Milonga is the fastest of the three Tango-dances. Also Milonga improvises the dance figures out of the step-repertoire of Tango Argentino. However, from the music own figures emerged, that are danced in small fast steps. The cheerful Milonga forms a balance to the melancholy of the most Tango dances.
Milonga is danced in 2/4- or 4/4-time.
Past and Present
Tango Argentino is music, dance and song. It came into being in Buenos Aires and Montevideo at the beginning of the 20th century. Later on elements of Jazz were influencing factors and musicians like Astor Piazzolla added new impulses with "Tango Nuevo", the modern Tango.
In 1913 the popularity of Tango began with a prohibition: Emperor Wilhelm II banned the improper dance. However, only a short period later he revoked this prohibition and in 1914 Tango was danced again at the royal court. In 1930, only in Berlin, there were almost 900 bars with a "general dance admittance". Even at that time Argentine Tango orchestras appeared on stage, even if only a few reminded of the Tango played in Buenos Aires. European audiences with its own mentality considerably differed from the Argentinian one. Here the people were in search of distraction, gambling, amusement and entertainment, whereas in Buenos Aires Tango was lived. There it was, and even is, a special cultural asset.
Today tangueros and tangueras, as the dancers call themselves, deal a lot with South-American culture. Most of them want to dance Tango like it was danced in Buenos Aires in the forties. They attend Tango classes offered in many cities, or visit the classes of known guest instructors touring all over Europe at regular intervals. Or they travel directly into the Argentine capital to attend the original Tango classes. Due to that, cultures are mixed in a permanent exchange. In Europe Tango is danced with local mentality - melted with techniques from Buenos Aires.
In contrast to Standard ballroom dances Tango Argentino is characterized by the dancers interaction. It is not subjected to strict control. It's true, there are basic dance steps, but these are so variable that Tango always will be improvised. At the beginning of a dance the lady doesn't know the steps to dance, as the gentleman is leading. In an attentive and sensitive way he shows "where to go" - respectful, polite and, if possible, with humorous self-irony. The lady can let go and both can enjoy. Tango is dedicated to emotions and individual expressions. The essential techniques have to be a part of the Tango poetry. Under no circumstances it may be obvious.
Tango bewitches with its passion and its enchanting melancholy. It is the longing for nostalgia, it fulfils the desire of human proximity - however, often only for a few night-time hours. Tango lets the dancing partners immerse into a world differing from rapid communication society. It doesn't urge to hurry. Contrary, it flirts with composure, it encourages enjoyment.
In addition Tango is more than a sad and melancholic affair, it serves cheerful moods too. Tangueros dance Tango-Vals, which reminds of Viennese Waltz, when they are lively and perhaps have fallen in love. Tango-Milonga, faster and more vivid as the original Tango, is preferred when feelings are cheerful. The dancing steps are slightly changed - different is the rhythm.
A Tango Argentino
The dancing posture decides on the experience "Tango": While the beginner takes its partner at arm distance as he does with Standard Ballroom Dances, the advanced Tanguero takes the partner into his arm: The man doesn't only hold the lady in his arms - he embraces her. The lady leans towards the gent without loosing self control. As she stands on the toes and leans towards her partner she determines the distance to him by keeping the tension in her arms. This tension makes, that she feels his movements, which tell her, what the man intends. And she can react by following him.
The Tanguero decides when to start the dance. A smooth pressure from the front or at the side - the lady becomes aware of it and follows. Small delays are intended - and necessary, as she needs the time to understand the next step. She must feel the impulses her partner gives to her and must feel into him. If the dancing partners know each other and have adapted their movements - and trust each other, the ladies dance with closed eyes.
For a good Tango feeling not the steps are evident, but the harmonic interpretation of the music by the dancing couple. A couple lost in the dance devotes itself to the rhythm, joins thinking, feeling and acting, which looks esthetical even to the observer.
And every Tango is enjoyed to the full. In addition the tangueros hold their dancing partners for another two or three seconds as not to finish the dance as abruptly.