“Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence.” Henry David Thoreau
Last Saturday, the milonga at Esquina had a few more beginners than usual. This is always exciting of course - we love to see new addicts, err, I mean, faces. It does make the floor a little rougher though. The line of dance is more uncertain, the pace of dancers doesn't come together as easily. So those that were comfortable enough to do so, tended to dance milonguero. This, of course, was wonderful for me.
A tanguero whose dancing I enjoy very much, asked me to dance. It wasn't until he said something in between the first and second song of the tanda, that I noticed he had been "only" walking. This particular dancer does know quite a few fancy moves, and enjoys leading them. He leads them carefully, deliberately - and he waits. Even if I have no idea in advance how to follow the step, he guides me through it. Tonight he was keeping it simple, closer.
He said simply that the floor was a little chaotic and this was a good time to dance milonguero and mostly walk. He didn't quite sound apologetic. But I think he wondered if I was somehow expecting more. I told him what I tell any tanguero who asks me - walking is everything. I love to be walked - not marched - but walked, musically, warmly, with connection and emotion. I can't ever seem to convey what I mean - or I suppose, how much I mean it.
We're lucky in our community to have several really great walkers. They make my evening. I've written before about my love of a good tango walk. Most recently on Dance Forums when Mr. Walker asked if anyone had spend a milonga walking: http://www.dance-forums.com/showthread.php?t=34225&page=2
Walking is the heart beat. With a great walk, everything is easier. The connection is stronger, I can feel the music through my partner, not just hear it around him.
In an only somewhat related note, I was sitting with a few people who had come to hear our local tango composer, Glover Gill, play, who were not dancers. They listened to Glover, watched the floor of dancers thoughtfully. And then one of them said, "I thought tango would be more exciting. This is kind of dull."
I answered, "it's only dull because you're not dancing. Tango, I mean the addictive tango that keeps me coming to the milongas even when I'm dead tired - that tango - is for the dancers, not for the audience. You should really give a try sometime. If you think love Glover's music now, just wait until you dance to it."
“He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying.” --Nietzsche