Slow foxtrot, quickstep (dances and music of the golden age of America)
Foxtrot – developed in 1912 in the USA from a not so temperamental vanstep, a new pair dance. There is an erroneous opinion that the name of the dance comes from the English word foxtrot, which translates as “fox walk.” In fact, it is not. The foxtrot was invented by Harry Fox for performing on a show in New York in 1913. After World War I, the general enthusiasm for foxtrot spread to European countries. Unusually harmonious dance, combining primarily the unique “smooth” sliding (weightlessness) of steps, lightness, lightness. Perhaps, only here both partners are completely merged in the dance, as a whole. Really unique, incomparable to anything dance, charming Foxtrot, having many interpretations, is the most difficult dance of the standard program. The music for the foxtrot is rhythmic and smooth as well as the dance itself. Very often you can find beautiful interpretations of your favorite hits.
Quickstep is a fast foxtrot. The story of go begins at the beginning of the twentieth century, after the First World War in England, where some people wanted to dance foxtrot, but they did not like the fact that he had a rather slow tempo. Since the foxtrot is quite difficult for a dance to perform, complex dance steps need to be brought to perfect smoothness, many of them simply could not be performed under the new tempo, which set a frantic twentieth century. The professional foxtrot performers did not like this and in order to warn them that they were playing fast foxtrot at the party, they started writing “quick-time-foxtrot” at the invitations, sometimes “quick-time-steps” and, finally, shortly – “quickstep”. Accordingly, the music for Quickstep is faster and sharper.
My favorite quickstep
This simple dance looks very funny.
Polonaise in dance and music
Originating in Poland around the 15th century, the polonaise was exclusively a wedding dance. Then, somewhat modified, it became popular. By the end of the 16th century, the first acquaintance with the polonaise in Western Europe occurred, and in the 17th century it became popular throughout Europe. In Russia, this dance was known even in pre-Petrine
This report presents some of the best polonaises – the polonaises of Oginsky, Tchaikovsky, Wieniawski and Glinka.
Chaikovsky. Polonaise from ballet "Swan Lake"
Chaikovsky. Polonaise from the opera "Eugene Onegin"
Oginsky. Polonaise "Farewell to the motherland"
It is believed that Oginsky wrote a polonaise leaving the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, after the Russian troops suppressed the Kosciuszko uprising, in which he took part
Wieniawski. Polonaise N1
Glinka. Polonaise from the opera "Life for the king"
Many European dances of national origin are firmly included in the works of classical music. In the 17th and 18th centuries, these were the French minuet and gavotte, the Spanish saraband, the English gigue, rigodon, lure, burre, alemanda and chimes. All this is ancient dance.
The most common, including in Russia, received the minuet. The active life of the minuet lasted for several centuries. Originating as a peasant dance (derived from the slow folk dance dance of the province of Poitou), becoming later "dancing kings"In time, he became part of the symphonies. That was his path. The minuet of the Italian composer Luigi Boccherini remains popular today.
Gavotte, an ancient French peasant round dance dance, more courageous, energetic, not possessing the grace of a minuet. French peasants performed it easily, gracefully, with folk songs and bagpipes. In the XVIII century, Jean-Baptiste Lully was introduced into the repertoire of court and salon music. It is promoted not only by the dance teachers, but also by the most famous artists: couples performing gavotte, are transferred to Lancre and Watteau canvases, and the elegant dance poses are imprinted in porcelain figurines. But the decisive role in the revival of this dance belongs to the composers, who create charming gavotte melodies and introduce them to the most diverse musical works.
JS Bach. Courant and Gavot from 5 suites
Sarabande is an old Spanish folk dance. In 1583 banned in Spain. In 1618, in Spain, the Sarabande became, despite the ban, a court dance and acquired a solemn, majestic character; later she danced in the courts of other European kings (from 1625 in France). In France from the middle of the XVII century. Sarabande was like a minuet; also spread as an instrumental piece. In the 17th century, various types of sarabands coexisted in European countries (in the character of a solemn procession and more mobile).
