President’s Message – September 2018

I have always wanted to marry my two loves together:  Dance and Art.  For our September meeting I invited my Argentine Tango friends to come and perform for UWS.  This is a photo op, or if you are a fast sketcher, a drawing and or painting opportunity.

I feel that performing arts and visual arts have all the same elements.  So putting the two together is very exciting. Here is such a list of art elements and how I see them as they pertain to Argentine tango.

Line: As you will see, tango in particular has beautiful lines.

Shape: In tango there is the gancho, boleo,  secada, barrida, colgada, ocho, parada and volcada, to name a few.

Color:  The costumes in dance are works of art in their own right:  Colorful, flowing,


Balance:  One of the critical skills of a good dancer is their ability to turn on one foot and perform other moves without relying upon their partner for support.

Rhythm:  Well, if you can’t keep rhythm with the music, dancing may not be for you!

Space:  Correct spacing is critical.  Too close to your partner or another couple and you bump into each other.  Too far from your partner and you lose connection.

Variety:  Nobody wants to see or even dance the same moves all night.  Followers and audiences enjoy being surprised

Form:  Posture is critical.  Lunges must have only one leg bent or the dancer looks like they are squatting.  Toes should point to elongate the legs.

Unity and Harmony: The couple needs to move together as one unit.

Contrast:   Variety of speed, intensity, and height improve the dance quality.

Area of interest:  Both partners need to look at and have their upper bodies “flashlight” toward each other, not only for appearances, but to keep a connection with one another in order to dance in unity.

As Anne of Green Gables might say, both art and dance are very “romantical”. I hope this experiment goes well and that both dancers and artists have a great experience!



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