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Janett’s Tango Did You Know…?

Posted: 15:50, Tuesday 17 March 2009 by Janett Jackson

Updated: 11:17, Monday 27 April 2009 by Andrew Gibki

…about Carlos Estevez, a tango dancer & one of the first writers of tango

Carlos Alberto Estevez, a bank clerk and tango dancer, wrote about tango, ‘its prowess and its defiance,… for the in-house journal of his bank, Banco Europa para America Latina (BEAL)’. These articles helped place tango in its historical context.

Estevez was nicknamed ‘Petroleo’ (gasoline) either because his famous spins reminded people of ‘the whirling pinwheel in the glass dome of the 1940s gas pumps’ or ‘his beverage of choice was cheap red wine, called petroleo in lunfardo because of its dark colour’.

NB: Lunfardo is an argot (ie a secret language and means ‘slang’ in French, Spanish & Catalan). It was developed at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century by people from the various less wealthy socio-economic groups in and around Buenos Aires and Montevideo possibly to prevent outsiders from understanding their conversations.

Information source:
Thompson, Robert Farris. 2005. Tango: the art history of love. United States: Vintage Books. P 247-249.
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