I have never danced before; will I be able to join the beginner’s class?
Everybody has to start for the first time!
Because Tango is not about complicated 'patterns' you will find it quite easy to get into (it can take a long time to perfect, but it's quite an accessible dance for someone new to partner dancing).
I have danced before, is there much point in my attending the Beginner's Course?
There are many reasons why joining this course is a good idea, even if you've attended tango classes before.
I am a beginner but I think I am good enough for the improver’s class.
We are happy for people to attend any of our courses and classes but it is important not to over-stretch yourself, as this can be self-defeating. It always makes sense to get a good hold of the core techniques taught at the Beginner level before moving on to a higher level. Ask for our advice on this - we can help you assess your dancing so that you are able to get the best out of the classes that are right for you.
I do other forms of dance; can I just come to your improver’s class?
It's not advisable! Argentine Tango is very different from any other kind of dance you've experienced (for instance, very few dances are danced in 'close embrace'. But there's no doubt that experience of other dance forms will help you to learn the basics of Tango more quickly - when we see evidence of this we tailor our input during the class so that some individuals receive a level of challenge based on their ability.
How long does it take to become an improver?
It depends on many things: Do you feel confident enough with your balance, your coordination? Do you practice enough? Do you attend practicas? Some people take longer than others.
When you have completed our 8 weeks Beginner's Course, you should be ready to attend our Improver classes. We will be happy to advise you on this.
Sometime, people new to Tango prefer to repeat the Beginners course before moving on. This makes absolute sense to us. It's surprising how much there is to gain by attending those classes a second time.
How many classes a week should you do to progress quickly?
If you have attended one class in a week you will find that dance practice is more important than attending more classes. Although the movements in tango appear reasonably simple, it is necessary to get your body used to dancing them with a partner. The class will provide you with the essential technical input, and our guided practica will help to cement your understanding, but if you possibly can, arrange to practice more!
How do you begin to learn and will I be able to understand how to dance with the music?
Every type of dance has a language. When dancers learn the essential vocabulary of that language (in terms of a range of simple movements which we call the dance 'repertoire', that can be communicated between the dancing couple) it becomes easier to communicate with your partner and to respond to the music.
We ensure you learn the core techniques of footwork, posture, body 'signals', attitude, positioning and intention. An awareness of these factors makes it possible to indicate the direction, shape and mood of the dance to your partner. Whilst Tango is referred to as a 'led' dance (i.e. it is danced 'in the moment' and not choreographed) the 'lead' is actually very subtle and becomes almost intuitive. You will start to become an intuitive dancer as you understand and assimilate these core principles.
As time goes on, you will find that you can feel the music and interpret it through your movements (there is no 'sequence' of movements, the dancers respond to the music as it unfolds.
As your technique develops and your repertoire of movement grows you will more easily understand signals, shapes and patterns in the music; you will move to the music in an improvised way and your partner will dance with you.
In Tango, the leader (commonly the male dancer but not necessarily so) leads by invitation. If that 'invitation' is accepted and understood, the follower will respond. A good leader will provide the follower with time and space to improvise her own movements within the structure embrace and the context of the music. These are reasons why it is so important to develop good technique.
Why do you use Spanish Terminology during the class?
As Tango originated in Argentina, we use the Spanish terminology developed in that country to describe most things relating to the dance. These words provide a universal language which is understood by everyone who dances Tango. We mostly use the Spanish when we teach, but we always provide a translation. It's all part of the fun of Tango!.
For more information check out our Vocabulary page.
Where can I dance Tango?
There are lots of places close by where you can dance Tango. In addition to the practicas and milongas we run you will find there are regular weekly events in various locations in Devon. If you are prepared to travel there is even more Tango to discover.
Do people always dance Tango with the same partner?
They can if they prefer to, but tango is a social dance - when you attend a dance night (a milonga) you will have the opportunity to dance with other people. This is one reason why it's important to develop good technique - you can't rely on someone knowing your 'moves' (heaven forbid!) and they won't take kindly to you trying to 'steer' them around a dancefloor - good technique results in subtlety and elegance and gets you more dances!