Feb 032017

There are lots of ways to be beautiful and elegant as a Revel, and you should find your own special style…. These are a few of Vio’s favorites:

Make a Beautiful Projection

The only difference between ballet and tango projection/tendu, is that in tango the free leg is relaxed with the knees touching, slightly nested so that the free leg’s knee is either a little in front or behind the base leg. We always transfer weight onto an externally rotated projected foot so that the leg muscles will be in the optimum position for smooth and supple movement.

Point Your Toes when in the air.

This has gone out of fashion, but I still like it. To point your foot in a tango shoe is harder work than pointing it in a ballet shoe, so we have to be strong!

Here are some videos with exercises:

In front steps, Transfer to a pointed Toe
When I started dancing, I was taught to transfer weight in a front step first to the toe. Then later I was taught heel-first. Looking at my videos, I felt I was showing the heel too much, and I have tried to reduce it, keeping the toes pointed during the projection until the last possible moment, and then dropping the heel only when necessary.
I have also come to question the heel-first theory. There are some steps when it is absolutely necessary such as when there is a lot of force or a very huge step. And sometimes it doesn’t fit the expression of the music. But even in medium-sized steps (40-50cm), it is possible to do it.

The hard work of the base leg makes it possible to transfer directly to the free leg’s toes. There are three actions that I do with my old base leg: [1] maintain hip flexion [2] knee extension (makes it easier, but not necessary) [3] ankle extension, which means that I will methodically go from a flat foot, to demi-point (arching the middle of the foot while keeping the ball of the foot on the floor), to full point (contracting the toes and the arch and fully extending the ankle to complete the transfer of weight).

There are different issues for each leg, as always caused by the embrace. When You are stepping from right to left, you are often in a front ocho and the mark is pushing on your back. You have to use extra hip flexion in order to maintain your base long enough to move in the way you want. When you are taking a front step from left to right, you are moving into the closed side of the embrace, and you must work extra hard to externally rotate your base leg so that the muscles can work.

If it is a very small step ≤20cm, you will find it is much more comfortable to step toe-first anyway.
Extended knees

Our legs look beautiful when we extend the knee fully early in every projection.

In addition, it looks sexy in front and side steps to extend the base leg’s knee as early as possible in the transfer.

 3 February 2017