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an excerpt from "TANGO VOICE" blog


Factors Limiting the Adoption of Argentine Tango Cultural Traditions in First World Milongas
..........."Another factor limiting the spread of Argentine Tango de Salon in First World cultures has been, ironically, the role of tango instructors from Argentina, who have been willing co-conspirators in the proliferation of Tango Extranjero. This began in the late 1980s and 1990s when cast members of the stage productions ‘Tango Argentino’ and ‘Forever Tango’ saw opportunities for increasing income by teaching Tango Escenario, which was applied immediately to the dance floor in First World milongas, with little or no mention that this was tango for the stage and not used for dancing at milongas in Buenos Aires. This misrepresentation of Argentine tango by tango instructors from Argentina has continued into the 21st century with numerous Argentines whose primary source of income is teaching Tango Extranjero, in the form of Tango Escenario, Tango Nuevo, or a glamorized version of Tango Estilo del Barrio replete with sacadas, barridas, ganchos, and a variety of adornments. By the fact that they are from Argentina, an air of validity is bestowed upon these instructors, and na├»ve audiences believe they are learning the social tango of Buenos Aires from practitioners of the art form, whereas in fact the participation of these Argentine tango instructors in the milonga culture of Buenos Aires is often minimal at best (outside of their appearance in exhibitions). The fact that these Argentine tango instructors misrepresenting Argentine tango are headliners in numerous tango festivals in First World countries further limits the communication of Argentine tango milonga culture at the expense of a more marketable adaptation for First World cultural proclivities, i.e., Tango Extranjero. In contrast to the general misrepresentation of Argentine tango cultural traditions, tango instructors from Argentina who have participated extensively in dancing in Buenos Aires milonga are few in number. Particularly sparse in this instructional stream are milongueros and milongueras, men and women who have spent significant parts of their lives living tango culture on a regular basis in the milongas of Buenos Aires. Instead, a version of tango dance labeled as ‘Tango Milonguero’ increasingly is being taught as an element in their teaching program by tango instructors who are not active participants in the Argentine tango milonga culture [The Rise and Fall of Tango Milonguero in North America in the 21st Century (Highlighting the Denver Tango Festival)]. This diversification of the tango instructional program meets the needs not only of the instructors from Argentina, but also serves the economic interests of promoters of the One Tango Philosophy in offering additional instructional modules for tango consumer consumption."....................
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