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January 21, 2003


Not too long ago, was chatting to someone who had been to Taipei recently and heard some interesting information about the Tango community in Taiwan. As a result, decided to visit Tango Taiwan’s website and was quite impressed. Seems they are doing well and good luck to them!

This begs the question, what are they doing that we are not doing in Singapore, considering – though admittedly, I was not part of the ‘founders’ – we have been around for about the same length of time?

It seems, after 3 years, and coming up to the fourth year, we still have some persistent problems.

  1. Not enough new blood,
  2. Progress of leaders is slow,
  3. The lack of suitable venues.

The first is perhaps largely out of our control since we are not a formal organisation and do not have the resources to actively market our dance!? The third problem has, well, somewhat lessened due to emergence of venues in the past 6 months such as the Porridge Club and the newly opened Xenbar.

The second can be partly explained because there are not many good role models the leaders can aspire towards. However, this again raises the point of need to have good practicas. A good practica and the right attitudes, where people are willing to put in some efforts and practice right techniques!

How can we bring about this culture of having to work on the dance? Need TV sets for watching videos of past workshops? Start with ‘compulsory’ walking? I am a bit wary in regimentalising too much as this 1) takes the fun out of the dance 2) can scare away people who are in Tango because of the social nature of our small group. At the same time, I see no way of bringing up the general standard of dancers, and especially the leaders, in Singapore.

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