Tango vals is something that I have always enjoyed, since the beginning of my tango journey.
Here is a clip of “some old-timers” (well, they are Osvaldo and Coca who incidentally are the winners of Tango Salon category in the Tango championship in 2004) dancing to a Canaro vals, showing many of the typical qualities of milongueros in Buenos Aires. As a matter of fact, I can confirm that they dance with just with as much zest and playfulness as in this demonstration in a regular milonga, as seen in the wee hours of the morning at Gricel. Age may have slowed some of the milongueros down, but it certainly has not dulled their playful spirits or creativity. In fact, I can definitely pick out hints of the sacadas and deft footwork that are part of the repertoire from the likes of Julio Balmaceda or Javier Rodriguez… 😆
Don’t know about your neck of woods, but visiting teachers will generally insist on dancing with a good posture during their classes. However, from browsing clips on YouTube of well-known (usually very old) milongueros and teachers, what I saw during my trip to Buenos Aires, and perhaps the little streak of rebelliousness in me(!?), sometimes I really wonder what’s all the fuss about having a good posture??
I mean, it is not difficult to find clips of the so-called maestros dancing with an apparently imperfect posture and yet able to move musically and perhaps with a dash of showiness. What’s the catch? Why is it that “they” are allowed while “we” (the “uninitiated”) are barred from copying their examples to the dot!? I mean, if these famous dancers can manage to dance well with slouched backs, bent heads, etc., why can’t I do the same… 🙂
Actually, despite the slightly tongue-in-cheek introduction, my conclusion from all this is that good posture is not just for aesthetics but serves important functional purposes. For me at least, the fundamental principle is simply:
Provided that you do not disturb your partner’s axis or balance, slight deviations from the ideal posture are not only permissible but actively encouraged.
I believe that, just as we should walk with our unique personality, so we should dance with as few constraints as possible, or else we will all become mere robots on the dance floor – stiff and straight, able to move to the rhythm of the music precisely, but nothing more.