The San Diego Tango scene in many ways parallels the salsa scene. Both types of dances are experiencing a resurgence in interest from the community and both have a growing presence here in San Diego. Nothing demonstrates this better in the Tango scene than the emergence of new Tango talent in the area such as Krista Ann.
Krista has extensively studied the art of Argentine Tango in Italy, Buenos Aires, Detroit, Chicago, Miami, & New York City under many tango greats such as Juan Carlos Copes, Jorge Firpo, Gustavo Naveira & Giselle Anne, Guillimina Quiqua & Lori Burton of Argentine Tango Detroit. Currently Teaching in San Diego and North County she embraces all styles of Argentine Tango. She recently joined as an Assistant Organizer for the San Diego Salsa and Latin Dancing Meetup Group and will be hosting Tango events here in San Diego. The article below is a guest piece written by her that talks a little bit about the condition of Tango dancing in San Diego today. Enjoy!
Reflections on the San Diego Argentine Tango Dance Scene By Guest Writer Krista Ann
“There’s a difference between learning the steps and learning how to dance. Dancing already exists in you, it’s in your heart beat and the way you hear the music. My job is to help you translate it into the words of dance”.
Argentine Tango is a dance of many different styles and cultural attributes. Having formed during a time of pilgrimage to South America, Tango is a dance reflectant of many cultures including African, European, Latin, and Native American. Tango is the creation of an artistic community that helped in bridging cultural divides.
Over time Tangueros have lost this community. In attempting to preserve the authentic tango, dancers have divided into many different separatist groups that believe in one style; Milonguro, Salon, Nuevo, Neo… No longer embracing the energy that is Tango.
San Diego is a place of pilgrimage and is the cultural fusion of many different heritages.
Just as tango once built bridges between different groups of people, San Diego now does for Tango.
San Diego’s Tango scene is starting to merge the tango divides. From the traditional Milonguro to the more the modern Nuevo Tanguero, we welcome you.
With a variety of great instructors and warm Milongas, San Diego is an amazing place to explore Argentine Tango. The dancers are friendly and share a genuine love for the dance.
Argentine Tango is a liberal dance that exists in the hearts of the dancers.
With the smell of the ocean air and music of all kinds, this is the place to develop our very own, Argentine Tango.
Those new to salsa and Latin dancing in general sometimes find it challenging to “find the beat” when dancing. One creative salsa dancer created a “Salsa Beat Machine” as an answer to that challenge.
The Salsa Beat Machine is a free online Salsa and Merengue metronome. The idea behind it is to use it as as tool to improve your dance timing and feeling of the rhythm. Different patterns composing Salsa Music are broken down for you using an intuitive mixer-like interface. An online visualizer tab let’s you match what you hear in the music with the instrument that is currently playing. Here is a short video that explains how it works:
Here is some info direct from Uri Shaked, the creator, about his inspiration for the tool:
“I’ve been dancing Salsa for around 4 years, and today Salsa plays a major role in my life.
When I began dancing, I struggled with the rhythm of the music a lot, and it took me more than a year to get it right. I remember my friends telling me that I was off-beat, dancing on the “2” or “3”, but as I couldn’t hear any “numbers” in the music I had no idea what they were talking about and was really frustrated. Fortunately, following an advice from a close friend, I began listening to a lot of Salsa music. Without any special guidance, it took the change several months to happen, but I gradually progressed until I reached a point I could dance in time with the music.
Since then, I became a Salsa instructor myself, teaching dance and musicality to others, and also began playing salsa gigs on the piano, clave sticks, conga drums and timbales set. Learning how to feel the rhythm and to dance to the beat wasn’t an easy journey, but I am happy I did not give up. This gave me the drive to explore the music and its structure, to listen to individual instruments, find patterns, and ultimately create the tool known today as the Salsa Beat Machine.”
Time to visit your local US post office if you are a Latin music lover! The new 2011 Latin Music Legends US Stamp collection features Celia Cruz, Carlos Gardel, Carmen Miranda, Selena and Tito Puente in close up portrait shots. The music styles represented include Tejano, Argentine Tango, Samba, Latin Jazz, and Salsa.