Tango Codigos – Part 2

31 08 2010

During my recent trip to Buenos Aires, I ran across a posting of tango codigos at the Saturday night milonga, Cachirulo at Maipu 444 — one of my favorite milongas in Buenos Aires. The Cachirulo codigos were posted in six languages at the entrance to the milonga. Here is the English version of the Cachirulo tango ‘codes of etiquette’ or codigos which I felt were masterfully written — written conversationally, polite but direct (like the Argentines are so good at)  with an emphasis on only those things that really matter — and with more teeth in them than I had in my earlier draft.   While not stated directly in so many words, the message is clear: mess up, and we will ask you to leave.  We respect our guests too much to let you stay, and the ‘follows‘, in particular, enjoy dancing here because of the safe and comfortable environment which is provided.

The codes in the milonga, Cachirulo

Welcome to the best milonga in Buenos Aires. Tanguero friends, please pay attention.

  • Here we dance milonguero style tango, and we learn to respect the codes of the milonga.
  • We dance with a warm, respectful and close embrace.
  • We follow the line of dance, in a counter-clockwise direction.
  • We try not to step backwards into the line of dance, always walking forward, as it should be.
  • We do not lift our feet too much from the floor; this way we avoid hitting other dancers.
  • We invite women to dance through the classic “Cabeceo del caballero”.
  • Furthemore, and “very important”, respect is the first card we play in the game of the milonga.

Much to our regret, not respecting these codes will make it impossible to dance in Cachirulo.

Don’t get hung up on Cachirulo’s use of the words “milonguero” or “close embrace”, although that is consistent with my personal bias.  It is not about only dancing a particular style of dance.  Substitute the word “traditional” for  “milonguero” or leave out the words “milonguero” and “close (embrace)”  and these tango codigos still apply.

(January 4, 2011 update).     To which I might add:   What’s the hurry?   There is no need to pass; it’s not a race!

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4 01 2012
Argentine Tango: Tango shoes and my five-year plan – Chicago Dance Supply

[…] following article about tango codigos is posted with permission.  Please visit Tango Chose Me by Richard Miller for […]

4 01 2012
Argentine Tango: Tango shoes and my six-year plan – Chicago … | Learn Spanish in 3 Months

[…] following article about tango codigos is posted with permission.  Please visit Tango Chose Me by Richard Miller for […]

11 06 2016
Codigos | Tango High and Low

[…] in Buenos Aires, the codigos are posted so visitors know exactly what is expected of them (Tango Chose Me: codigos). As with other such codigos, most of them refer to floorcraft, but at Cachirulo, they also address […]

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