Tango Nation Milonga at Allegro Ballroom. I got there really late, so missed the lesson. This milonga takes place in the Junior Ballroom at Allegro, while the main ballroom hosts the ballroom party. Since I got there really late, there was no one at the main door to answer any questions. There was just a big sign, front and center, that said "Late Comers, put $3 in the envelope". So that's what I did since I didn't know any better. Apparently, that was a mistake, and I was supposed to pay my milonga entrance fee directly to Mat MaMoody, the organizer, or one of his volunteers. Whoops. My bad. When I asked/told him about it later, he was totally cool about it, said I could pay whatever I liked (since it was extremely late) and that it was on the honor system, which was nice.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Milonga at Bollyhood. In the interest of adding diversity to Scouting Tour, I had intended to go to this milonga, but after spending 10 minutes circling for a parking spot (and not wanting to pay extra to park in a lot), seeing one, and then turning the car around to get it, only to watch it get snapped up by the person two cars in front of me, I got frustrated and threw in the towel. I didn't want to go through the parking hassle on this Saturday night when it was supposed to be rainy. So I reprogrammed the GPS to go to Cheryl Burke, now the Metronome Dance Collective, and went there instead, where I found rock star parking right out in front.
The Late Shift Milonga at Metronome Dance Collective. They have changed the space a little since I was here last. They built a full wall with doorway in the front area by the windows where the two areas of the room used to be somewhat separate. In the now fully separated area is some seating, a desk and cash register, and interestingly, two vending machines with water and soda, and snacks, each with a $0.50 premium on top of the usual item cost (i.e., a $1 bag of chips sells for $1.50). This $0.50 charge goes to the fund that will help the Collective rent a 4,000 square foot ballroom space (I assume that is the other big original Metronome ballroom a block away).
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Cafe Cocomo with lesson beforehand by Felipe Martinez and Shorey Myers. The class was good, and focused on the Leaders, in my opinion, which is a good thing, and I was surprised that there were a number of very high-level leaders who made a special point to attend this lesson. The topic was the cross system walk to the Follower's cross, and then for the Leader to walk on the outside of the embrace (still in cross system), and then to the inside of the embrace (still in cross system) to Follower back ochos. So during his forward cross system walks on the outside and inside of the embrace, he steps left foot forward on his left side, and right foot forward on his right side. Then we changed the step, with the Leader walking on the close side, back into the line of dance, while leading several Follower back ochos. Here the Leader's left foot crosses behind his right foot. Then she does a right foot side step, during which the Leader does a right foot sacada of her trailing left foot, into Follower left foot back ocho, right foot back ocho, left foot back ocho. During the Follower back ochos, the Leader walks around her on the close side. Here for the Follower, the goal was to get extreme (270 degree) rotation on her left foot back ocho so they get back into the line of dance. To do this extreme back ocho, Leader should lead Follower such that her left shoulder opens back to get her hips around and pivot farther for her back ocho/back cross step. At arriving at the Follower's cross, the Leader leads her side step right first, and then he does his right foot sacada. The Leader goes down at the Follower's side step so she can make her side step solid, big and around the Leader. All the steps for the Leader are in cross system. It was a very good class.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Volunteer Ushering at Forever Tango at the Marine's Memorial Theatre. I ushered for this show two years ago when it was last in town. Back then, it was at the Post Street Theater, the former sister theatre to Marine's Memorial. Marine's Memorial is smaller than Post Street, and every seat in the house is a good one. The ushers seats are whatever ones are available, usually in the back, as they were on this full-house night; I had no problem seeing or hearing and was very happy with my view of the show. One of the most fun things this time around was that the dancers did a lot of behind-the-scenes practicing of different, non-show material beforehand. The show itself was good, although I admit that I liked the 2008 production better.