Friday, June 3, 2016

Adding A Nuevo Flavor To Your Dance (Intermediate)

Song: Beautiful Tango by Hindi Zahra
Instructors: Homer & Cristina Ladas
England International Tango Festival
May 28, 2016, Ardingly College, England

Our work began with the most subtle wraps in tango, which Maestros have dubbed “The Ismael Wrap”.

This wrap is a nice surprise for the Follower.

We began standing with split weight facing forward. We then pivoted forward and then the other way to feel what this felt like to still be at split weight while pivoting.

In partnership, we walked together, and the Leader led the Follower to do a right leg wrap of the Leader’s right leg on her left foot back step.  He did this by settling on his left, then step past the Follower’s forward leg, in a deep step so that his right foot heel is behind the Follower’s right foot heel, then twisting his body to the open side of the embrace.

Note here that his left leg is free to come up, and he twists the other way to lead the Follower to wrap that leg with her same right wrapping leg.

The Follower feels the presence of the Leader’s left leg. The Leader slowly settles the Follower on her left foot.  She feels his twist, which is the invitation to wrap, of first the Leader’s left leg, and then he changes weight so that his left leg is free.  He then lifts this free left leg and invites the Follower to wrap it with her same right leg.

Then he can invite her to wrap again his original left leg (so do 3 wraps in a row).

The lead is the Leader squeezing his thighs together.

The lead for the third wrap is the Leader bringing the Follower’s right foot back with  his left leg.

The Follower should emulate a tiger in being very grounded when doing these wraps.

In the first wrap, the Follower will feel the Leader’s lead with his spine and rotation in it and he will lift his knee.

The second wrap is done with the Leader’s joint manipulation and surrounding the Follower’s thigh, so she wraps.

Then he sends the Follower’s leg back immediately back out to the third wrap as he steps back down and slightly back.

The Leader squeezes the Follower’s thigh from the first to second wrap.

The Follower’s goal is to Follow the articulation of the Leader’s leg.

If these wraps are easy, try the other side.

The exit after the Leader steps down and back with his left foot is a left foot forward step (so his left foot stepping down is a touch step, not a complete weight change step as he will step forward with that same left foot afterwards – so his weight is on his right foot the whole time).

Part B
Returning to the 1st idea of the split-weight pivot.

The Leader gets into the cross system way of walking in close embrace by doing a sneak attack weight change, then Leader walks inside and around the Follower starting with his right foot forward to Follower’s right foot back step, then transitioning into an open embrace as he does a left foot cowboy side step around the left foot of the Follower.

Here the Leader stops the Follower just before the middle of her weight change as he cowboy side steps around her, and she pivots on her right foot into her left leg wrap as she transfers the weight.

The Leader is in Captain Morgan stance with his left, whereby his heel is off the ground and his knee can swing both ways, in and out. 

The Follower’s outside wraps with her left leg around the Leader’s right leg on his left foot side step around the Follower as he transfers her weight and rotates his chest and does the Captain Morgan stance of his right leg.

There are two exits from this wrap, which is basically a Follower’s forward boleo:
     (1) Follower collects.
     (2) Follower’s knee goes up and then slides back down so that feet collect. 

In either exit, the Follower needs to commit to it, and she needs to collect with either exit.

We then had a class quiz followed by Maestros’ demo to Hindi Zahra’s Beautiful Tango.

Notes courtesy of Anne at

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