Tango Argentino > What are the 5 top reasons that make a man ask a woman to dance? Beauty comes first?

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by Paula M, Jul 29, 2010.

  1. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

    1. I have lead both of them in ballroom. I realize that is a different art from from AT, but if they don't follow in BR, I can't imagine they follow any better in AT. They are, literally clueless. I'm a good leader, so it's not that they can't follow me. Also, they are physically uncomfortable to dance with--crush your hand, lean on you, you feel like you're pushing a wheelbarrow full of bricks and the wheel is flat, etc.

    2. I know other people well who have danced BR or WCS with them. These men, who are good leaders, confirmed that they do not follow and are uncomfortable to dance with.

    3. If you mention their names to any local tango dancers who have been around for any length of time, including well-respected instructors, they roll their eyes and gag.

    4. I realize having a background in BR gets me no respect in this world, but I am a professional and have taught MANY couples over the years. I can see when a follower is disconnected and doing her own thing.

    5. Their posture and styling is hideous. Several of you said leaders want to dance with women who make them look good, if I recall correctly.

    Does that help set the picture for you?
  2. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    Amen to this!
  3. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    You and me both. That's one of the reasons why I've been sticking a toe into the WCS world. I still sit a lot, but it's friendlier somehow. And it's kind of cool to be a newbie again--I'm wowed and feeling on top of the world from just the simplest things. (The poor leaders who ask me, though. LOL. I appreciate each and every one of them who have danced with me. I'm not one to turn up my nose at charity at this point. Ha!)
  4. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    If these ladies (assuming that your evaluation of them as poor followers for AT is accurate) still get dances, several cases are possible:

    -Somehow the leaders manage to overcome all those flaws and make dancing with them enjoyable;

    -The guys who dance with these ladies are doing so for lateral motives;

    -The leaders who dance with them also are clueless.
  5. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    I'll defer to your judgement, namely this:
    But I've got to say, with this bit you've just described me to a T.
    I can't follow BR to save my life. I just can't feel anything. But you can damn well better believe I can follow AT really.damn.well.

    While the hand crushing thing is inexcusable, the leaning and feeling like you're pushing a wheelbarrow could be a BR/AT difference. I know I can be accused of feeling like I'm leaning a guy, and feeling like i need to be pushed...when I'm using less pressure in the connection then I can use with a bunch of AT people who like it. (And some who would ask for even more.) It seems to be EXTREMELY different between AT and BR.
  6. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

    Have you been BR dancing for years and spent a ridiculous amount of money on lessons? Because one of these women has (and on WCS and AT lessons), with no improvement. The other has been dancing for years and had some lessons.

    It was true of them before they started AT. Even with the difference in style preference on how much you lean on your partner, surely there's a level of responsiveness that's expected?

    I do think they get a lot of their dances by aggressively asking for them. In fact, I was talking to a man the other night and one of these women walked up behind him and tapped him on the shoulder and asked him to dance. He told her he was sitting it out.
  7. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    No. Not seriously, at least. If they can't follow BR or AT, then I've got nothing. LOL. I'm just throwing them a bone. I know from (very discouraging) personal experience that it's possible to be able to follow one but not the other. Sigh.

    Yes, there is. I don't know how responsive I feel to the one who typically...well, not complains, but...dislikes my "heaviness."
  8. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    Not as much as you might think. If your tango community is an open embrace one, then what you said could have some relevance, but if it's a close embrace tango community, then your item #4 (disconnected and doing her own thing) is the only one in your list that would be a factor, IMO.

    When dancing close embrace, I have no idea how the follower or I look. The main thing that I can tell, is how does she feel. Things like her posture and styling, really only matter when I'm watching her dance with someone else. If when dancing with me, she has a good embrace, waits for the lead, stays with me, and steps on the beat, the odds are very high that I'm going to enjoy the dance and ask her again at the next milonga.
  9. bastet

    bastet Active Member

    Having danced both BR and AT, I would point out that as I switched over I found it increasingly difficult to follow BR people because so many of the weight changes are built in to the patterns people learn.

