What to look for in Evan Lysacek’s Argentine Tango

Ballroom dancer Katrina Burch sat down with Figure Skaters Online to explain the basics of the Argentine Tango, which is the dance that Olympic Champion Evan Lysacek and partner Anna Trebunskaya will be performing on tonight’s episode of Dancing with the Stars. Team Evanna is contesting with five other couples, who are performing the cha cha or the Argentine Tango.

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The Argentine Tango is very similar to the Tango. The major difference is the hold. AT is rarely danced is “Frame”. Also, unlike Standard/Smooth tango, AT is heavy on improv and not really knowing the steps.  As well as, AT basic is done in counts of 8 rather than the “T-A-N-G-O” that Standard/Smooth is done to. AT is more complicated and more emitional and a true character dance.

It’s origins are that of Tango’s but it kept itself… in the gutter so to speak. This is “the people’s dance”. There are several different types of AT and as much as I don’t like to use it, Wikipedia has a good write up about them as well as more moves)

What to look for:
– Sex appeal. This dance, unlike its cousin will be more sexy
– Caminata’s (“Walk” in spanish) which are a walking movement similar to a promenade
– Ocho – a figure-8 traced by the follower’s feet when moving forward or backward (One of my favorite moves)
– Fanning. Similar to that of an Ocho, it’s usually the follow who does this move.
– Head position: unlike most Ballroom dances, both the lead and follow will have their heads facing the same direction (or as my friend like to put it “dancing cheek to cheek”)

Here’s Deborah Quiroga and Carlos Barrionuevo dancing an excellent Argentine Tango:

For what to look for in the other dances, please click here.


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