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March 7, 2011



With the closing of Maipu 444 in Buenos Aires as a tang venue (the building was sold apparently), various milongas held weekly in that relatively small dance floor on the second floor probably had to scramble for alternatives in the last couple of months. Even some of my friends in Singapore who have been to this iconic location have lamented, as it were, an end of an era. For the detailed comings-and-goings of milongas once held at Maipu 444, please see Sallycat’s excellent update (accurate as of February 2011).

Relocation of Cachirulo – milonga for the ultra-traditionalists – to Club Villa Malcolm, better known for its nuevo associations, was a surprise to me initially. The following is a video of the inauguration that took place a couple of days ago on 5th March).

As can be seen, this clip really bears out what I have already known: a different organiser, with his/her preferences in seating arrangement, lighting and of course choice of DJs/music (not so apparent from such a short clip) can completely transform the same venue. Contrast this with the usual clips and photos one sees of Villa Malcolm. Perhaps, with the change in location and a larger dance floor, I felt the atmosphere was a little more relaxed than what I remembered on Saturday nights. Hopefully, too, in time, the same milonga can attract an even larger group of quality dancers that Cachirulo has been known for, and not the opposite as a result of the relocation.

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  1. Mar 8 2011

    The organizer sets the tone of each milonga. Hector doesn’t have to worry about nuevo dancers showing up on Saturday. They know he would ask them to leave at the first sight of a boleo.

    Club Villa Malcolm has a history of hosting orchestras for tango. Most think of it as a nuevo venue, but I attended a traditional milonga there in 1998.

    The crazy drummer is Nestor Astarita who performs around town with his jazz group. As a dancer, he never misses the beat.

    It appears that Chan Park has assumed the job of cameraman of Cachirulo (a lunfardo term that means “silly person”).

    • Mar 8 2011

      Hi Jan,

      Thanks for the additional comments!

  2. Mar 12 2011

    By the way, Plaza Bohemia (which opened September 5, 2004) isn’t the only venue to close in the last few months. Bien Porteno and Rivadavia Club were added to the list. We can always count on sudden closures. The city closed Rivadavia Club.

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