Friday, January 23, 2015

What is CADENCIA?????

Not being a Spanish speaker and hearing the word CADENCIA over and over again I tried to do my homework and simply google the answer. What is cadencia? You can feel it. You can see it, but when you try to find the verbal explanation it becomes extremely vague.

My intuitive understanding is that it is dancers interpretation of the phrasing of music, their response to it. Almost sort of translation. If music was a foreign language and the dancers the interpreters they can take the music and translate it into dance. Now - here in New York most people are bilingual and we all know that sometimes the word to word translation makes no sense. Or it makes sense but its ugly. The exact translation does not carry the real meaning. Looses it somehow or makes it flat. We all know that certain words and phrases mean more or mean something else than it seems at the first glance. They also mean something else when said in certain tone of voice or certain facial expression or in certain situation. So when we translate from English to our language (whatever that language might be) - we never really translate literally. However - we do try to find the way to keep rhythm and phrasing similar to original not to loose the intention of the author, the intention of the music. When the musical phrase comes to the close - the movement comes to the close.

Here is  the video of the class teaching 'cadencia' explained as a sort of rocking movement.

In cadencia is explained as - the close of a musical section

So it can be said that cadence refers to how one closes musical sequences. The movements should always illustrate, or be a variation of, the musical cadence / intonation.

An analogy may be made with punctuation, with some weaker cadences acting as commas that indicate a pause or momentary rest, while a stronger cadence acts as a period that signals the end of the phrase or sentence.” (The Musical Life by W. A. Mathieu ) And in addition to his general definition quoted above, Mathieu  describes a perfect cadence as a “falling into simplicity”.

At Joy in motion website we read: 'Cadencia, for me, relates very strongly to pauses and momentary lilts – part of the punctuation – of the dance, since it is in these moments when obvious movement is at a minimum and, therefore, internal energy can be felt the strongest. It feels very much like the “falling into simplicity” of musical cadence, a slow deep breath that provides both rest and a building of energy to return to action. Isn’t this how we begin the dance, letting the music and the connection fill our body like lungs fill with air, waiting for the impulse to move? And isn’t this also how we finish the dance, settling into a final position that provides release and a parting essence? The start, the finish, the pauses in between… this ebb and flow of the dance, with its peaks and valleys, is also present in my body when I execute a pause and feel that quality of cadencia coursing through my body, that “surfing on the waves of the music and the connection.” (See more at: Joy in motion)

Saturday, January 17, 2015

4 Dance Teachers Needed - maybe it's YOU?

Are you a ballroom teacher, salsa teacher, ballet or jazz instructor?
Expand your teaching options by adding Argentine Tango to your resume.

Tango Teachers Training program  (TTT) is offered exclusively in New York. It is a 64 hrs / 16 week training (4 hrs a week).

You can attend the TTT just to work on yourself. Widen your horizons. Improve.
But if you really good, have teaching charisma, want to spread Tango around and share your Tango passion with the newcomers by introducing them to Tango community - we are looking to fill 4 teaching positions.

All dance teacher with any kind of dancing experience are welcome. As long as you can aware of your body and have it under control, we give you the base of knowledge necessary to teach.

New session starts: February 3rd 7:30pm at Adelante Studios, 25 West 31st Street, Fl 2, New York, NY 10001.

Main sessions are scheduled every Tuesday 7:30 -- 10:30pm.
Teacher assisting hour is flexible.

Please note following requirements: completed dance training or minimum of 2 years Tango dancing experience or knowledge of following basics:  8 count basic with ocho forward, Ocho cortado, Walking outsidepartner left and right, Rebound, Double time, back and forward crosses, back and forward ochos and the difference between the two, giros to the left and right from front or back ochos, paradas and barridas, including sandwich and mordida steps. 

Cost of the training is $1600 ($800 due at the moment of enrollment. Remaining balance payable in 2 monthly installments of $400). Although we started this program to fill in teaching positions at Ultimate Tango, please note that completion of the curse does not guarantee employment.

For more information please check:
If you ready to sign up - ENROLL HERE 

Thursday, January 8, 2015


PictureWe hear very often that Tango music is set in 2/4 time. OK, but what does that MEAN? 

Music is written in measures. Each measure has a pre-defined number of beats. Remember when you walk during the Tango class and your teacher annoys you to death shouting: ''beat!, beat!, beat!, beat!...' - yes, those.


Composers decide the number of beats per measure early on and convey this information with a time signature. The magic 2 by 4 (2/4) is a time signature for Tango music.
Time signatures consist of two numbers written like a fraction.
- The top number of the time signature tells you how many beats to count. This could be any number. Most often the number of beats will fall between 2 and 12.
- The bottom number tells you what kind of note to count. That is, whether to count the beats as quarter notes, eighth notes, or sixteenth notes. So the only numbers you will see as the bottom number (the denominator) will correspond to note values:


  • 1 = whole note (you’ll never see this) 
  • 2 = half note 
  • 4 = quarter note 
  • 8 = eighth note 
  • 16 = sixteenth note 
You could continue on with 32, 64, but you will hopefully never encounter them! After a while it gets a bit unwieldy. The most common bottom numbers are 4, 8 and 16.

There is another trick to it. 
There also exist a way to indicate the silence in music. That silence indicated by note rests also has value. Exactly like notes do.

Tango is in most cases 2/4 which means there are two beats (2). Each beat is a quarter note (4).
The fact that each beat has a value of quarter note DOES NOT mean you are limited only to quarter notes. Beats may contain half notes, quarter notes, eighth notes, rests, whatever the composer wants, but all note and rest values must combine to equal no more or less than the top number (or numerator) of the time signature.

PictureHere is a cheat sheet:
1 Whole note = 2 Half notes = 4 Quarter notes = 8 eighth notes = 16 sixteenth notes

1 Whole note = 2 Half notes
1 Half note = 2 Quarter notes
1 Quarter note = 2 eighth notes
1 eighth note = 2 sixteenth notes

There is also a way to extend the existence of note by half by using a dot....

Now - why is this important for dancers?
In a way - it's not. You can go to Argentina without speaking Spanish and survive. I did. But there is a huge difference between simply surviving and actual participation. 

In music - most people intuitively hear. Knowing the structure though helps you verbally express what you hear and understand what the music tells you. It helps you advance in interpreting the music with understanding. Also - now - you can discuss it.
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