Posts Tagged: video

Videos with Irfan Yüksel

Below are 2 videos with Irfan from Istanbul. They are improvised performances.

So fun to see Irfan and me dance and compare it to our video from 2008. He chose the music and we did not rehearse to them prior. We did learn a lot about each other through teaching together, putting together the classes with ideas from both of our years of experiences and shared toolboxes.

Coming from a dance background, where most of the time you are preparing for performances or looking to perform your own work or another’s choreography or possibly even an improvisational score, the skill of improvising a tango is still a work in progress for me. I am always questioning the role of performance in this genre and the role of the experience of the medium: live or video. I know I have experienced a live viewing of a dance and have been moved to emotions only to re-experience it on video, to show someone how great it was, for example, only to think, “hmm – not so great here”! I worked with a choreographer in my contemporary dance years who obsessively recorded every rehearsal. In the end, I found her work looked so great on video and yet, I was never moved by seeing the dancers perform live….

In short,  in the role of performance you have the perspective of the performer and of the audience. In a solo performance the artist, the dancer, has some control over the desired outcome. In group choreographies, the choreographer trusts the dancers to produce a vision. In tango, as we know, the trust is in your partner and your experience, with the music, your body, your partner.

But is there any responsibility to your audience?

I think there always is, and have always felt this way. As one of my brilliant students once said that he hoped in a performance that the dancers would show you something new, something that you, as the audience, hadn’t seen before. And this is not always in terms of figures, or patterns for, as we all know, they have all been done before. But the surprises, the act of being moved, is usually found in the musical interpretations, or the expression of the idea or content, and in tango, the connection, the understanding between the 2 people.

For me this year of opportunity has also been an exploration in performance. I feel that I have had very little experience with performing tango, and it has been a privilege and joy thus far performing with varied talented personas and having these new embodied experiences.

For me the question is, can I express myself and my love of the music, with any partner, and show my audience something transcendent, selfless? Can I move those who watch? I strive for this….

And I leave you with these:

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Belgian Marathon and Videos in Budapest

Belgium PierA Belgian Marathon and 3 Performance Videos from Budapest

I just returned from a lovely weekend in Belgium at a marathon on the coast on a Pier in Blackenberge. A rather small marathon (as they usually are) with about 200 in attendance.The dancing level was quite mixed but I think this is the way these marathons are for the most part. I have been told of marathons where the level of dancing is quite high. I wonder what that would be like!!!!

I also had the opportunity to have a quick snapshot tour of Brugge. Oh My Loveliness! This is a place I must return to. It was quaint and romantic and filled with roaming tourists but otherwise, there was splendid and beautiful buildings to look at and cobble stoned streets to wander through and the canals…  and of course, chocolate. We arrived on the bus arranged by the organizers of the weekend marathon and immediately the smell of sugar and chocolate filled our heads!

I ran into some friends from other marathons and places in Europe, such as Daniela and Anya from Berlin and Agi from Poland (living in England). And I made some new friends, starting with my lovely Italian roommate, Irene. This marathon had many Italians in attendance and I enjoyed hanging out with them and laughing a lot! My Italian-ness feeling very at home listening to them talk and laugh!  I had some great tandas of course! And fantastic food. What a spread! These marathons really often have lovely food – so far, anyway. I have been told that some of them do not have splendid food. This El AbrazodelMar was another fun marathon for me! I am glad I picked it. Not sure why I did but I did and it was a great interruption to the rhythm in Budapest.

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As the holidays are fast approaching, decorations and markets are everywhere. I actually really love to see the lights. Budapest has street light decorations and a vast outdoor market. You can get mulled wine everywhere! Brugge was decorated too! I love the lights! I was in a shopping mall close to me here in Budapest and heard American Christmas music playing and had to laugh out loud! Almost made me cringe a little too!

I had the opportunity to perform at a Saturday milonga in Budapest after I shared some tango to a room full of quiet locals! I have posted the 3 songs here. János and I did not practice at all prior to this performance – so it truly is an improvisation! (And I apologize if you have seen multiple versions as I completely switched 2 letters of János’ last name and had to re-edit the video! I will really remember his last name now!)

I will be in Budapest until December 18th and then I will be off again…..


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Class at Cooperativa on 1/12/14

For those who were in class on Sunday 1/12 at Milonga Cooperativa I am posting the demo. Thanks to Ed, Paula, and the cooperativa gang for having us. Ed videotaped the demo and didn’t know that it would be useful to all of us!

The class was on Barridas y Ganchos. A big topic to cover in a 1 hour class but a fun combination to keep our brains active. I think learning more advanced combinations can often just remind us of our fundamentals – ie: where is my axis? where is yours?

If you are interested in having Rommel and I at the Milonga Cooperativa to teach a class please let the Cooperativa know.

Rommel and Daniela Demo from 1/12/14

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Performance at Salon Canning

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