Quantum Tango Home


Home | "Equinox" | Ojai / Monday | Ventura / Tuesday | Nevada City | Workshops |  | Resources | Contact



Workshop in Ojai:  March 2018


 Coming to Ojai ...

Gustavo Benzecry Sabá & María Olivera

from Buenos Aires —

"The Dynamic Embrace"

— How Our Touch Creates the Dance —

— A 90-Minute Workshop + Supervised Práctica —

Monday - March 19, 2018 in the Gallery at the Ojai Art Center

Workshop with Gustavo & María:  "The Dynamic Embrace"

The story ...

is told of a younger dancer, eager to make his way deeper into the mysteries of Tango, who asks an older milonguero about his favorite part of the dance:

Was it a particular situation or idea, like a special turn or certain boleo ... or was it more about the quality of the movement itself, "how" we walk ... or maybe something about the music, and all the many memories and feelings it evokes?

"No," says the older man:

"For me, the high point of our dance is that moment when we finally reach out and touch for the very first time. Everything that follows — all the music and the wonderful movements we make together? All of that is just delicious aftermath ..."

"Connection" vs. Embrace

Often referred to as "the connection," it turns out that this slender mechanical word scarcely begins to describe the richness, subtlety and nuance of Tango's embrace.

As the old milonguero suggested, mere physical contact alone is not enough:  What matters is the threshold we cross together — and, in turn, the deeper and far more resonant layers of what this choice implies and allows:

In the moment of our touch, we go from being two separate people to becoming partners in a whole new entity, The Couple —

Old barriers fall and familiar boundaries begin to blur as we open ourselves to trust and relationship ... agree to engage, interact, explore ... lean forward into possibiltiies ... then step together toward the unknown.

By way of metaphor, a plug that's "connected" to a wall socket is meaningless ... unless there is also a current present, that vital ebb and flow of electricity — and — something on the other end of the wire — a lamp, a fan, a radio — which can not only accept this unseen power, but transform it in ways that are at once tangible, useful, elegant, and profound.

Likewise in Tango:  The key to our touch is how such a simple gesture allows this "divine spark" to rise and leap between two bodies — to animate the relationship, turn us into partners, and conjure The Couple into being.

The Workshop:  "The Dynamic Embrace"

On March 19 in Ojai, guest artists Gustavo Benzecry Sabá & María Olivera invite us deeper into these mysteries by helping us consider + explore a range of topics + issues related to Tango's "Dynamic Embrace," such as:

  • how to send and receive / give and take on the bi-directional, "two-way" channel of the embrace ...
  • how our embrace can move, shift, breathe and hinge — elegantly adapting our touch to Tango's ever-changing possibilities and circumstances ...
  • how various inefficiencies and distortions can arise — how we can notice what's happening, understand the consequences, then adjust and respond to the developing situation ...
  • how to organize and make use of the many ways we can touch and make contact with our partner — hand, arm, back, chest, head, cheek, chin, temple ...
  • how to manage the different ways we might "fit together" with a variety of partners — including those that are taller, shorter, wider, slender, more flexible, and less so ...
  • how best to keep our Tango embrace tender, supple and alive ... rather than becoming stiff, rigid or awkward, like ballroom's notorious "frame" ...
  • how we can let our embrace flow between closer and more open relationships to create a flexible and responsive "elastic embrace" ...
  • how to approach and incorporate the idea of entrega as we explore ever deeper layers of surrender and expressiveness — with our partner, with the music, and with Tango's myriad possibilities ...

After "The Dynamic Embrace" workshop, please stay on as Gustavo & María supervise the Guided Práctica, and then join us for a special extended edition of our long-running Monday Night milonga, Ojai's "Tango Incident."


It's not the pen; it's
the words — that flow from poet
to the open page ...

More Information:

            Workshop Overview      Bio for Gustavo & María     

More Gustavo & María Links + Video      Past Quantum Tango Workshops  

Overview:  Workshop with Gustavo & María



Monday — March 19, 2018



Ojai Art Center - in the Gallery - 113 S. Montgomery, Ojai



7:00 - 8:30 p.m. - an Extended 90-minute Session

Supervised Práctica: 


8:30 - 9:00 p.m. — following the Workshop  ...

"Tango Incident":


9:00 - 10:30 p.m. — Ojai's renowned milonga



$25 / Dancer for this Special Workshop + Práctica


        2-for-1 / Students with I.D. ...


        "Tango Incident" only — by donation

All Levels Workshop

— Newer + More Experienced Dancers Both Welcome —

Click here for Driving Directions - and - more about Monday Night Tango in Ojai ...

Coming to Ojai for an overnight ...?  Click here for info on local accommodations.


More About Gustavo & María

Gustavo & María - on the social dance floor

Celebrated social dancers and teachers, Gustavo Benzecry Sabá & María Olivera are from Buenos Aires.

Gustavo started dancing in the late ‘90s, studying with both milongueros and stage performers. In 2003 he met María and they started teaching together at the famous Salón Canning, in Buenos Aires.*

Their teaching method is both precise and gradual. Because of this, they’re among the most popular teachers. They regularly teach workshops in their home town and at international festival and events. Their kindness and good sense of humor make the learning very effective for students. Gustavo is patient and reflective, and María brings dynamism and clarity in the concepts they present and explore.

