An expat Californian building a new life via the tango in Buenos Aires since 2003, including information on learning the tango and where to dance it in Buenos Aires.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Dancing in the City of Angels

I'm in red and black at right, dancing with Avi.

I usually never take my tango shoes to L.A. when I visit. But this time I planned to meet my old tango friends at the milonga of my first teacher, Linda Valentino, Tango Mio.
That's me in black on the right

I loved seeing so many familiar faces, faces of my Los Angeles tango family: Flo, Dee, Howard, Manley, Johanna, Marcelo, Linda, Malina, so many.

An extra-added bonus was son Jason and his friend Connie attending with me. What a surprise to see Barbara Trelles who had been a student some years past in Buenos Aires!

It's a wonderful venue, the old Leonardo's Ballroom on LaBrea, with a great wooden floor packed with dancers as soon as the  QTango quintet from Tucson took the stage.

We also saw Black Swan, but I was disappointed. Yes, Natalie Portman is gorgeous, but enough already of the closeups of her face with the same expression: closeup--longshot--closeup--longshot. And we're supposed to believe the PR that she did her own dancing? I don't expect an actress to be able to dance the lead in Swan Lake, but the faking just seemed so, well, fake.

The makeup was outstanding though, and so was the performance of Barbara Hershey as the ultimate controlling ballet mother. (Sure I was a ballet mother myself, but I never was able to control Jason, not then, not now!) I do hope, though, that the film will make people want to see the ballet. Along with MacMillan's Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake is my favorite. I've seen it danced all over the world and like The Nutcracker, I'm never tired of it.

My last dance event of 2010 was The Nutcracker danced by the Pasadena Dance Theater at the historical Pasadena Playhouse. For me, it was never Christmas without The Nutcracker. I have many memories of watching Jason perform every Nutcracker role over the years, from Snow King to Russian dancer to Mouse King to Cavalier.

Jason as The Nutcracker, with Elkin as Clara, in the Los Angeles Ballet circa a long time ago

It was a cold and crispy winter night. We climbed into the hills of Pasadena while the stars shone overhead and the city lights twinkled below.

The performance was wonderful, great staging, well-rehearsed, delightful; a fitting finale to my holidays in Los Angeles.


ModernTanguera said...

Cherie, that sounds like a delightful trip! (Avi is one of my favorite LA dancers...) I also adore the ballet Swan Lake and hope that this movie inspires people to go see it. I performed the dance of the baby swans in college and always admire the ballerinas who can make it look so effortless! Ah, ballet!

a Broad said...

Say hello to my old hometown, LA !! What a fun way to ring in the New Year!
Natalie Portman took ballet for many years, I expect that she was a good choice but those close ups annoy me in a lot of movies, I know what you mean :)
There was an interesting article in the NYT with an interview with her about the training etc. I hope the film comes here to BA ! Right now the theatres are closed ... for the holidays !! :( loco ...

Angelina said...

Before I go to LA next to visit daughter I will ask for your advice on where to dance!
Wishing you and Ruben a happy, healthy and safe 2011.