After eleven years living, dancing, teaching tango, and writing in Buenos Aires, I came home to L.A. in 2014, where I'm reconstructing my life.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Tango Lover's Guide to Buenos Aires

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Tango tourism is a relatively new phenomenon in Buenos Aires. When I first came in 1997, it was a rarity. We 35 or so Americans were looked on as exotic, and many milongas and milongueros didn't know what to do with us. Luckily we had an expert guide (Daniel Trenner), and for many of us on the tour, it was a life-changing experience.

Since then foreigners from the four corners of the earth have flocked to Buenos Aires to experience the "real" tango in its birth place. Every serious tanguero eventually makes the pilgrimage.

But the milongas are a hidden world. You have to know where they are, which night of the week, what time. There are no neon signs outside saying, "Tango Here Tonight!" That's part of the charm.

But sometimes foreign tangueros get lost. They don't know where, when, what milongas to attend, even if they have a list of them, even if they have all of the free tango magazines in hand.

Because it's important to know what style is danced, the age group, the ambiance, I'm surprised that more tango guides for foreign dancers have not been written. No matter what anyone claims, we all need help to figure out how to spend our time and our pesos when we visit Buenos Aires.

Migdalia Romero has written the Tango Lover's Guide to Buenos Aires: Insights and Recommendations to help the tango tourist make the most of their vacation. One thing I especially like about her book is the Table of Contents, but more importantly the Index, so helpful in finding the information you need that is buried in the middle of the book.

To help keep the information current, she publishes monthly an online guide to changes and special tango events.

Also included is information on tango shows, cultural centers, shopping, restaurants.

Another resource to add to Sally Blake's Happy Tango.


Anonymous said...

I wonder if you also like the cover picture of the book, tangocherie? When I compare it with the first Pet Peeve picture (the one with the firm grip) I must say that the two pictures look very similar...

tangocherie said...

Hola Anon!

I never noticed the similarity--even the colors! But this just proves my point, that this embrace is becoming the norm. However I like the book picture more because her arm and hand are relaxed.

Thanks for the comment.

Anonymous said...

To me the most important thing about the embrace is that both partners can relax and feel comfortable, no matter where they put their hands. The woman's hand on the book cover doesn't look very relaxed to me.

tangocherie said...

Let me qualify that: her arm and hand are "more" relaxed in the book photo than the Pet Peeve picture, which shows an arm very tense with fingers spread and gripping lower on the man's back.

I admit, it's a matter of degrees.

And I really hate this new fad.