As teachers and dancers they’ve been touring Europe and America since 2006, taking part in many international events. Gustavo stands out for his elegance, creativity and musicality, and María for her quick adornments and her musical precision.

Together they also work hard on promoting the Tango as a culture. Gustavo has written several books — including Embracing Tango, Tango FAQs, a New Glossary of tango terms (with a DVD to illustrate), and most recently, a history of the dance, Quest for the Embrace: 1800 - 1983. With María they’ve also produced instructional DVDs on technique for leaders and followers, as well as a documentary film on the history of the dance in the 1940’s and 50’s that they screen for educational purposes.

* Salón Canning (Milonga Parakultural) in Palermo is one of the most iconic Tango venues in Buenos Aires. Read more about it here:  in English, in Spanish, on Facebook ...

Links to More About Gustavo & María...

Gustavo & María's Website

    More background, bio, links, video, books, DVDs ...

Workshops in San Pedro

    Gustavo & María will also be in residence in the L.A.
    area March 13 - 24 at Tango San Pedro, offering a
    series of workshops & events ...

Buenos Aires Tango Immersion

    Gustavo & María's annual tour to "Tango Mecca"
    — and their hometown — Buenos Aires ... 10 days
    of intensive workshops, milonga outings, cultural
    excursions & more — next tour:  December 2018

Video of their Dancing

•   Tango — at Salón Canning, Buenos Aires, 2016

•   Milonga — at ValenTango in Portland, 2018

•   Vals — in Saarbrücken, Germany, 2017

Map + Driving Directions

For the "Dynamic Embrace" Workshop with Gustavo & María in Ojai:

Map to Ojai Art Center — 113 South Montgomery, Ojai — from Google Maps ...

  • From US 101 in Ventura, take CA 33 north toward Ojai.
  • Keep going straight as CA 150 joins CA 33, then swings east to take you into Ojai. Stay on CA 150.
  • The "center of town" is the stop light at Signal Street — you'll see the Post Office on the SE corner, with its iconic bell tower.
  • For the Art Center:  Continue east approximately 0.1 miles, past Libbey Park, and turn right/south onto South Montgomery — the Art Center is half a block down, on your right ...
  • Come in the front door and follow the music — we will be in the Gallery at the end of the hall ... 1,400 square feet, with a recently refinished maple floor from the 1930s

Exterior — Ojai Art Center — 113 South Montgomery, Ojai

Interior — Dance Space in the Gallery at the Ojai Art Center

Past Quantum Tango Workshops & Events with Visiting Dancers

•    Folias Tango — Playing "Live" for Dancers at Grapes & Hops — June 2017

•    Brigitta Winkler — "Polarity + Presence" — April 2017

•    "La Valle Rosada" - Ojai Women's Tango Weekend with Brigitta & Deb — March 2017

•    Joaquín Amenábar — "Melody as a Rhythmic Element" + "Syncopation in Tango" — July 2016

•    Folias Tango — "Rhythmic Structures" - Riding the Waves in the Music — June 2016

•    Tomás Corbalán + Yamila Ivonne — Tango Lab: "Dynamics" + "Silence" — May 2016

•    Brigitta Winkler — Tango Lab: "Intimacy" — March 2016

•    Muma Valino — Tango Lab: "La Esencia" of Ricardo Vidort — October 2015

•    Joaquín Amenábar — "Essential Units of Tango Rhythm" + "Melody in Tango" — July 2015

•    Virginia Pandolfi — Tango Lab: "Follower's Technique" — June 2015

•    Folias Tango — "Mapping the Tango" - Phrase Structure + Form — June 2015

•    Brigitta Winkler — "Flirty Vals" — March 2015

•    Momo Smitt — "Clean, Clear, Crisp, Rhythmic" + "Hold Me Tight, Let Me Go" — May 2014

•    Daniel Trenner — Tango Lab:  "Principles of Letting + Flowing" — March 2014

•    Brigitta Winkler — "INTER:  Act / Sect / Weave / Relate" — February 2014

•    Leonel Chen + Florencia Han — "Milonga:  Fast + Small" — November 2013

•    Daniel Trenner — Tango Lab: "Iconic Roles - The Lead + Follow Dynamic" — March 2013

•    Felipe Martinez — "Cross-System Gems" — September 2012

•    Sharna Fabiano — "Close Embrace of the Third Kind" — September 2011

•    Folias Tango Quartet & Avik Basu — "Tango Music:  Its Secrets Revealed" — August 2010

•    Daniel Trenner — "Milonga:  Traditional Perspectives & Tráspie" — May 2009

•    Sabine Zubarik — "Milonga for Beginners" — April 2009

•    Andrés Amarilla + Meredith Klein — Mulitple Workshops — October 2007   (pdf)

•    Andrés Amarilla : Extended Residency — January / February / March 2007   (pdf)

•    Andrés Amarilla + Meredith Klein — Tango Lab: "Alternative Embrace" — May 2006

•    Andrés Amarilla + Meredith Klein — Multiple Workshops — May / June 2006   (pdf)

•    Andrés Amarilla + Meredith Klein — Tango Lab Intensive: "Nuevo" — February 2006


Bandoneon - graphic

Home | "Equinox" | Ojai / Monday | Ventura / Tuesday | Nevada City | Workshops | Resources | Contact


Copyright © 2009 - 2018 by Stephen Bauer  |  Share Feedback about the Website