Hello, we’re Nati and Bruno!
We are really excited to share with you our passion for tango and we’ll do our utmost to make you shine on the dance floor. If you’re anything like us, you’ll fall in love with tango in no time.
The bug really bit me early…
I started dancing when I was 5, when my parents enrolled me at a local dance school. My first steps as a dancer were incidentally my teacher’s first steps as an instructor and naturally, we grew together in our craft and as people for 15 years (within which time I grew considerably in height too!). I started with ballet and then went on to study modern and contemporary dance, more specifically Martha Graham’s technique, which I loved.
“You are geographically impaired!”
That’s what a close friend told me once.
Somehow, I was born with a travel bug which pushed me to relocate to Denmark, then to the US, and finally to Japan. It is in the country of the rising sun and more specifically in Tokyo that I fell in love not only with sashimi but also with tango – some 15 years ago (for those surprised, Japan is actually BIG on tango and gave birth to world champions).
Our tango journey together
Bruno and I both started Argentine tango around 1999, at first for fun, then for our wedding first dance. What kept us going back for more was our enjoyment of the classes and because we liked socialising with our tango friends.
After our first trip to Buenos Aires, we carried on tango out of sheer addiction: to the music, to the embrace, to the fascinating tango culture, to the beauty of the dance and the emphasis on the ‘here and now’.
We started our tango training in Japan (as odd as that seems, although tango is actually very popular over there) with Juan Rios, an Argentine Maestro; then in Europe and Buenos Aires, where we were blessed to be trained by truly generous teachers such as the 2008 tango world champions Daniel Nacucchio and Cristina Sosa, Lorena Ermocida, Maria Angeles Rodriguez and old school milongeros like Chiche.
Innovation is not limited to high tech – it happens in tango too!
We grew together as dancers, having been lucky enough to learn from amazing maestros. After one our trips to Buenos Aires, we started thinking of using outside influences and bringing new ideas to tango instruction. This is how we came up with our teaching methodology:
We organise our classes around nine Tango Dimensions™, a framework we developed to make concepts easy to understand and help you find your own style of dancing. We plan each class carefully so that you develop the skills necessary to become a great dancer and enjoy social dancing: build your repertoire of steps, strengthen your technique and develop your musicality. In class, and on our blog, we also talk a lot about tango culture and history.
Long step sequences are fine in class but are hard to use in a milonga – especially if you want to listen to the music and play it nice on the dance floor. This led us to breaking sequences into individual steps and focusing our classes on certain concepts or energies rather than on sequences. We’ve observed it was easier for students to learn and remember them so that they could then create their own sequences.
A class is but once a week (more if you’re addicted of course), but it’s easy to forget between one class and the next. This is why we thought about class notes and videos – they make students’ life easier and they’re a good step by step reference.
Tango movements just do not feel natural at first and they take time to perfect, also tango is so deep that there’s always something new to learn. For this reason, it can be easy to loose track of what has been achieved. We thought a self assessment card would help keep track of student’s progress. It’s always nice to be patted on the back or to pat oneself on the back!
Continuous effort is always better than one off attempts, so we incorporated ‘continuous learning’ which really is homework but complete voluntary. If only that had been the case with maths at school!