Thursday, May 31, 2007

Providence Alternative Tango Fest - A tanda with fireworks

Most of the dances I had at this festival were way above average, but some were simply amazing. Sunday, at the beginning of the milonga I was chatting with Shorey Myers (who was DJing that evening) as she was picking the music. She is selecting music as she goes, so I knew it was unlikely I was going to have a chance to dance with her once the milonga gets going, as she is very concentrated on the music selection and she never dances much when she's "on the clock". That seems to work, as I'm a great fan of her DJing (and her dancing and her teaching ...), can you tell I have a "tango crush"? ;)

So I asked her if she wanted to dance a tanda until it gets too crazy. I personally love to have the entire dance floor to myself, my navigation needs work and having to deal with that takes away from my ability to listen to the music. Shorey selected some DiSarli music (one of her favorite) and off we went. Debbi managed to grab a few shots and the one on the left is one of them.

That tanda was possibly the most fun I've had since I started tango. Half way through it, very in tune with the energy of the dance at that time, fireworks started outside (in celebration of Memorial Day) and they kept going for the remainder of the tanda. By the end of the tanda I was pretty much high on endorphins, it was so awesome. We got back to her DJ station as she had to pick the music for the next tanda, and as she's doing that she says "do you want to do another one?" ... Oh, I don't kn... OF COURSE SILLY! ;-) And off we went again, and the 2nd one was just as fun, if not even better.

I had the privilege to dance with Shorey a few times before, and it was always fantastic, but these two tandas were simply amazing. It was the first day I was feeling better after dealing with a sinusitis for the last few days, and I was in a great mood to start with. I began the evening by dancing with Debbi, and we had a blast, which probably set me up for the dances with Shorey. What makes Shorey such an amazing dancer (in my opinion), is that she is responding to the lead in a manner consistent with the feel of the lead. If I lead an energetic move, not only she moves like that, but she adds more energy, at all the right moments. When, after a dynamic section, I settle down in the embrace to "reset" for the next musical phrase, not only she's mirroring that, but she somehow makes it even deeper. She manages to suggest pauses and dynamic changes in such a way and with such timing that it doesn't throw me off in my leading. She is one of the very few people I danced with who I feel a have a "conversation" while dancing. I'm pretty sure she has to work extra to allow me to "hear" things that advanced dancers pick up on right away, and even with all that extra work, I miss a lot of her contributions, but I pick up on some, and it feels amazing.

Having the best ever dance at the beginning of a milonga is a mixed blessing. It certainly puts one in a great mood, but it almost made me to want to go home, as it would be unlikely to get any better then that. It didn't, and chances are, it will be a while until I'll top that one, but I still had some amazing dances that night and I'll write about those later.


Providence Alternative Tango Fest - The "official" photographer

I was the "official" photographer for this festival, which was fun. Photography is a passion, which was overtaken by tango in the last year, but it's now making a comeback. I've taken over 600 pictures and it will take me a bit to go through all of them, weed out the bad shots, fix what can be fixed, crop, resize, adjust colors & levels (so if you are waiting to see the pictures, please be patient). I also took video of the performances (and a little video of the events) and will post that soon as well

For this festival I implemented an idea I had for a while, I setup a projector hooked up to my laptop, and once in a while I'd download the pictures from the camera in the laptop and have the projector display on a wall a slide show of the pictures that were taken (you can see the projection on the back wall in the picture). People seemed to enjoy checking out the pictures, even though they were in their "raw", unedited form (all "duds" included : like badly focused, overexposed, underexposed, etc).

The light levels are very low at these events so I brought two radio remote controlled strobes. Sadly one of them went bad almost right away, but I use the other one which in "cooperation" with my on camera strobe worked pretty well. If I decide to try to make a business from taking pictures at these type of events, I'll probably have to acquire a lot more remote controlled lights. Maybe 5 or 6.

