If you’ve never taken private tango classes, you might (rightly) be wondering what the fuss is all about. So here’s a quick overview of why private classes are great to help you develop your tango further (and quicker).
It’s easier to learn tango when you dance with an experienced partner
You might already know this, but in the old days, there was no such thing as tango classes. Dancers used to share with one another what they knew. Apparently, gentlemen would first start to follow. Once they could follow well enough, they would start leading another gentleman before being able to go to a milonga to dance with ladies.
This means that, basically, traditionally, there never were two complete beginners learning together. There was always someone who knew more who would mentor someone who knew less.
Nowadays, tango group classes are a great way to learn. They give tango learners the opportunity to see a variety of steps or concepts, and dance with a variety of partners, hence helping everyone develop well-rounded leading or following skills.
However, when you take a private tango class, you can make sure that you are taking good habits by learning with someone who is more advanced than you and by getting personalised feedback about your dancing.
You can develop a more subtle approach to tango
Tango is like a conversation. When two beginners dance together, it’s like two people trying to have a conversation in a busy pub on a Thursday night. No, make it a Friday night…. They have to SHOUT!
That means the leader might have to use a stronger lead to get his meaning across, and the follower might rely more on her partner than she should.
When dancing with a trained instructor, you can learn to introduce more subtlety into your leading or following, hence improving the quality and enjoyment of your tango dancing.
Neither too fast, not too slow
In a group class, the pace is dictated by group dynamics, whilst in a private class, things can go as slowly or as quickly as you want.
Some people find virtue in going over the same exercise or step quite a few times, whilst others would rather see it just once because they go away and practice it at home or in milongas.
One of the other virtues of private classes is that they’ll run at your own pace.
Just the right mix
What kind of breakfast person are you? Cereals? Croissants (good for you if you can pull that one off every day and retain a human shape! I can’t). Full English breakfast? Tostadas with dulce de leche? Or, come on, you know you want it: an alfajor and a cafe cortado? And that’s ok because we’re all different!
When learning a new skill, it’s the same thing. Some people find it difficult to hear the tango beat, others find the posture quite challenging, whilst others might struggle to get into the leader or follower mindset.
For this reason, private tango tuition is great as it lets you work especially on what you need most, whether it’s technique, musicality, repertoire…
Get feedback from within
In a group class, you’ll mostly be getting feedback about tango “from without”, that means about how your tango looks. This feedback may be about posture, technique, musicality, execution of the steps…
In a private lesson however, because you dance with your instructor, you’ll mostly be getting feedback “from within”, that means about how your tango feels.
By getting both kinds of feedback, you’ll make sure you can develop your tango both from within and from without, so that you become great to watch and great to dance with. The ultimate tango grail!
Nati y Bruno