By Isidro Aguirre.
Milonga style was born in Buenos Aires from the Milonga’s narrowness (space restriction and massive participation of those who practiced it) in the mid 1900s, and it distinguishes itself due to the stacked position in which the couple dances, position in which those who are dancing constantly lean on each other as if they were only one body.
There is no leaning of the arms nor of the head, and yet the connexion of the upper part of their bodies must be kept at all times, including the torso. Even when they take turns or dance the famous “eight figure” the couple holds a “lightless hug” (without excessive precision) and the connexion on the upper part of the body.
In Milonga Tango, the dancers must keep an exceptional balance while both dance as if they were about to fall forward, especially the woman. Each of them is responsible for his or her own balance, and, simultaneously, they depend on each other to avoid falling to the ground. This type of balance gives a sense of fluidity called “cadence” in the tango world.
Space restriction accentuates the dancers’ creativity and tightens the couple’s relationship. Off beats, half beats and syncopes are used as contrapasso and corridas, for it’s an efficient way of occupying small spaces and of following the melody assembled on the rhythm. Pauses are active because the continuous tempo is accentuated and intimately breathed, even though there is no movement throughout space. These are important resources given the fact that they colour the dance.
Because the dancers lean on each other and can hear each other’s heartbeat, because of the hugging and the harmonious bodies dancing in the sentimental and passionate connexion that this musical genre transmits, this style, which is musically fast, is still very intimate and seductive.