Normally I post videos to watch, often with my commentary, that are exemplary of Tango Salon style, and in particular in the style of "Rose Vine Tango" - that is, coming from the Villa Urquiza tradition.
Today, since Michael asks in "Ask Helaine" about whether five figures he lists are part of Milonguero Style, which is very different from Tango Salon, I've made a short playlist of two non-professional but excellent milongueros whom I admire very much and with whom I have danced and "gone to heaven".
In the first two videos in the playlist below, we'll see Osvaldo Centeno "El Oso" (The Bear), performing in 2008 at his favorite milonga in Buenos Aires, "El Beso". He's dancing in both with the well-known teacher of milonguero style, Ana Maria Schapira. Osvaldo is not famous outside of Buenos Aires, but he's been dancing tango for 50 years and is highly esteemed by his peers. Perhaps you can see why!
My friend Janis Kenyon ("Jantango"), has been living in Buenos Aires many years and her blog "Tango Chamuyo" is dedicated to honoring the city's great milongueros who are not international celebrities. On the Youtube page of Osvaldo and Ana Maria's first tango, Janis wrote 5 years ago: "This was Osvaldo's first time dancing for an audience. At least the world can see this incredible milonguero at 71 on video."
The third and final video in the playlist is with my dear friend Juan Topalian, about whom I have written before, and even posted this video. (I actually discovered this lovely video on Youtube last year thanks to Jantango's blog!)
Please note in all 3 videos which of the figures that Michael asks about yesterday's first Ask Helaine" are present in the improvisations. To refresh your memory, the figures he lists are: Colgada, Gancho, Enganche (leg wrap), Boleo, and Calesita.
After you've watched the videos, I would love to hear what you discovered, and what you like about these two men's interpretations, how they're different from each other, how Milonguero Style, as you observe it here, differs from Tango Salon . . . in short, please share your thoughts in the comments section below the videos!
Note: Usually I choose higher quality videos, but I thought this was worth asking your patience with the darkness of the first two videos. With Osvaldo's light trousers and Ana Maria's bare arms and legs, it is not difficult to watch them, especially if you click on the icon on the lower right to enlarge the video to full screen!
Have fun and let us know below what you think!