Keep going around until we stop   Leave a comment

Keep going around until we stop

Regardless of how many styles develop and how much people may try to modify the tango dance, the structure of the dance based on the concept of giros (turns) will always be a fundamental point of reference for understanding changes and what’s being changed.
A giro begins as soon as the man stops moving along with the woman. Therefore the woman must dance continuously with the intention of going around the man. In other words, the woman dances around the man, and the man dances around the floor. As soon as a giro begins two new body positions are used by the dancers, Right breast in, and Left breast in. 

Right Breast in
This position, as its name indicates, refers to the position of one partner’s right breast in reference to the center of the chest of the other partner. It is found during the process of turning around each other. For the most part, the woman’s right breast is aligned with the center of the man’s chest. The right-breast-in position occurs on a clockwise turn when the woman steps forward with an inside cross of her right leg. The right-breast-in position occurs on a counterclockwise turn when the woman steps back with an outside cross of her left leg.

Left Breast in
This position, as its name indicates, refers to the position of one partner’s left breast in reference to the center of the chest of the other partner. It is found during the process of turning around each other. For the most part, the woman’s left breast is aligned with the center of the man’s chest. The left-breast-in position occurs on a counterclockwise turn when the woman steps forward with an inside cross of her left leg. The left-breast-in position occurs on a clockwise turn when the woman steps back with an outside cross of her right leg.

Anatomy of the Giro
A giro is a turning motion executed by the couple. In a giro, each dancer performs different functions. The woman uses the change of front, to dance around the man. There are two major categories of giros. One happens when the man remains at the center of the woman’s circular trajectory around him. The other one happens when the man steps into the woman’s trajectory, trading places with her by moving into her space and displacing her into the space where he was.

In this workshop the topic is one of many ways to exit the giro to the right on the fourth count of the eight count giro. The figure begins as always from a salida to cruzada, and the giro to the right begins in the parallel system for three counts the woman going through the code (forward-side-back). On the fourth count, the man advances with his right foot but quickly brings his left foot together and changes weight. Then he backs with his right foot, while marking the woman a change of direction to his left.

The summary of the entire 2-1/2 workshop follows…

Second Workshop of 2011 by Alberto and Valorie

A complete primer on the anatomy of giros as well as the structure of the Argentine tango dance can be read in the Gotta Tango book and DVD available HERE.

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Posted February 25, 2011 by Alberto & Valorie in Gotta Tango

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