Last February 14th we were inadvertently at the eve of a singular year that imposed changes, disruptions in personal times and social space, labor challenges, limitations everywhere but also new perspectives, teachings and blessings. Tango, and its makers, adapted, reinvented itself, sustained itself, developed new formats and is still alive and vigorous – there is no Covid to get in its way. Today, February 14th 2021, we have gained perspective, poise and flexibility.
Milonga spoke with teachers Eugenia Martínez and Cristian Taffarello about their experiences and reflections on their work.
Belén: How did you reinvent yourselves last year?
Eugenia: Well… you had to adapt, be flexible and learn to use new work tools. And, above all, you had to get out of the comfort zone! I started with women’s technique group classes through Zoom. Luckily, the group of girls stayed the whole year with a good amount of students that connected with a lot of desire to work. I also started a video class project with a friend who works in film. I filmed 30 classes with a super professional format, thanks to her. I also added a lot of private classes, all virtual, both with Argentinian students and others who live outside the country.
Cristian: First of all, I adapted the classes, the contents, to be able to carry them out virtually, taking into account my personal situation and that of most of the students, who are alone at home.
Belén: As tango workers, what was the biggest challenge the pandemic brought about?
Eugenia: The biggest challenge was to build new learning strategies that would adapt to this new virtual format. Trying to transmit concepts without the possibility of embracing or intervening with the body was definitely hard. The word became central to sustain the class. I also included elements such as cushions, brooms, chairs, to interact with them and transmit some concepts. But I think the most important thing was to understand what these encounters with the students meant, which was much more than learning a technique or a step. It was about connecting, sharing, being present, seeing each other’s eyes, even if only through a screen. And we had to make room for that too.
Cristian: In my case, to give continuity to the spaces that I was carrying out before the beginning of the pandemic (classes and milonga), making sure that the students of the classes and the tango community of Melodía de Arrabal Milonga had the possibility to continue meeting in their places of belonging, giving at the same time to the Tango workers the possibility to continue working.
Belén: What response do you get from the students/audience to the face-to-face proposals?
Eugenia: The students come to class with immense joy. Grateful to find real meeting spaces but with all the necessary care. The classes are more emotional, I think. One can see despite the chinstrap those eyes shining with pleasure.
Cristian: In general the response is one of joy and gratitude for continuing to bet on Tango and giving them the possibility of doing what makes them happy at this particular moment. They respect, value and emphasize the fact of carrying out the activities in a responsible way.
Belén: Euge and Cristian, what makes you feel grateful and fulfilled this February 14th?
Eugenia: For my part I feel grateful that Cristian has invited me these months to his space and share these classes with him. He, besides being a great person, is a great teacher, very loved by his students and super committed to the task. Planning these classes together is already enriching because the exchange that takes place is very nice. And when it comes to teaching the class everything flows very naturally, as if we had worked together for many years, I am really enjoying it!
Cristian: Doing what I’m passionate about at this difficult time for Tango, and being surrounded by people I love and with whom I enjoy every moment shared, is a huge blessing for me!
Happy Valentine’s Day to those who ignite and share with others their passion for Tango!
Other sites you may find interesting to explore
Palermonline. | On Line en Palermo desde 1999.
Palermo Tour. | Turismo en Palermo.
Palermo Noticias. | Barrio de Palermo.
Noticias Recoleta | Recoleta a fondo.
Belgrano News. | Belgrano mucho más que un Barrio.
Colegiales Noticias | Colegiales. El barrio que crece.
Chaca News | Chacarita. Un sentimiento.
Noticias Abasto | Abasto, historia y futuro.
e Woman | Mujer Verde.
Tech News | Lo último en Tecnología.
Milonga | Tango, Milonga y Vals.
Noticias Capital | Noticias de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires.
Instagram Barrio de Palermo | Instagram Palermo Noticias.
Instagram Barrio de Colegiales | Instagram Colegiales Noticias.
Belén: ¿Qué respuesta ven de parte de los alumnos/ el público a las propuestas presenciales?
Eugenia:Los alumnos llegan a la clase con una alegría inmensa. Agradecidos de encontrar espacios de encuentro real pero con todos los cuidados necesarios. Las clases son más emotivas, creo. Uno puede ver a pesar del barbijo esos ojos que brillan de placer.
Cristian: En general la respuesta es de alegría y agradecimiento por seguir apostando al Tango y darles la posibilidad de hacer lo que les da felicidad en este momento tan particular. Respetan, valoran y destacan el hecho de llevar adelante las actividades de manera responsable.
Belén: Euge y Cristian, ¿qué los hace sentir agradecidos y plenos este 14 de febrero?
Eugenia: Por mi parte me siento agradecida de que Cristian me haya invitado estos meses a su espacio y compartir estas clases con él. Él, además de ser una gran persona, es un gran maestro, muy querido por sus alumnos y súper comprometido con la tarea. Planificar juntos estas clases ya de por sí es enriquecedor porque el intercambio que se da es muy lindo. Y a la hora de dar la clase todo fluye muy natural, como si hubiéramos trabajado juntos muchos años.¡Lo estoy disfrutando mucho!
Cristian: Hacer lo que me apasiona en este momento tan difícil para la actividad Tango, y estar rodeado de personas que quiero y con las que disfruto cada momento compartido ¡es para mí una bendición enorme!
¡Feliz día de los enamorados a quienes encienden y comparten con otros su pasión por el tango!