The great unknown is the demand for pictures and people's willingness to pay for them. Would people be interested in buying prints? Or maybe hi resolution files? It's unlikely one would be able to make a living with this, but if I could cover some of my tango expenses, that would be nice. Maybe I should make a poll and see what people think about a service like this.

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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

"Don't work too hard; it's bad for you" ...

Great article in my opinion :

Don't work too hard; it's bad for you

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Saturday, May 19, 2007

Tango music survey - ta da!!!!

I've been working on this survey for a while now and with the help of many people from the tango community, it finally got to a form where I'm (almost) happy with. Below the link for the survey, there is a link for the live report. I will add more reports in the future so it would probably be useful to bookmark this blog entry. The best way to keep up to date with any development is to subscribe to the "RSS feed" for comments (if you use a Feed reader, if you don't know what that is, on the left side of the page there is more info).

Please email the link to this post to anyone you know who is a tango dancer, the more responses we collect, the more meaningful the survey becomes.

Click here to take the survey.

Click here to access the live summary report. Please be advised that some of the bar graphs for the matrix responses are not relevant, and I couldn't figure out how to take them out. Always use the counts to draw your own conclusions. Once I get relevant participation I will start publishing my own reports so stay tuned.

Click here to access the live text report.

I would like to thank everyone that helped me putting this together and I would like to thank in advance everyone that will take the time to complete the survey.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Automobiles as a metaphor for followers...

There is person in the tango community who uses automobiles as a metaphor to refer to women/followers. By the choice of brand/model of the cars this person is choosing, it is obvious he means this as a compliment, yet I can't help but cringe every time I read one of these posts. While the cars mentioned are marvelous pieces of technology, often of beautiful design, they are still a big chunk of metal that is 100% reactive. As in, they don't do anything unless the driver initiates it (well, one would hope they don't, otherwise whoever drives it it's screwed, and not in a good way).

To me, if I was a follower, especially if I was an awesome dancer, being compared to a car, even one that costs a quarter of a million USD, it would be almost an insult. I am somewhat curios to hear from women how do they feel when (as tango dancers) they are compared with automobiles.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Can everyone please ...

... forward this link to any musician who plays tango at milongas? Pretty please?

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Neo-tango music reviews by TJ Nelson

See this link :

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Photography: how it all started ...

A few people asked me recently how/why I started in photography, tango or motorcycles, so I figured it would be fun to write about that, given the subtitle of my blog ...

This post is about Photography, I will write about motorcycles and tango in other posts.

It was the spring of 2000 and I was looking for a job as the company I was working for was ... "taking water" and was very likely to go under (which it did, shortly after I left). I knew it was likely I was going to leave Florida and I wanted to experience some "tropical" fun while I was still there.

I took a week of and headed to the "Keys", the long sable of islands connected by RT1/US1, that goes all the way to Key West, the home of "Mile 0" on RT-1/US1. The second day I was there I decided to try "Coral reef diving". It's a full day venture, first you get a crash course in diving in a pool, then you get on a boat, head to a coral reef and spend an hour or so under water. It was quite exhilarating to see a shark 20 feet away ... (it was one of the small sharks, not known to attack people), but ... I learned that AFTER I saw it ...

Anyway, before I got to the boat, I went ahead and purchased two of those one time use underwater cameras. When I was growing up I saw countless episodes of the Jacques-Yves Cousteau underwater documentaries and was looking forward to take pictures of that amazing colorful underwater life. Can you spell "naive"?

So, I did, take many pictures while diving, if I remember correctly I used two rolls of film (for the younger crowd, film is something that was used in cameras before the time of digital...), 36 pictures on each roll. As a person with no special interest in photography, taking 70 pictures in one hour was virtually unheard off (Of course, now I have cards that hold 207 hi-res pictures, I have 6 cards and I still have to take my laptop with me to unload the pictures if I go for more then one day trip...)

