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News from Reina in Tokyo

Posted: 15:53, Sunday 11 February 2007 by Megan Jones

Updated: 10:09, Monday 12 February 2007 by Ben

Reina, pictured dancing with Mike Lim, moved to Tokyo late last year having been in Adelaide and dancing tango long enough for us to know we would miss her! She wrote recently to let us know how her tango has been progressing since her move to Tokyo:

First tango letter from Tokyo:

The Thursday class that I do is not a beginner’s class. Except for me, the other participants have learned tango for more than three years. They are really advanced. Noriko Tanada our tango teacher has a ballet background. She uses each toe when she takes one step forward, not the whole foot. This means that she pays attention to individual toes, arms and other parts of the body. So her movement looks elegant and artistic like a ballet dancer (maybe her way of dance is quite similar to Alejandra’s).

Noriko sold me a pair of tango heels that she had bought at Neo Tango in Argentina. When I wore them for the first time, I realised that different shoes suggest different ways of dancing. Stepping from the heels to the front of the foot I have to pay more attention to each toe. Before, I did not use toes separately. Yesterday I had two and a half hours of tango lessons: basic and intermediate. In the first one we learned how to walk.

Noriko said when we step forward from the right leg, the second toe touches down first and then the big toe steps down at the end of the weight shift onto the toes. The two legs follow on the one line but the tip of the toes are slightly outside rather than straight. Older teachers prefer to put the toes straight but this is a bit of old fashion at the moment. Although the toes are put outside, the toes need to be touched together. To do this, we need to use abdominal muscles to lift our legs. The way of using the muscles seems to be the same as doing the first position of ballet.



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