Information for New Dancers
New to Argentine Tango? This guide will get you started and dancing in no time! First, know that partners are not necessary for any classes, practicas or milongas offered by Tango Colorado. If a particular teacher sponsors a workshop or class that requires a partner, they will specify it in their notice. We cannot guarantee there will be lead/follow balance at any of these events, but in classes most instructors ask that partners rotate after every few songs so that all dancers can participate. If you come to class with a partner, you are encouraged to rotate, but will not be forced to do so. Dancing with different partners makes for better leaders and followers by encouraging dancers to adapt to different dancing skill levels.
Where to Learn
Tango Colorado offers Tango Lessons from 6:30 – 7:30pm every Tuesday at the Denver Turnverein. There are also a number of teachers based in the Denver-Metro area and other cities in Colorado offering classes for beginners to advanced tango dancers. You can also take classes and workshops throughout the year from visiting teachers arriving from other States, Europe and, of course, Argentina. Not to mention the Tango Festival held twice a year in Denver (Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day weekend) and TC’s Tango Tiempo, two days of classes in April showcasing the best teachers in the area, and the best part? It’s FREE to all TC members! Be sure to check out the calendar in case of cancellations and updates.
Where to Dance
Once you have a few lessons under your belt is time to go out dancing! There are a number of milongas and practicas around the Denver-Metro area. Again, check out the calendar.
How to Learn
While it is possible to learn Argentine Tango from watching videos in our experience nothing compares to learning from a live teacher who can tailor the instructions to your skill level and can answer your questions. Nevertheless, if you are curious about learning to dance this wonderful dance but are not ready to step into the dance studio yet, take a look at the videos below so you can see what to expect when you decide to join us.
What to Wear
Clothing: The attire for classes and the practicas (practices) is generally casual. Jeans are acceptable, and you will see a variety of “dressiness” at the practicas. The most important thing is that you are comfortable. Layering is always a good idea because even when it’s cold outside, you can become quite warm after dancing a while.
Attire for milongas (the social dances) is generally more dressy and sometimes even elegant. How dressy you want to get depends on the milonga AND your mood. If you feel like getting really “decked out”, do. If you are feeling a little more casual, wear a nice skirt/pants and top. Strapless dresses can work, but you will probably feel more comfortable with something attached to your shoulders. Tight skirts and pants do not allow the leg extension necessary in Tango and can be restrictive.
Shoes: Until you’re “hooked” on Tango and feel that intense need to buy multiple pairs of Tango shoes, all you need are shoes that have a soft or leather sole that will pivot easily on the floor. Rubber soled shoes do not work.
If you're looking to follow, heals will allow you to get more extension in your back step. A heel of one inch to four inches is fine, whatever you feel most comfortable in. Make sure they attach to your foot (open backed shoes, sandals, clogs, etc. don’t work for Tango). Platform shoes do not work well for Tango either and your feet will hurt if you try to wear them dancing. If you know you’re committed and want to spend the money, you can find dance shoes at any dance store, including practice shoes and dance sneakers.
Tango shoes are also available through a variety of online outlets, but before you spend the money, try out a few pair of leather/soft soled shoes, and experiment with heel height (and heel width.)