So, I have a blast during the dive, got a little sick on the boat ride back and rushed to the "one hour" lab to get the pictures developed. I paced in front of the store until they were ready and I opened the envelope expecting to find those amazing colorful shots that you see in magazines (in retrospect that sounds really silly). What I got instead was a bunch of blurry, grainy, blue tinted pictures, on 75% of them not even been able to tell what the hell I was looking at. To say I was disappointed was the understatement of the year. I went back to the store and showed them the pictures and they looked at me and said something along the lines of "uhh, what exactly were you expecting out of a fleshless $8 camera?" ...

Hmm, well, determined to get some better pictures on my next "adventure" which was snorkeling in the coral reef, I went to the local camera store and rented an underwater camera. That was a $200 camera (to me that seemed a huge amount of money to pay for a camera, now my cheapest lens cost me 3 times that much...) so it had to be great, right? Well, while snorkeling in the coral reef is something everyone should try in their lifetime (unlike diving where you can hurt your ears if you're doing it wrong, not to mention decompression side effects if not done properly, snorkeling is pretty safe), the pictures came out just as crappy (well, a bit better, but not by much).

I went back to the camera store and complained about the camera being defective or something. It was then, when the guy in the store (I think he was the owner and a photographer himself) looked at me for a bit, picked up a book from behind the counter, opened it to a specific spot and invited me to sit down on a sofa he had in the store and read. It was a chapter on underwater photography. After reading that chapter I found another one that was interesting, and then another. I ended up spending a few hours in the store going over the entire book. When I got back home I bought a similar book, then another. Then I made my first "big" purchase, I got a N80 Nikon SLR and from there on ... well, that was the beginning.

I never got the chance to take pictures underwater since, but I have no doubt it will happen again someday.

The guy could've said "The camera is fine, to take really good pictures underwater one needs thousand dollars worth of equipment", and if he did, my interest in photography would've never been initiated. Is there a moral to this story? I think so, but I'll let you find it.


Rave: dancing on alternative ...

If you read any 4 posts in my blog you're likely to run into at least one rant about alternative music. How it's boring, predictable, blah, blah, blah ... Last night I went to a practica and one of my favorite followers, R was there. She was busy practicing (as she will perform at an upcoming festival), so when I saw at some point she she was available I went and ask her to dance before I could her what music was coming, which is something I almost never do.

Can you guess what was the next tanda? Yeap, alternative! Rats...

So, we start moving and ... MAGIC! Dancing on that first song, I have no idea what it was, was amazing (for me, that is). The music was what you'd expect from an alternative song, predictable, steady beat, but it had an almost hypnotic feel to it and the connection was fantastic. R is extremely good at simulating "frictionless movement" (by that I mean that one could lead something (say a boleo) extremely slow, and it works just as it would work when it's done faster, when there is the help of inertia) and she also has great balance, it was so much fun to lead some things that are normally done on a single beat, much MUCH slower, like wraps and boleos, colgadas, etc.

I lost that magic after the first song and while we danced a couple of tandas, the second being traditional tango, the first song was by far the most fun.

So, I guess dancing on anything can be fantastic, given the right partner (and mojo, if it's one of those days when my mojo is MIA, the best partner in the world is not going to make a difference).

As crazy as it may seem, those 3 minutes made the one hour round trip to get there worthwhile... For those of you who are not dancing tango, watch out, if you start, you may end up like this ...

P.S. BTW, the title was just for the shock value, in case it was not clear, the rave here was for the dance with R, not for the alternative song ;-)

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Thursday, May 10, 2007

Guerrilla milonga (pics)

Tuesday Jacob organized another "Guerrilla milonga" in Porter Sq. That is an unsanctioned event which goes until we get kicked out and then we move to the "backup" location. This time we had it outdoors in the Porter Sq in front of the ice cream shop. People would stop, look, ask questions : "Why are you doing this?", "What is this?", etc.

I took some pictures, you can see them here :

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Monday, May 07, 2007

Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 3 - "Closing" Milonga

This was in my opinion the best miloga of the whole festival and I certainly had the most fun, probably the most fun I had at any milonga to date.