    For example, take a basic rumba box, there are several weight changes in it that are taught as the basic pattern itself, and not particularly led in and of themselves.

    However, in AT, every single one of those weight changes would need to be explicitly led so the follower would understand that the leader is asking her to go with him, rather than say, he is switching to cross system for something and wants her to remain on the foot he left her.

    That would certainly make for a bad interchange between a typical ballroom dancer and AT dancer....
  10. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

    It's not that they can't figure out what the guy is trying to do. It's that they're too busy doing what they want to do. You're just going to have to trust me on this one.
  11. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

  12. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Not really - it can be very visible when a mistake happens in lead-and-follow. Even if you can't tell where the mistake came from (and you often can tell), a simple process of elimination should help. if the follower consistently makes mistakes with all her partners, that's a good indication.

    Plus, it's pretty obvious when a follower has fundamental technique issues - posture and so on.

    Well, "pretty obvious" is maybe an exaggeration - but certainly, someone with some experience should be able to spot this sort of thing without actually having to dance with them.

    In fact, sometimes it's easier to diagnose problems from looking at a couple, than it is being part of that couple.
  13. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Heh, I think I'll use a variation of that as a euphemism: "horizontal motives" :)

    Of course, guys are guys, we're simple animals and we get distracted by well-presented exteriors.

    For me, if I choose to dance with someone I don't know, I use the following criteria, in order of priority: (in bold because that part's important)
    1. Attitude
    2. Ability
    3. Appearance
  14. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    That, too, but also because they feel sorry for the lady, they are good friends with the lady, they were in the same beginners class 10 years ago and she was nice, she asks and they don't know how to decline, they want to sell her something, etc. etc.
  15. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Well, same applies to the guys to a large extent.
  16. Lilly_of_the_valley

    Lilly_of_the_valley Well-Known Member

    True. What I see here a lot, women accepting dances with undesirable partners because they feel bad rejecting someone, do not know how to decline, are afraid of looking rude, worry that turning someone down will affect their social image as a "nice person", their popularity.
    Argentinean women in general are not as socially conditioned to be "nice" to men. They are very good at saying "NO".
  17. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member

    The reason I see that women accept dances with less desirable partners is that there are about 10 women for every "desirable" leader. If you want to dance instead of sit all night, you dance with less desirable partners.

    Also, community size makes a difference. When you see the same 2 dozen people at every event, it becomes awkward to snub people.

    I've tried to adopt a philosophy that dancing with a variety of skill levels and habits improves my dancing. It takes experience and solid fundamentals to dance well and maintain proper technique with unskilled partners.

    I draw the line at pain though.
  18. LoveTango

    LoveTango Member

    I think it is true. I don't mind dancing with beginners (not all night though). I feel grateful that many leaders danced with me, when I just started. I would like to give it back to the community by supporting the new leaders.
  19. Madahlia

    Madahlia Member

    Thanks for telling it like it is, Zoopsia. It seems to me that many tango leaders choose to be unaware of these realities becoming smug and arrogant whilst followers get their confidence dented.

    I can only applaud your positive attitude! I'm afraid I'm really not managing this at the moment. I now go to milongas to socialise, not to dance, and am frustrated with the lack of challenge and opportunities to progress - and trying to hone and maintain my skills with leaders who may inadvertently be eroding them.

    I'm really happy to support new leaders, but when 75% of dancing time is spent doing this, it begins to wear thin, especially when leaders boast about always being able to dance with the best followers despite being relative novices.

    On the bright side, other forms of dance have become rewarding and fun again. So if I want a joyful and liberating dance experience where I can freely express myself I can go elsewhere rather than to a dull and restrictive milonga.
    AnnaN likes this.
  20. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    same is true for leaders becsaue there are ten women sitting there how do you know who is a quality dancer.

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