Intersectional workshops

Flying milonguero: class and gender in the origins of tango

This workshop dives into the history of tango to look for its genealogy in the streets of the ports of Buenos Aires and Montevideo, performing the fights and seductions of the ungovernable rapidly growing cities at the beginning of the 20th century. Embodying this history we will progress in the history of tango dancing to incorporate the different influences it gathered and to show how class and gender shaped tango yesterday as well as they do today. It intends to show that politics are a constitutive part of the movement itself, making visible the contribution of marginalized social groups as poor migrants, people of color, prostitutes, as well as the processes of whitening, gentrification, and nationalization. 

Intersectional tango, black roots of tango and whitening processes in technique

This workshop traces a genealogy in the movements of tango, looking for its black roots based on ethnomusicological and ethnodancelogical research, and describing the process which led to the whitening of these roots through so-called professionalization and cultural appropriation during the nationalization of tango phase. It’s aimed for anyone interested in tango or cultural history, and it’s especially pertinent for intermediate and advanced tango dancers who can strongly feel these cultural influences functioning in their bodies. 

Gender roles and gender identity workshops

Unrolling partner dance

The assumption of roles in popular partner dance is prejudice to be overcome. Today, we know that there’s no need to use the fixed roles of following and leading to dance any partnered dance. This assumption comes from a social construction about gender roles and it is not based on any technical impossibility of dancing differently. What do we have instead? We need to deepen in the practice of active listening or connection, where we find the essence of partnered dance itself. This skill can be developed through simple exercises brung from contact improvisation, where roles have never existed and can be applied to any form of popular partnered dances. 

No Role Tango: Roles dilution

No role tango is an underdeveloped queer tango technique where the roles of movement no more exist. Since the beginning of my tango practice, I’ve been pursuing the dilution of roles as part of my political queer purposes in the practice of tango. Roles dilution also means melting the dancing couple to follow the true flow of the music. In this workshop, we research frontal and curved momentum in the context of tango embrace, and in the psychological states of mind, we need to practice to train ourselves to dance out of dancing roles, which also mean reprograming ourselves beyond gendered stereotypes about movement. Moreover, the information given by the music contributes to a complex approach for intermediate and advanced tango dancers, whose chances to dance in unrolled trio with the music increase. We look for an unrolled movement that is still based in bodies fusion, shared axis and milonguero style. 

The embodiment of masculinity and femininity through tango posture and attitudes

This workshop aims to analyze how tango posture and attitudes prescribe differences for the leader’s and the follower’s roles. It also focuses on how these differences are depicted as masculinity and femininity, and then to relate that to the different approaches of queer tango towards traditional tango endorsements of femininity and masculinity/leadership and followership. The workshop will introduce the participant to two different approaches: the ungendered one, by which queer tango dancers try to neutralize the power forces inscribed in the ideas of “leading” and “following”, and the performative one, by which queer tango dancers deepen the symbolic masculinity and femininity inscribed in dancing roles. In the end, a fusion of both perspectives will be proposed, showing how followership and leadership, symbolically masculine and feminine adjectives and aspects are necessary to describe each of the roles.

 Non-binary tango

 Non-binary tango comes from my personal experience and the identity issues I’m struggling with right now. In the last 10 years, I have equally developed my practice of dual-role tango and no-role tango dancing, creating a queer methodology for teaching tango and a political approach to this technique of paired movement. Beyond detaching tango roles from gender assumptions and unrolling the movement itself, there’s still a body in the search for its own identity as a human being. In this workshop, we will focus on the subtle aspects of tango poetics and movement practice which link ourselves to our own experience of identity, and how it is mediated through our embodied tango practice. I have developed several workshops as Embodying femininity and masculinity through tango posture and attitudesThe walking androgyne or Corpo-reality related to these topics. Non-binary tango is my most personal approach, specifically aimed for queer tango dancers of any kind of experience, orientation, and identity

Queer Tango, Performative practices and destabilization of the sex-gender system

This workshop shows queer tango as a queer performative practice through which it is possible to address relevant philosophical questions to queer theory and practice, as Where does my body begin? What is the end of my body? as well as relational politics questions such as ¿is it any different being alone than being with others? Which is the difference between one body and two bodies? Can two bodies be one body? Through simple exercises of walking and partnered movement, accessible to anybody, we will embody these questions and relate them to the disassembling of gender stereotypes and the critic of extremist individualism, and dualistic metaphysics. 

 Beyond consent: Pansensuality before gender

 The movement patterns we acquire in the society we live in share two characteristics: they privilege standing and seated positions; and they are shaped by gendered movement styles which we try, fail, or refuse to adhere to. This compulsory development has a history we all embody. Queerness and contact improvisation constitute critiques of these limitations on human development. They propose a path to rebuild this history by offering another embodiment that takes over those narratives and customs. Conscious dance and gender practitioners know that we face conflict and limitations due to the inscription of this body history in ourselves. We cannot just become the raw material for a new approach, but we can try to repattern ourselves through shared reflection and continuous practice.

This workshop aims to lead us through the early history of our movement and pre-verbal development, trying to recall how we thought and moved in our early childhood. It aims to recuperate a pansensuality not yet mediated by cisheteropatriarchal norms, and a movement not separated from curiosity, objects, and others

The Queer Touch, researching between movement and touch

The Queer Touch researches about power relations and freedom through movement and touch, exploring bodies beyond identity, social expectations on gender, deepening in how movement and touch can help us understand our body history, our relationships with other bodies, and our purely physical being. The Queer Touch reflects on the childhood socialization experiences of queer people as a source to embody how we got used to the power relations we now live as normal. Secondly, it tries to go beyond this human body history in search of the sensation of our bodies as animals, and things, looking for a posthuman approach which helps us to feel detached from what we have built as our stable identity. 

Queering contact: vulnerability and mutual support

Queering contact implies the idea of putting vulnerability at the center of movement practice. A queer perspective on contact improvisation deals with the core values of contact improvisation and their chances of realization among the contact impro international community. Vulnerability is a powerful political concept which can help us to understand and embody, not only the diversities and differences that draw different body landscapes and that encourage a commitment with the views of those who are publicly perceives as more vulnerable, but also trace specific qualities of movement and mutual support as physical realizations of those views and values.