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"Vals" — Workshop in Nevada City:   September 2015


"The Three-Way Wind of Vals"

— Dancing Deeper into Tango's Triangle —

60-Minute Pre-Milonga Workshop

— with —

Debbie Edwards


Stephen Bauer

followed by Three Hours of Social Dancing

to "Golden Age" + Contemporary Tango Music


Hosted by  Tango Nevada County  at ...

Golden Empire Grange

— 11363 Grange Lane, Grass Valley —

Sunday — September 20, 2015 *

"Vals" Workshop:  12:00 noon - 1:00 pm   —    Milonga:  1:00 - 4:00 pm

All Levels Welcome — $15 / dancer

* Tango Nevada County milongas are usually on 4th Sundays —
this month, on 3rd Sunday with Guest DJ Stephen ...

(For more background on the kind of music you are likely to hear at 9/20's milonga with its mix of
"Golden Age" + Contemporary tango, please visit our More Music page ...)

More Information:

   Workshop Overview          Deb + Stephen           Past Quantum Tango Workshops

More About Vals + the Workshop

One of the three canonical "genres" of Tango music, vals is a graceful rhythm in 3/4 time — and true to its European origins, it retains a playful swirling quality that invites us to catch and flow with the sound of the music by dancing some circles of our own.

But unlike Old World forms with their predictable patterns, strict synchronization and standardized "steps," dancing vals in Tango is a paradigm of New World individuality and vitality. While the music of vals lends a continuous and regular shape to our wider shared soundscape, in Tango this common frame of reference serves us more as a backdrop and starting point for an investigation of movements, feelings and creative expression that are uniquely our own.

Moreover, like our fellow humans and other bipeds, most tango dancers have a matching pair of two legs + feet, an anatomical feature that not only helps us walk, run, skip and jump, it also makes for a most elegant and brilliant "fit" with both the common 4/4 rhythm of tango music, and the steady 2/4 heartbeat pulse of milonga.

Ideas and possibilities presented in threes can often be challenging — and provocative — in a binary world where
we are more familiar with arranging things in opposing pairs of twos ... up/down, in/out, true/false, on/off ...

Among the many challenges of dancing vals is how to artfully reconcile our encounter with these two contributing factors in ways that expand upon the potential of both aspects, and help us deepen our experience of the dance:

  • How do we reconcile the swirling regularity of music that is organized in threes ... with Tango's deeply improvisational nature, inevitably built upon a system of twos?"
  • Do we put our focus entirely on the strong beat and let the music cascade around us ... or can we explore the softer interbeats — the two's and three's of the one-two-three — and still keep pace with the flavor and pulse of the music?
  • And how do we connect these ideas to what we already know in ways that let us explore in the moment, share space with our neighbors, and keep in full communication with our partners?

In this 60-minute "Wind of Vals" workshop, we will take a closer look at these issues and more — uncovering some of the temporal possibilities in Tango, catching and expressing the playful energy of vals music, and coordinating our sensitivity and imagination with that of our partners in ways that help us float and soar on the dance floor.


For more on the sense and feeling of Tango vals, take a look at this segment of
a documentary on youtube about the late Pedro "Tete" Rusconi ...



For more on Learning + Dancing Tango in Nevada City + Grass Valley:

Tango Nevada County   (Facebook)


More About ...

Argentine Tango

More on the sensibility and practice of Argentine Tango, insights into its improvisation and creativity, and links to online resources for additional background and perspective ...


Debbie Edwards + Stephen Bauer


Stephen + Deb at Caltech Marathon 2014
— photo by Momo Smitt

Debbie + Stephen have been dancing + improvising together on Tango's social dance floor for more than 16 years, making their partnership one of the longest + most enduring on the West Coast.

Based in Ojai, California, Deb + Stephen have also been hosting and teaching locally since 2003, sharing Tango by way of their one-of-a-kind "All Levels" Workshops on 1st + 3rd Monday Nights — offering more than 300 sessions over the past 12 years — and in the unique "X" Session, an interactive exchange which is part of their weekly Tuesday Night Tango gathering in Ventura.

Unlike most learning opportunities, these forums present + explore the dance from a Principle Based perspective, with the aim of helping dancers find, discover, consider + engage Tango's many possibilities for themselves, on their own terms.

Over the years, Stephen + Deb have found that an approach like this allows and encourages each individual dancer + couple alike to create a more personal and potent Tango — one that is not only flexible, creative and technically rich, but also one that is built on a solid foundation of our essential shared humanity, leavened with mindful helping of awareness, attention, presence and non-judgment.

Fluent in many modes, methods, "styles" and aspects of Tango, Deb + Stephen are both skilled at both roles — leading + following. They are more likely to be found studying in class as students than operating in front of a class as "teachers." And in any given month, together, they typically spend a combined 60-plus hours on the social dance floor — more than 300 tandas a month — improvising Tango with each other and with a wide variety of partners, of all experience levels, in both roles, to all kinds of music, in all kinds of embraces, situations, venues + floor conditions.

In addition to their activities centered in Southern California, since 2009, Deb + Stephen have also helped nurture + mentor an emerging Tango community in Nevada City / Grass Valley.

For more on Debbie + Stephen as dancers, organizers + teachers, please follow this link ...


Past Workshops + Events in Nevada City and Reno

Rundowns on some of Debbie + Stephen's previous Tango offerings in the area:

•    Around the Floor in 80 Turns (Cycles, Circles + Syntax) — Nevada City, April 2015

•    "Tango Chef" (Kinetic Concoctions for Tastier Tango) — Nevada City, February 2015

•    The House That Milonga Built (Foundations + Innovations) — Nevada City, March 2013

•    A Mid-Winter's Tango Lab — Nevada City, December 2012

•    Introduction to Milonga — Nevada City, September 2012

•    Exploding Patterns - Your Tango Beyond the Numbers — Nevada City, July 2012

•    A Mid-Winter's Tango Lab — Nevada City, December 2011

•    Around the World in 180° - Tango's Media Vuelta — Nevada City, November 2011

•    Turning on a Dime - Compact Rotations in Vals — Reno, Nevada, November 2011

•    Ochofinity + Turnado #759 (A Dynamic Turn to the Right) — Nevada City, July 2011

•    Zero to Tango in 30 Minutes + Supervised Práctica — Nevada City, March 2011

•    Zero to Tango in 30 Minutes + Supervised Práctica — Nevada City, December 2010

•    Tango Exploratorium - Workshops & SYRCL Fundraiser — Nevada City, Sept. 2009

•    Tango Exploratorium - Workshops — Grass Valley/Nevada City, July 2009


Bandoneon - graphic

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