my tango lesson on love, really
on my way out of the yoga today i peeked into a neighboring dance studio and quietly watched. there was a tango lesson going on. well, i thought it was tango by the shoes anyway.
one spanish speaking man was speaking… spanish, and a women was translating to english, teaching what i thought was tango. we’ll call it tango.
the teachers were in an embrace, teaching ‘how to embrace.’ they clearly knew what they were doing while the students were clearly uncomfortable though eager to learn. i was equally eager to see some sultry, spicy tango on a friday night!
… however, the reason i am not totally sure it was a tango class is because they never ‘danced.’ instead, in that moment they were being taught how to embrace one and other.
and how to breathe together.
i had no idea how important this was in tango, but i got it. the man was going on in spanish and she translated.
‘you have to breathe together. you have to get very close like this, very still and learn each others breath, learn each others body. listen for it, feel it and learn it. learn how they breath, start to understand it and begin to breathe with them.’
1. learn to breathe together.
so literally there were 4 couples, in an embrace, breathing together. their eyes were closed, arms around each other and they were so still. some slow tango (i guessed) music was playing and they just… were breathing. amazing to see right after a yoga pranayama class (practicing breathing exercises for 1 hour). i sat back and breathed with them. this was beautiful to watch and needless to say i became intrigued by these teachers.
the next lesson was about axis. the students were then to move together. once they became familiar with each others breathing it was time to move. so they began to move. the teachers brought up the next point:
2. ‘stay on your own axis. don’t fall or merge into your partners. stay on your own axis and move together.’ amazing. interdependence.
next. the male teacher was watching and correcting a few students. he turned down the music, interrupted and was then translated.
3. ‘when you make a mistake let it go. forget about that move and move into another one. don’t think about it anymore.’
and finally, as if i hadn’t realized tango was truly my life lesson on love (and other things) for the day, lesson four comes along.
some students were making more mistakes, mostly men due to the nature of the dance (leader/follower). this time the woman teacher stepped in.
4. ‘move from your whole body. some of you men are leading and moving from just your shoulders, your upper body. you have to breathe, move and lead with your entire body so that your partner can trust you, understand you, respect your lead.’