The immediate change of note about the 2009 Buenos Aires tango championships is the name difference -- the first six years the tango championships were called Campeonato Metropolitano de Tango de Buenos Aires; this year it was Campeonato de la Ciudad.
The second big difference is the reduction of money spent on the championships. Previously there were colorful brochures plastering the city and all the milongas. There was lots of buzz and PR far in advance. The event was spread out over months in the autumn, culminating in August with the big finals in La Rural, where thousands of people waited in line for the free tickets to watch the judging, the dancing, and the live orchestras that performed. The Metropolitano was tied in with the Mundial as well as the Tango Festival making it a huge event drawing tango tourists from all over the world.
This year was definitely very low key. Very little publicity, and the whole thing was rushed through in a few weeks, with the finals and the semifinals directly following the qualifying heats in local milongas. Last night was a special event, billed as the Baile de los Campeones, in Salon Canning of performances by the winners. It was supposed to be a celebration. But it was dull and just a little sad.
I had planned to take pictures last night and write a nice article, but you know what? I just can't. So sparsely attended, the dancing so very unimpressive, the atmosphere so opposite of festive, that I will settle for just posting the photo of the winners (the couple on the right are the "Seniors") and the video of the Finals last Saturday. (Taken from the 2xTango website.)
To read about Ruben's and my participation in 2006, go here.