Solo Blues Dance Competition…

•Tuesday, 9 February 2016 • Leave a Comment

Not to be missed! The Solo Blues Fun Dance Competition this Friday evening, 12 February, at The 2016 UK Blues & Smooth Dance Championships at Tristan Dance Studios, Huddersfield, HD4 7BQ.

For more information email: info@curlwurlyevents.com

•Monday, 8 February 2016 • Leave a Comment

A partnership of Juke Joint Events and CurlyWurly Events, The 2016 UK Blues & Smooth
Dance Championships will be held from 12-14 February 2016 at Tristan Dance Studios, Huddersfield, HD4 7BQ.

This is your opportunity to dance and compete with dancers from all over the UK. There are 11 Competitions to suit all levels and three freestyle evenings with top UK blues dance DJs.

This year’s judges are Andy McGregor, Velody, Nath ‘StokeBloke’ & Essie Jo, Frank ‘Blueshoes’ & Faye, Asif Malik, and Nigel & Nina.

DJs: Chris Uren, CurlyWurly Dave, Pete Shilito and John Firth.

Organised by Lisa CurlyWurly Graydon and Chris Uren for your dance delectation.

I’ll be there. For more information email: info@curlwurlyevents.com

Learning to Dance

•Wednesday, 13 January 2016 • Leave a Comment

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Some Thoughts from Chicho Frumboli

•Monday, 19 October 2015 • 1 Comment

Back in August Chicho Frumboli posted a fascinating statement on his Facebook page. It’s certainly food for thought.

Note: Facebook autotranslates the original Spanish text, which results in a somewhat garbled, clumsy version. I’ve taken the liberty of tidying this up somewhat (with the occasional reference to a Spanish dictionary); any errors are, of course, mine. (And if you do spot any, do let me know!)

Just a thought…
Buenos Aires always gives me mixed feelings… Sometimes it’s pure love, at other times I hate it…

Perhaps that’s because it’s so important to me.

It seems that after so many years of dancing and teaching, tango dancers of my generation are becoming “milongueros nuevos”. 🙂

My thoughts and feelings are, how much I miss the milonga… how I miss Almagro, the Parakultural Centre in Chacabuco [centre of Buenos Aires underground culture in 1980s-early 1990s, now home of Salon Canning], Arlequines, La Viru in its Golden Age.

This was a time when aesthetics weren’t so important.. a time when we were learning to dance, and we told ourselves that true authenticity lay in discovering our own dance.

Then we learned to dance through our own efforts, our only teachers being a mirror and our own judgment.

Then it was creativity, study and exploration which kept our motivation alive.

I believe that the rise of fashions in tango was inevitable.

There are countless “maestros” and a ridiculous number of “professionals”, which is a double-edged sword.

It is good because in the end there are more people who can dance tango, and this clearly that it is not going to disappear. But on the other hand, quality and quantity don’t often go together.

Today I regret that there was never an academy that brought together, at least in terms of the basic concepts, the key techniques, instead of this focus on the visual aesthetics associated with a particular style.

Tango is at a gateway. We can pass through it and discover something really great… but only if we want to.

It’s difficult to understand why we have this “dance factory” for competitions.

What happened to tango…? To dancing? Having fun… seduction… playfulness… creativity…?

That’s what I learned, and still learn by watching the great dancers, whatever their style.

Maybe it’s because I’ve been in tango for so long that this is such an important part of me… wanting a utopia in which tango is as true as it’s always been.

Today belonging seems to be the important thing… If everyone dances in the same way they feel safe and important. To be “someone”, whether they call themselves dancers or teachers, puts them in a privileged position. That’s wrong.

I see it a lot in those who dress up as tangueros, Argentines and foreigners. It’s funny… or sad, depending on how you look at it.

Hence my love and my hatred.

Because I see that, after more than 20 years of tango, it is getting more difficult every day to teach. Or to dance.

Teaching people to dance… phew! The struggle gets more desperate every day.

So here are my questions:

Why teach styles? Because this limits our bodies, arms, backs, feet and necks. Why is it necessary to dress up as a “tango professional”? Why the same suits, the same dresses, the same make-up? Why teach musicality?

Why do they speak so much bullshit?

Why aren’t they really teaching people to dance?

I mean to truly dance… With all the possibilities of the dance… form, techniques, with all the freedom our dance has.

Don’t be cardboard cut-outs, guys. It’s very cold and empty.

You won’t find tango by chasing a prize, or money, or fame.

The Tango is within us… as it’s always been.

Let’s go on pushing forward. This is just beginning.

Wild 2: Wings

•Thursday, 2 April 2015 • Leave a Comment

Letters For Friends

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Original photograph taken in St Ives, 31 December 2014.

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Why Men Won’t Dance…

•Friday, 13 February 2015 • 3 Comments

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An interesting article by Nikolas Lloyd, clearly a dancer himself. A few quotes:

To dance well, one needs good health, poise, co-ordination, stamina, strength, athleticism, rhythm, balance, suppleness, speed, an ability to predict and react to the movements of others (especially for partnered dancing), and style...

One lady… told me that her mother had forbidden her to marry a good dancer, because such a man would “be trouble”...

It is well recognised that women are more choosy about sexual partners. Natural selection has armed women with dance to improve their powers of choice. Natural selection has also equipped men with a useful fear of this weapon. That’s why men won’t dance.

But do read the whole article here.

Heart, Have No Pity…

•Wednesday, 13 August 2014 • Leave a Comment

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Heart, have no pity on this house of bone:
Shake it with dancing, break it down with joy.
No man holds mortgage on it; it is your own;
To give, to sell at auction, to destroy.
When you are blind to moonlight on the bed,
When you are deaf to gravel on the pane,
Shall quavering caution from this house instead
Cluck forth at summer mischief in the lane?
All that delightful youth forbears to spend
Molestful age inherits, and the ground
Will have us; therefore, while we’re young, my friend —
The Latin’s vulgar, but the advice is sound.
Youth, have no pity; leave no farthing here
For age to invest in compromise and fear.

Edna St. Vincent Millay — Sonnet 29 from Fatal Interview.

Photograph taken at El Quinto, March 2013.

 
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