After starting the evening on such a high note by dancing with Mila, I had my "mojo" on for most of the night and as such, I had a great time.

I've danced with way too many people to mention them all, and I'll only mention some of the highlights.

But before I get to that, it just occurred to me that I did not have a bad dance the entire time I was in Montreal. Actually with the exception of one tanda, which I would say it was an average experience, all the other ranged from good to fantastic.

Back to the highlights of the evening (they are in a relative chronological order).

I was chatting with this woman from NY (let's call her NL), as we were waiting for some music I liked (while most of the music was traditional, there were some neo-tango/electronica tandas when I took the opportunity to rest) so we can dance. She asked me, and that was one of the most elegant (not to mention virtually "risk" free) way a woman could ask a man she doesn't know for a dance. It was something along the lines of (and I'm heavily paraphrasing) "I saw you dance and I would like to dance with you, when you're free, come find me". A man would have to be a total asshole to respond with something unpleasant to such an elegant invite, even if he doesn't have any intention of dancing with her.

Anyway, she asked if I knew how long Mila was dancing tango for, saying she hopes it was a long time, as that would leave her time to "catch up". You know, if you see somebody that is been dancing for as long as you do and they are 10 times better, it tends to get depressing ... That sort of suggested she is been dancing for a while and she's not very satisfied with her progress.

Some music I like comes along and off we go. She is really good (balance, no anticipation, ability to follow dynamic changes, musicality, etc) so I tell her between tandas, asking how long she's been dancing anyway. 9 months. Uhh, well, that left me speechless for a second or so. I don't think NL has anything to be worried about her rate of progress... We danced for a few tandas and it was a delight.

Then I asked A to dance, a woman from San Francisco, I've watched her dance and she looks very peaceful. She is very light, very smooth movements, a pleasure to dance with.

I then danced with Ciko (Adam Hoopengardner's partner), they teach in NY and other places (BTW, I really like the way Adam dances milonga.) I did have the chance to dance with her before a couple of times, but each of those times was kind of bad timing (either I was tired, or I was uninspired, etc) so when she asked me to dance I was glad, as I was having a good night. And it showed, the first song of the tanda was amazing! If I could dance like that consistently, I'd be a happy man (for a while, anyway ... ;-). We danced for a couple of tandas, but that first song remained the best.

I danced a few tandas with E, from Montreal, she has a very warm embrace and she is an all around good dancer.

Also NT from NY, she is a very, very good dancer and we had a few great tandas, and I'm looking forward to my next trip to NY.

There were people I didn't mention, and it's not because it wasn't great, but mostly because there were no surprises, dancing with them was just as awesome I was expecting and I mentioned them in the past. Also towards the end of the night I was getting so tired, my memories are a bit blurry... ;-)

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Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 3 - Pre-milonga practica

I got there right at 8PM when the "Practica" was scheduled to start. I said I was going to explain why I made sure to get there right at the beginning. There are a number of reasons, among them having the floor all to myself (or at least large chunks of it), or people being more relaxed as this is a practica, so they feel less pressure to be "perfect" (which incidentally, makes most people dancing better) but the most important reason is it's the best time to try to dance with some of the teachers. They are usually rested and more available.

After changing my shoes I was chatting with someone when Robin Tomas, one of the teachers came in with a coffee cup in one hand and a huge backpack, gave a hug to Mila (of Mila & Korey), another teacher and that hug somehow morphed into a dance that lasted about half a song (all with the coffee in his hand and the backpack still attached). That was rather sweet.

Once they stopped, Mila was tapping on the music as she was sort of sitting on the armrest of the couch, it seemed like that half song dance got her going and she looked like she wanted to dance. I was not going to miss that chance, so I jumped (literally) of the sofa and said "Can I take over?". As the word were coming out of my mouth, I felt kind of guilty putting her on the spot, I felt like I kind of forced her hand to accept, but it was too late to take it back.

