sniff the air clubs tango, milongas, where time seems to stand still. The sound of the bandoneon, listening to the voice of Carlos Gardel, or enjoying the sensual elegance of tangueros, they may meditate on the singular destiny of the dance origins sulfur.

We may have forgotten, but the tango was born in the late nineteenth century in the suburbs near the port, among immigrants: single men from around the world dancing, often together, in brothels or disreputable bars. As the samba in Brazil, tango is a dance coming of mixed people. It has long been despised by the local bourgeoisie before becoming the emblem and pride of the country. Ironically ...

But make no mistake about it. All Argentines do not dance the tango, far from it. Youth porteña frequent bars and clubs of trendy Palermo rather than the dance halls of San Telmo, the historic cradle of tango. The 30-45 years are aware of it in their eyes, this dance is that of their parents. Yet over the past ten years, Buenos Aires is experiencing a new wave of tango. A Academia Nacional del Tango was born, while new bands are inspired to get married to jazz or electronic music. The worldwide success of the Franco-Argentine Gotan Project reflects this new craze. Buenos Aires radio even has a fully dedicated to the tango (the 2x4). And it's less common to see young people from twenty years to dance in the milongas where they rub their grandparents.

Buenos Aires Tango Festival

The programming of the 9th International Festival Buenos Aires Tango, which runs from February 23 to March 4, demonstrates the renewed vitality of this genre. Many young performers mixing tango with rock, jazz or electronic music, are invited to perform on stage (Teatro Sarmiento, Teatro Alvear, Centro Cultural Gardel ...) and in participating in the festival milongas. A tribute will also be made to the tango of the "other side", that is to say to performers and composers from Montevideo, Uruguay. Finally, a component of the programming will be devoted to Argentine interpreters living in Europe as Jerez Le Cam, Ariel Prat, group or pianist Matthew Beltango Cepitelli.

Besides the concerts, Buenos Aires Tango offers several activities of daily classes open to all, a fair variety of products (CDs, accessories, shoes ...), the guided tours in the footsteps of tango (visit the neighborhoods of San Telmo , La Boca, Retiro ...), a competition for professionals and, above all, open-air milonga with orchestras Cerda Negra, Sans Souci and Sexteto Mayor, which will bring together thousands of people.

After the festival, dance halls and cabarets

But in Buenos Aires, it is especially present at the live tango, either by going into a tavern or in a ballroom. There's something for everyone: tango contest with rhinestones and frilly, tango salon in the European elegance and rigid compulsory figures, tango show (Fantasia) to virtuoso dancers, and finally the tango milonguero, in which partners dance glued to each other the sound of the bandoneon in the quaint rooms, where all is sensuality, elegance and timelessness.

Choose the type bars with cabaret milonga for tourists: they offer not good performances, but they may lack some authenticity. Located in San Telmo, the Bar Sur (which served as the film Happy Together by Wong Kar-Wai) has good performances in an atmosphere more intimate and a very typical. But do not forget to go to a real ballroom, even if we can not dance the tango: the show is worth seeing.

Do not miss legendary places like the beautiful tea-dancing Confiteria Ideal or some milongas most confidential of San Telmo as Torquato Tasso. Just ask the Porteños (inhabitants of Buenos Aires) to give you their best addresses. In these more intimate places, with the inimitable atmosphere, one discovers that the tango is a way of life and social practice. Dress, set of looks, dance moves, everything is codified and it is fascinating to watch the Argentines, young and old enjoy themselves in astonishing alchemy of passion and restraint.

For aficionados, know that there are no fewer than nine museums dedicated to the tango in Buenos Aires. A visit to the house of Carlos Gardel is required: a native of Toulouse, this great performer has become a national monument in Argentina. Go and pay him homage. Finally, stroll through the streets of San Telmo, the old bohemian neighborhood in Buenos Aires where the tango had its golden age. The charming Plaza Dorrego, the dancers are beautiful tango demonstrations on Sunday afternoon. If you are lucky enough to find a place on the terrace of a bar (or better, the balcony), the show is well worth it. Tourism no doubt, but what do you want, the charm works ...

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