Milonga 101: Tango shoe shuffle

Milongueros wear normal street shoes for dancing at the milongas.  They never bring along another pair of shoes.  It’s the same for the milongueras who wear the high-heeled shoes they will dance in.  It’s the only way they make a proper entrance at a milonga.

The tango shoe shuffle describes newer dancers and foreigners (men and women) who carry their dance shoes to the milongas and shuffle into them at the table.   Many dancers start changing their shoes in public before and after dance classes.   They continue their routine in the milongas.

I remember being seated at the table of a woman who was changing her shoes while an observant milonguero pinched his nose; he had my attention, and I laughed because he made his point.  Nobody wants to smell foot odor after hours of dancing.   If only the woman had noticed the milonguero, she might have thought twice about it.

If you think no one notices you changing your shoes at the table, you are mistaken.  That’s why going to the ladies’ room before being escorted to your table is an option.  Your potential dance partners don’t need to see you wearing your old walking shoes, etc. which convey a first impression and label you as a “tourist who doesn’t know any better.”  After changing your shoes,  simply wait at the entrance for the host to escort you to a table.

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One Response to “Milonga 101: Tango shoe shuffle”

  1. lina Says:

    i prefer to be seated at my table first. then i put my fan and mint box on the table. then i take my shoes and lipstick and go to the ladies to change. i come to Bs.As. every spring to dance. the walk back and forth lets me be seen and remembered from last year. i never change my shoes at my table, but i think the extra shashay across the milonga is a good reintroduction for me.

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