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We had the pleasure of teaching and performing in the New Forest last weekend.

There, in a little village hall in the most beautiful setting (picture thatched cottages and horses roaming across the country roads), you’ll discover something quite unexpected: a perfect tango studio - complete with tango paintings on the wall and a grand piano. Steve and Debbie Morall have created a wonderful environment for tango lovers to immerse themselves in tango in the many events they organise. That’s right Londoners, there are places to learn tango far away from the Big Smoke!

We had a very rewarding weekend meeting new people (and re-connecting with others we knew already), sharing our ideas and watching them discover new angles for their dance.

We were really happy to receive this feedback from our visit:

“What a marvellous weekend! David and Kim are both fabulous dancers and teachers and we loved every minute of it. We both feel we have made progress and have things to practise so we can improve. This is certainly amongst our favourite weekends! We have been left motivated and inspired for both the dance and our own progress within it.”

“David and Kim have something very special to offer and we look forward to our next opportunity to experience their teaching.”

“What a wonderful weekend. David & Kim introduced a variety of concepts in a very structured and creative manner. They cleverly built on aspects covered during the previous sessions leaving all who participated feeling they had 'moved on' and made significant progress. Most impressive was their involvement in each individual taking the time to give focused practical advice and clear demonstrations. To top it all a wonderful weekend of dancing as well during the practicas and milongas thank you!"

"David & Kim's teaching style was excellent and lots of fun, with a marvellous balance between group and individual instruction. It was also a breathtaking delight to watch them dance - one of those rare moments when you know you are in the presence of masters.”

Thank you Bramshaw! We hope to visit you again very soon!

This gorgeous video popped up on my Facebook News Feed this morning and it got me thinking.

You’re probably wondering what does a video of three little girls dancing to Aretha Franklin have to do with tango? Well, then you should know that we tango dancers can find a relationship to tango in just about anything!

The camera constantly zooms in on Johanna in the middle. Johanna’s mum or dad filming? Or a random audience member who just can’t take their eyes off Johanna. Somehow that seems just as probable.

The two adorable little girls to the left and right of Johanna sweetly show the moves they learnt in dance class but Johanna really gives it some sass, unleashing her inner-Aretha!

Dancers are continually walking a very delicate tight rope between working on their technique and letting the dance flow. I personally take great pleasure in exploring and developing technique, and don’t see it as a chore. But if I’m constantly thinking of technique when I dance there will always be something missing - I will always be holding something back and I will be cutting off the creative life force of my dance.

Whether we dance tap, ballet, flamenco or tango, we want our dance to be more than the sum total of its parts. We need to own our movements.

When I watch others dance, I love to see precision, but equally technical excellence without expression is meaningless. That is what sets dance apart from other physical activities. Give me a little bit of imperfection - “mugre” (dirt) as the Argentines say - but transmit what you feel when you dance.

Technique is for the class, for the drills, for the practice time. But when you go out to dance in the milonga, technique shouldn’t be anything more than a background track in your mind. In the foreground, it is time to dance, and by that I mean really *dance*.

Where did Johanna get her attitude from? You get the feeling it wasn’t her dance class! You could say it is easier for a child, yet to develop inhibitions, to let herself go. Or that some people are born with a natural ability. Both of these things may be true, but my personal belief is that if you love tango (and I assume you do if you are reading this blog) then you already feel it, and you simply need to allow that natural feeling to flow when you dance.

So next time you go out and dance take a leaf out of Johanna's book and release your inner tanguero!

It’s hard to believe that eight years can pass so quickly! But last week we celebrated Tango Movement’s 8th Anniversary in London.

On 1st June 2007, David and I arrived in London from Buenos Aires and set up Tango Movement. What followed exceeded all our expectations and we’ve had a wonderful eight years. We’re very grateful for all the fantastic people we’ve met - both students and friends - without whom the journey would have been very different.

Last week we celebrated in every class with chocolate cake and post-class drinks. The festivities culminated on Saturday night with our Student Show at the UK Tango Championship. It was great to see so many of you turn out to support our students who put in so much hard work into their routine. They were brilliant and we are very proud of them. And what a great Festival! We hope you enjoyed dancing the night away as much as we did!

Watch the video of our amazing students in action here:

Now we just have to wait for 26th July when we will have our Big Anniversary Party on the Thames to celebrate.

Here are some more photos of last week's festivities:

Celebrating in our Wednesday Improvers Class

Post-Class Drinks

Celebrating in our Friday Beginners Class

Celebrating on our Saturday Course

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