She graciously agreed, we started to dance and it got better and better, she was doing all sorts of crazy footwork (practica, remeber?), and you could feel the energy of the dance going up and up. Two songs later, as the tanda ended, instead of saying thank you, she took her coat off, and off we went again. That was so much fun, there is no way I could ever translate that into words, so I won't.

So, one would say I started the evening with a high, and, honestly, for a second or so I entertained the thought of jumping in the car and head home, as it was unlikely to get any better than that, and it's fantastic when the evening ends on (such a) high note.

I didn't and I'm so glad I didn't.

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Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 3 - The Alternative Milonga

As some of you may remember, I'm not too fond of dancing on alternative music, so one may wonder, why go? Well, I was kind of getting bored hanging out in the city alone, and I figured I could just go and socialize, which is sometimes easier when you're not trying to dance.

This milonga, unlike the one the day before, was much better attended. Quite a few good dancers and they were a pleasure to watch, interestingly enough, this felt more like a practica, I don't know why, maybe because it was day time?

David Liu was the DJ and he played interesting music. I even danced a couple of tandas, which is something I hardly ever do. Oh, by interesting I mean good, just to eliminate any confusion ... ;)

It was kind of laid back, low key. I left early to have dinner so I can be at the last milonga of the festival at the opening. Why? I'll explain later.

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Sunday, May 06, 2007

Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 2 - the "Midnight" milonga

At about 1AM I made it to the "Midnight milonga" which was at the "Tango Fabrika" and was going to go until 6AM. Lots of people were already there and yay! Shorey was DJing. I was chatting with her while some tango electronica was playing. One of the guests turned around and said "Hey Shorey, when are you going to stop playing those cortinas?". Ouch, that was a harsh way to refer to tango electronica music. But funny! Soon thereafter Shorey started to play the music she usually plays, and I looked around for someone to dance with.

T was there with P, so once I changed my shoes, we danced until we coudn't move anymore, probably about 4 tandas. It was pretty crowded and for the first time it didn't stressed me as much as it usually does. Even T commented on my dancing being a lot more relaxed and complex despite the lack of space.

I found then E again and I asked her to dance. It was the last song of a tanda and the next tanda was the only tanda of non-classic tango I've heard that night (until 3AM when I left) so after trying one song (at which we both sucked) we decided to wait until the next classic tanda. Once we had a chance to dance on music I like, it was really fun, but my exhaustion was taking it's toll and I found myself many time falling into default moves and not being able to immerse in the music. By now the floor was packed so that didn't help. We danced a couple of tandas and then we stopped and planned to dance the next evening, when we'd be rested. Besides, she was wearing some shoes which were hurting her feet. Looking forward to tonight.

The last person I danced with, another E, let's call her E2, she was very fun to dance with, and very gracious to tolerate my exhaustion induce clumsiness. But at that time, it was 3AM and I was clearly done. I decide to head back to W's apartment and have some decent sleep, so Sunday evening I'll be able to keep my eyes open. At 3:30 I was sleeping.

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Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 2 - introductions, more people should do it

Earlier that evening, Marika flagged me down and introduced me to a friend of hers, E from Montreal. She said she is trying to introduce people she really likes, Marika is such a sweetheart.

The woman I was dancing with when they started to play "La Cumparsita", the last song of the "Grand Ball" milonga, excused herself to go dance the last song of the night with her husband, so when I looked around I saw E sitting down and I went and asked her to dance. Excellent dancer, very musical and a very warm embrace, reminded me of Marika's embrace. I was glad to find out she was going to the "Midnight" milonga, (which was the second milonga of the evening, going till 6AM) so we can dance at least one full tanda.

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Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 2 - the composer

The practica seamlessly morphed into the milonga as more people arrived. I decided to play smart and save my energy, just dancing with people I really wanted to dance with.

