Thursday, September 19, 2013

Buenos Aires: Some REAL tango!

Buenos Aires is a beautiful city with a lot of culture and charm. One thing we wanted to experience while there was some tango. We considered some of the touristy tango shows, but decided instead to visit a little bar where the tango was more authentic.
The tango bar was called the Crumpalista and was a tiny little place that was certainly open to tourists, but wasn't really frequented by them.  We were very warmly welcomed and shown to a nice table in the back but with a good view of the 'stage'. Oh, "in the back" also means the second and last row. I mentioned the place was tiny, right?
Here's a good shot of the band. Bass guitar, electric piano and accordian ... squeezebox I mean. The music was wonderful! If you've never listened to tango, give it a try. The best part was that Seb (Argentinian) recognized most of the songs as he grew up listening to tango. Such a cultural experience for us. I always thought of tango as this professional ballroom dance for competitions or something, but it's what families in Argentina listened to and danced to. 
I'm so disappointed to realize I didn't get any photos of the professional tango dancers - too mesmerized to mess with my camera I guess! But, Kevin and Seb took a turn with the lovely lady. I know you're all shocked to find out that neither Brian nor I wanted to try it! (We barely danced at our senior prom) :) Kevin had actually taken some lessons and Seb, well, he's Argentinian so has it in his blood.
Quite a few of the patrons got up to dance, either with the professional couple or on their own. This was clearly a place the older locals (Portenos) came to dance tango and have some wine and catch up with friends. We felt a bit like we were intruding on a special party of friends, but it was really great. The main singer thought it was so nice that we were there and experiencing 'real' Argentinian culture, and of course, he applauded Seb often for bringing us along.
This guy is 91 years old and still comes by to sing a few tangos! I think we left around 1:00am and it seemed the party was only getting started. Things start late and end early morning on the weekend in BA.

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