Multiple tandas

Tango Immigrant wrote about the multiple tanda custom in Norway although she herself prefers one tanda with partners.  Her country is too far away for any influence from Buenos Aires to reach them about the codes and customs, so they make their own.  That’s fair.  The Norwegians don’t understand the significance of two consecutive tandas with the same partner in Buenos Aires milongas.  That code gets lost in translation to another culture.  It’s an important one to understand when visiting the milongas in Buenos Aires.

If multiple tandas prevail at Norwegian milongas, how do dancers refresh themselves if they continue dancing?  How do they have a drink? Or take a break to bask in the feeling? take a few minutes to rest? Is it about  meeting a quota for the night?  Is tango their substitute for exercise at the gym?

This my theory on why the multiple tanda custom is popular there.  The winters are long and cold up north.  Staying in a warm, comfortable embrace is nice, so for many changing partners is not an option.

My versions of the evaluation system:

One tanda — it could feel like a one-night stand without emotional commitment or future involvement.

Two tandas – getting to know you, getting to know all about you, getting to like you, getting to hope you like me.

Three tandas – would you like to have coffee?  I doubt Norwegians know what this means in Buenos Aires.

The most important question is — do they have multiple tangasms with multiple tandas?

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8 Responses to “Multiple tandas”

  1. Bob Says:

    If I lived in Buenos Aires and I danced at the same milonga two times per week and did only one tanda with the same partner each night, we would have danced together 100 times in the year. If I visit for only two weeks per year and have 3 tandas per night with the same partner we will have danced only six times. 100 times versus 6. moral — live in Buenos Aires.

  2. Geoff Nicholls Says:

    Ho ho!

  3. Chris Says:

    Interesting. Where are these multi-tandaring Norwegian couples during the curtain? Standing on the dance floor? Standing at the edge? Sitting together in the nearest available seats?

  4. terpsichoral Says:

    Except at El Motivo and at the La Viruta practica, people don’t dance multiple consecutive tandas in Buenos Aires. Therefore the code you suggest is meaningless. It just doesn’t happen.

  5. jantango Says:

    Iona,
    I am aware of the tradition in Buenos Aires after 15 years here. El Motivo and La Viruta aren’t helping dancers in any way. Eventually, all must learn that one tanda is the norm. I referred to the use of multiple tandas in Norway. Multiple consecutive tandas is ignorance of an established code that is prevalent in social dancing around the world.

  6. David Says:

    You tell em Jan. When I see a woman dance multiple consecutive tandas I lose respect for her especially if she’s an experienced dancer. If she has no respect for the codes I have no respect for her.

  7. Janet Rieck Says:

    I think from what I have seen most “couples” dance one tanda at a time and dance together throughout the night in Buenos Aires.. It is also possible they will dance two tandas together…but not more than that. It depends on the music and if they like certain music over others. Single dancers should dance only one tanda if they are smart. But in todays milonga it seems respect has gone to the winds. It is better to maintain your own set of values based on the codes here and stick to them. That way the people in the milonga will know your situation and accept whatever you demand. But then there are those who have no respect for anything. You can’t focus on that. I don’t go to La Viruta so don’t know what it is like there. I speak only from what I have seen in the older crowd in the more traditional milongas. There is a silent code of conduct that you need to know and respect because it will affect whether you dance or not and who you dance with. Ignoring it will get you no where here…

  8. Dan Says:

    I think it is none of my business how many tandas other people dance with each other.

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