Through the evening I've seen this woman with awesome musicality, very elegant footwork and what seemed a great connection to her partners. I eventually saw her sitting down and I moved in quickly, but before I got there, they announced the live orchestra was about to start playing. That kind of stopped my dead in my tracks about 15 feet away, and as the orchestra started to play Piazzolla, we made eye contact. I don't like dancing on Piazzolla when played by Piazzolla, I'm going to like it even less when it's played by some random band. But I didn't want to give her the wrong impression, so since we made eye contact I went to her introduced myself and told her I was on my way to ask her to dance, but Piazzolla is not something I care to dance on. She asked me if I would like to sit and wait for some other music to come along and I agreed. We chatted a while, her name is L and she is from Toronto. It soon became obvious the band was going to play only Piazzolla and I didn't want to keep her from dancing with other people so we agree to look for each other once some other music is being played.

Half an hour later, I was chatting with someone and L shows up, asking if now would be a good time and off we went on a waltz tanda. Boy, I was right, she is awesome, great musicality, awesome connection, she was also able to catch the most subtle parts of my lead, something that so far, only teacher level dancers (and not all of them) have been able to catch every single time.

Once the tanda was over, the orchestra kicked in again. Grrrrrrr... OK, we agreed to try again once more danceable music is being played, and I went and found her again as the orchestra was playing what was supposed to be their last song. We chatted a bit more and I found out she is a (music) composer ... Well, that explains a lot. That also makes one of the questions she asked on the dance floor one of the best compliments I've ever got. She asked me if I was a musician. I consider that question coming from a music composer one of the best compliments on my musicality I ever got. Period. So the band was apparently a success, as people asked for some more, and the band obliged. Grrrrr... And when that was done, they announced the dance performances ... Double Grrrrr.... ;) The Gods are conspiring against me dancing with L again it seems as the milonga was supposed to and at midnight and it was already 11:40. Sigh ...

The performances were actually quite fun, and once they were done they announce the milonga will go for a bit longer. So I found L and off we went on a tango tanda. That particular set wasn't one of favorites but hey, I'll take what I can get. Interestingly enough, I didn't feel the same fantastic connection as I did for the vals tanda, I think the exhaustion was starting to take it's toll. It was an amazing dance nonetheless. Looking forward to dance with her again.

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Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 2 - the practica

At 7PM the "Grand Ball" milonga was scheduled to start, so I went back to W's place, took a shower, got dressed, got in the car and went back to "Espace dell'Artes" where the event took place. What I missed in the brochure was that the milonga was actually starting at 8PM, from 7PM to 8PM was a practica. Cool. A bit after 7PM, Mila & Korey showed up and I took to opportunity and asked Mila to dance. Ahhh ... a huge empty floor, some Biagi music I like and a Mila as a dance partner, I didn't die and made it to heaven, did i? ;) Because it's debatable if I have the right to go to Heaven ...

Once I managed to get back on the planet earth, I asked a woman to dance, she was dancing for a year, but not very often, and once she was able to relax a bit she was lovely to dance with. I was heading to get some water and ran into Shorey, who was DJing that evening (I love her music selection), dressed into a lovely blue dress. She asked me if I wanted to dance and ... I resisted the temptation to look behind me to make sure she was talking to me. Uhhh, duh ... of course silly, and somehow I managed to accept in a dignified way, squishing my temptation to jump up and down clapping my hands ;) And off we went. Sigh ... and once again I departed the Planet earth.

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Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 2 - the afternoon

I woke up around 10 after going to sleep at 5:30. I decided to leave the car at the W's place and take the bicycle instead. That was a fantastic idea as the weather was incredibly nice this weekend. I ended up riding around town, soaking in the vibe of the city. Awesome. After having brunch and riding around, at 3PM the "Alternative milonga" was scheduled to start at "Chez Lili". I figured, what the hell, I might not like alternative music but I was tired and they have a few sofas, so I'll just watch people dance and rest.

That milonga was not popular at all. I was there until about 4:30, maybe 5, and we were about 10 people all together. I danced a few tandas, a couple of them with an instructor from the Tango Fabrika, and that was a lot of fun.

