Milonga review: A Puro Tango

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For about 35 years, Dario Rodriguez organized three weekly milongas at Salon Canning in Palermo until his recent passing.  His daughter Patricia is now in charge, and the new name is Tango en Canning.

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Floor:  The wood floor is showing wear.  Some cracks aren’t filled, and a heel tip got caught.

Sound system:  Speakers hang over the dance floor for sound where it needs to be.  Level was enough to overpower the conversation on the dance floor.

Deejay:  Mario Orlando, probably the most experienced in Buenos Aires after Oscar Hector Malagrino.

Entrada: 75 pesos; bottled water is 28 pesos.

Seating: The tables have two chairs facing the floor. Aisles between the tables allow  access to the dance floor.  Two persons  occupy each table, and very few have three.  My friend and I sat near the patio doors, directly under the air-conditioner. Bring along a jacket if you get cold like I do.

Dancers:  Serious dancers (60+ years) who have their reserved tables for many years.  Newcomers should not expect to get a front row center seat, but a large tip to a waiter might achieve results.

Waiters:  They are responsible for seating.  I arrived at 19 hs and stood at the bar waiting to be seated. Finally, I sat at a table near the bar to wait for my girlfriend to arrive. The waitress (who knows me in Lo de Elsita) moved me to the other end of the room. When my friend arrived, I went to join her in another corner, but the seat was reserved.  We asked the waiter  in that section if there was a table for us.  It was a night of musical chairs for me, as I bounced from one corner of the room to another.  I’m used to a friendly greeting with a smile and good service by the waiters in Lo de Celia.

I enjoyed listening to the music and watching the dancing.  There were many familiar faces.  The last time I attended was May 2013, so I felt like an outsider at a milonga I once attended regularly.  I remembered a few milongueros viejos who once occupied the front row chairs and are now gone.

Video of the dancing the evening I was there.

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