Floor Craft Question: Volcadas vs. Apilado Embrace

If we consider volcadas to be inappropriate, as some dancers do, on the social dance floor - how should we view the deep apilado embrace?

Both can take up more room on the milonga floor, though both can also be done very small. It seems volcadas are often more stationary related to the line of dance. So would the issue be more about space used - or more about impeding the line of dance by stopping/slowing down?

The first picture (in sepia tone) is a volcada example from Wikimedia.

The second picture is an example of apilado embrace from Igor Polk's site about Tango Apilado:


I must admit that one of the reasons I agreed to learn volcadas is because, when done small and fluidly, it's like getting a little apilado "fix" in the dance. By small and fluid I mean I hardly feel them. By the time I think, 'oh wow, was that a volcada lead?' - it's over and I'm already stepping back from the cross.

So readers, what do you think? Can we really say that volcadas are out if apilado is okay? Or is it really just about how each one is executed?


Unknown said...

Hi Mari

I think it is always about how something is executed. As in how does the move affect the floor/line of dance. I have seen ochos executed in such a way that the dancers are moving back and forth over a path almost 6 feet wide of dance floor while they are moving along the line of dance. It's always about how you affect AND respect the dancers around you. In my community there are some who when they are dancing are using approx. 36 sq. ft. of floor space compared to 9 sq. ft. used by most. That is a box moving around the line of dance that is 6 ft. by 6 ft. compared to the box that I use that is approx. 3 ft. by 3 ft. (Some may consider that too much. I'm still trying to get better.) Other dancers are afraid to go anywhere near them which makes the box even bigger. Shouldn't they pay twice the cover that I pay for using three times the floor space?
Sorry a bit of a rant, but you started it. LOL It's about RESPECT.

Anonymous said...

I think part of people problem with the volcada may be that it involves some sort of backwards (back diagonal) step away from the leaders regular position to achieve it.

The feet may be more apart in aplilado, but it is not because the lead took a back step against LOD to achieve it.

That being said, the extra training we have received in the forward embrace (from an Argentine couple who lives there and dances socially there) is created less by weight and more by posture (not so much space between the feet and no deep knee bend).


Mari said...

Mike and Bastet - thank you both for your comments; you're both right of course. It is all in the execution. Respect for the line of dance and surrounding dancers is the foundation of executing a step well.

Tango Theologian said...

Little baby volcadas are cool, and one can execute them with the man stepping either into the middle (with no second lane) or in the line of dance, which he has just sized up. Mark

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