I also watched a taller gentleman dancing with Jennifer (one of the teachers), and they were using an interesting embrace, where her left hand went on the small of his back under his arm. This would be interesting to try with a really short follow.

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Montreal Neo Tango Festival - random acts of kindness

As me and W, my host this weekend, were taking the elevator to her apartment, we were talking about how to handle the parking issue for the weekend, as in downtown Montreal is a bit of a problem. A woman in the elevator overheard us and offered her parking space in the basement garage for the weekend, as she was not using it. Just like that. I love Montreal.

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Saturday, May 05, 2007

Montreal Neo Tango Festival - day 1

This is my third time in Montreal, this time all by myself as Debbi had to work this weekend. (Finally) learning from past experiences I decided not to take any workshops as one needs all the energy for the all night dancing. That proved to be wise.

Friday there were two milongas, back to back. One at Espace dell'Artes, from 9:30PM to 2PM and another one at Tango Fabrika from 2AM to 6AM. To sum it up, I had a great time.

Before the milonga I met Caroline, it's quite interesting to meet someone so long after "meeting them online". I've been reading her blog for so long, I felt like I knew her before we met. We had a coffee and a great time chatting, mostly about tango of course, but I promise there were a few non tango related subjects touched... I think.

We went together to the first milonga, and when we got there, we were pretty much the only ones there. We danced a couple of tandas, which was fun, but I was still kind of stiff from the long drive and didn't have the groove on yet. We grabbed a glass of red wine (why on earth we can't have a glass of wine at Boston milongas is beyond me. I've heard arguments about people drinking too much, but I've been to many milogas in both Montreal and NY and I've yet to see someone inebriated), and with it's help I was able to chill a bit.

After opening the evening with Caroline, I danced quite a bit. First with a woman from upstate NY, she is quite fun to dance with, so we danced together three tandas, when we had to take a break, as we were getting tired. Then I danced two tandas with S, one of my favorite Montreal follows, she is quite an awesome dancer. The surprise of the night was L, from Montreal. We talked at the Yale festival, but we didn't have a chance to dance, but we did last night. Wow, that was fantastic. She was born in Argentina, and even though she left the country when she was three, she must have the tango gene because she is incredibly good. Perfect balance, great embrace and musicality, I look forward to dancing with her again. I danced with too many other people to mention them all, besides as the night went on, my memories of it are getting blurry, as I was getting tired.

At the Tango Fabrika milonga I didn't dance a lot, as I was getting tired and I becoming self conscious about my clumsiness.

There are quite a few people I'd like to get the opportunity to dance with before this weekend is over, so it looks like this weekend is going to be a lot of fun.

To be continued ...

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Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Selling prints of images shot at tango events, some concerns ...

It recently came to my attention what some people in the community have concerns I am making money by selling prints I shot at tango events without the consent of the subjects. I could hardly contain my laughter when I heard this, but let me address these concerns.

From the two events I posted online allowing people to place orders for prints, the two events being the Yale Tango Festival and the Harvard Spring Milonga, I sold 3 4x6 prints for $3.75 a piece for a "profit" of $8.35. That profit doesn't take into account the wear & tear of the equipment, nor the amortization of the equipment nor my time spent taking the pictures and the hours spent post processing them. So, anyone concerned I am getting rich by selling prints of them dancing should be rest assured, no one wants prints of those images, obviously not even themselves.

This was an experiment to see if there is a demand for such a service, obviously there isn't. People are not interested in buying prints or paying for digital copies, they will happily download the images if they are offered free of charge, but not if they are asked to pay for it. As such, I will likely discontinue the experiment, maybe just I'll offer my services to festival organizers as "the official" photographer in exchange for a pass.

But, to make sure I address the concerns, anyone who feels like their image should not be offered as a print for sale, contact me with the ID of the images and I'll take them off the website which handles my print orders.

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