Over the years I have heard people complain about the existence of Tango competitions. Yes, Argentine Tango is not a ballroom dance. There are no skill levels such as bronze, silver or gold. It’s a social dance, meaning that people do it for its pure enjoyment. Social dancers prefer not to compare themselves to others nor be judged. I cant’ help compare it to “soul surfing”, like in the 1987 film North Shore. Remember that one?
On a personal level, I agree with the above beliefs, however there also quite a few equally good points in support of Tango competitions.
7 Reasons to Enter a Tango Competition
1. Competition makes you better
Think of a running a race against someone who is faster and stronger than you. You will find that you beat your own record time. When you compete you will automatically push your abilities.
2. Intensive practice and training
Anyone who plans to compete, knows you have to train. It means loading up on private lessons for yourself and your partner combined with lots and lots of practice. And of course, the more you train and practice, the better dancer you will become.
3. Test your skill level
Competitions are an opportunity to test yourself. Are you really as good as you think you are? By the end of the competition you will know if your technique is as good as you think or needs improvement. That being said, don’t let it ruin your self esteem either. You may be an amazing social dancer, just not the “perfect” salon dancer.
4. Emotional Growth
Let’s face it, entering a competition takes a lot of guts. You are putting yourself out there to be judged. You will need to reach into your inner strength to exude confidence and dance your best under these extreme circumstances.
5. Establish yourself within tango community
Even if you don’t win first place, second and third place winners receive a lot of recognition. It’s a great way to demonstrate your abilities to your tango community and beyond, especially if you are, or plan to become a professional dancer.
6. Learn proper Salon Tango
If you compete in the Salon portion of the competition, you will have to follow all of the regulations so that you will not be disqualified. These rules are very useful even on the social dance floor. A good salon dancer is very good in crowded milongas, because they will always watch the space around them and will never do a lifted boleo.
7. Camaraderie with fellow competitors
Even though you are competing against each other, you are all in it together experiencing the nerves and the cheers. With such an exhilarating shared experience you can’t help but develop a close bond with fellow competitors.
Have I convinced you yet? If yes, you have until April 10, 2014 to register for the Official Argentine Tango USA Championship 2014 that is taking place here in San Francisco.
OFFICIAL PRELIMINARY OF TANGO BUENOS AIRES FESTIVAL & DANCE WORLD CUP 2014
What: The Official Argentine Tango USA Championship & USA Tango Festival
When: April 17 -20, 2014
Where: San Francisco Airport Marriott Hotel (minutes from the San Francisco International Airport and 15 miles from downtown San Francisco).