American Smooth Tango

International Standard Tango


Slow - Slow - Quick -Quick - Slow

The Tango made its first appearance on modern dance floors in the early 1900s (1910-1914) and was instantly a hit with the public for its intriguing, asymmetrical, and sophisticated patterns. The Tango has no clearly defined origin: it may have originated in Argentina, Brazil, Spain, or Mexico, but it clearly descended from an early Spanish folk dance, the Milonga, and bears traces of Moorish and Arabic ancestry. The Tango first came to be known as such early in the 20th century in Argentina. It was danced, however, under various names throughout all of Latin America.

Argentine gauchos danced a modified version of the Milonga in the cafes of Buenos Aires. Argentine and Cuban youth later changed the name (and style) to Tango . The Cubans danced it to habanera rhythms which were syncopated and obscured the basic Milonga rhythm. It was not until after it caught on in Paris and was re-introduced to Argentina, that the music was restored to its native style.

For over 60 years, the four beat Tango rhythm has continued to enjoy popularity everywhere. 

The Tango is a progressive dance where the staccato movement of the feet and flexed knees highlight the dramatic style of the dance. The Tango is one of the most highly stylized ballroom dances. It is dramatic with measured crossing and flexing steps and poised pauses. Dancers emphasize the Tango’s vibrant and playful style of movement, rich expressions, improvisation and passion between dancers.

Although the Tango has had quite a history, it has received its place as a classic ballroom dance. It is popular internationally and is found in most, if not all, major cities. Each culture that dances the Tango brings its own flavor and spirit to the dance. The Ballroom style used for competition differentiates the dance from it’s more organic, improvisational, and lead/follow-focused form known as Argentine Tango. 

The current ballroom style is divided into the American Style and International Style. Both styles are danced as social and competitive dances. The International style is more globally recognized and accepted as a competitive style. While both styles are danced in a closed dance position, American style ballroom tango allows dancers to separate from a closed position to perform open moves like underarm turns, alternate hand holds, dancing apart, and dancing side-by-side.