Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Tango One Liners :: #0001

Heather & Lee
Photo by Alex.Tango.Fuego

For followers, there is really nothing to remember in tango. This is an acknowledged gross oversimplification.

But, there are three primary things to remember, with every fiber of your being, remember without thinking, ingrained in your heart and soul...

Numero Uno :: Commit
As in commit to one foot and only one foot at a time...commit to 100% of your weight being on that one foot...unless you feel a lead to do otherwise...

Numero Dos :: Collect
Collect your now free, relaxed foot/leg, right up next to the active foot, the one carrying your weight, the one 'working'...think in terms of 'ready relaxation' and/or 'controlled flaccidity' with the free leg...but don't think...

(there are all kinds of stylistic things with regard to collecting, but for brevity, I won't go into...)

Numero Tres :: Wait
Wait for the lead. Don't anticipate. Don't think. Feel the music. Feel the lead. Listen to the music. Listen to the lead. Wait. Wait for the lead.

Numero Cuatro :: Surrender
The 'surrender' is a difficult one to verbalize. It's not submission, it's permission. Give me permission to control your axis in space and time. By your leave, allow me to control the placement of your feet on the dance floor. Surrender yourself to me to be led. Give yourself to me. Trust in me that I will protect you on the dance floor. Trust in me that I will not lead you beyond your experience.

This was more than three things and more than one line, but you get the point - short and sweet - and hopefully helpful to both followers and leaders who are learning - or have forgotten.

Make this your new mantra - Surrender :: Commit :: Collect :: Wait

Plus, I figger I'd better write ~something~ about tango once in a while.


ModernTanguera said...

Can I revise? Because I think that the first two are both lead-dependent, in that I commit all of my weight to one foot and collect when asked to do so (but that think of instances when that isn't the leader's intention!). I would condense those into: Commit. As in commit wholeheartedly to whatever lead you feel.

(I believe that collecting is important, but it doesn't seem to fit into the sorts of things you want followers to remember. I would tell followers to remember to collect in the same breath as telling them to maintain a strong core and relaxed upper body, or to roll through the foot as you step on it, things like that.)

I really like the ideas behind this post.

Red Shoes said...

I sure like the characterization of surrendering to the lead as "permission, not submission". Nicely done.

Anonymous said...

Nice and concise, Alex. Great post.