Rigaudon is an ancient pair dance of Provencal peasants, very common in the XVII-XVIII centuries as a ballroom and stage dance, and later took its place in academic music, as a historical artifact. Most often, the village rigodon danced to the simplest accompaniment of a violin, as well as singing dancing and watching. Often the performers, together with the audience, beat the beat with percussion instruments in the form of sabo, wooden clogs. From about the end of the 17th century, Rygodon gained fame as a court dance, becoming more measured and solemn. At the same time, at the end of the 17th century, Rygodon entered the instrumental dance suite of French, German and English composers as one of the parts. Rigodon also took the place of honor in ballets and ballet divertissements of operas by French composers of the 17th and 18th centuries: J.-B. Lully,
Gigue – fast old British dance of Celtic origin. In the 12th century, the little violin, which was used for dancing, was called gigue; one of which got its name from this tool. Originally Gigue was a pair dance; however, among the sailors it spread as a solo, very fast comic dance. William Shakespeare in his plays emphasized the jolly character of the jig. Soon the gig penetrated into professional music. Pieces under this title are found in English virginal and lute collections of the XVI century. In the 17th century, jig entered the dance life of many Western European countries, although its development went on in different ways in different countries. At the turn of the XVII — XVIII centuries, the Italian Gigue acquired a pan-European significance. It was she who entered as the final part in the baroque sonatas and suites by Arcangelo Corelli, J.-F. Pamo, Bach and Handel.
Arcangelo Corelli – Sonata No. 10 in F Major – Giga
Bourrée (from fr. Bouree, from the verb of fr. Bourrer – to do unexpected or sharp jumps) – an old French folk dance. It arose presumably around the middle of the 15th — 16th centuries in central France and soon existed almost as general French, that is, it no longer had a clear regional distribution. In the 17th century, the burr penetrates the everyday life of the highest aristocratic strata of society and becomes a court dance. From now on, he becomes more stable, fixed form for the salon and court balls. The Court Burrete is a dance with a characteristic even size (the so-called “alla breve” is a size with a hard division into two, for example, 4/4 or 4/8, divided in half), an energetic tempo, and a precise rhythm. In the middle of the XVII century, Burre entered the stable form of the instrumental suite – as the penultimate part, after the saraband or paspier – and before the final burning. Georg Friedrich Handel in England and Jean Baptiste Lully in France were among the first to start including bourrés in their Grand Opera and Ballet.
Tango is a mixture of rage, pain, faith and absence.
Tango is a sad thought that you can even dance.
The tango melody can be composed with one finger, but with a soul.
Argentine tango is a sad thought expressed in dance.
Enrique Santos Discépolo
No time is able to cool the hot blood that boils in the veins of this dance. Today, it burns as much as it did at the dawn of the twentieth century.
"Suddenly everything began to stir, the crowd began to speak, moved, moved apart again, and the emperor walked in between the two parted rows, at the sound of playing music. Behind him were the master and mistress. The sovereign walked quickly, bowing right and left, as if trying to quickly get rid of this first minute of the meeting. The musicians played Polish, then known by the words written on it. These words began: "Alexander, Elizabeth, you delight us". Men began to approach the ladies and build in pairs of Polish.
Everyone parted, and the sovereign, smiling and not in tact with the hostess’s hand leading her hand, walked out of the living room door. Behind him were the host with M.A. Naryshkina, then envoys, ministers, various generals, who, without ceasing, called Peronskaya. More than half the ladies had gentlemen and went or were preparing to go to the Polish. "
So, it was the polonaise – Polish – that started the first ball of Natasha Rostova. This solemn dance-procession perfectly suited the ceremonial opening of a magnificent dance party.
Polish danced in Russia in the time of Alexei Mikhailovich. This was the first dance that young Peter the Great learned in the German settlement. In Polonese, members of the great embassy walked in 1697 at a reception in Coppenbrugge near the Elector of Brandenburg. Polonaise sounded at the weddings of comrades Peter P. Musin-Pushkin, Matyushkin, Schumacher,
Polonaise was dancing at the birthday of Elizabeth Petrovna and Catherine the Second’s wedding. In her reign began his career
The reign of Alexander the First – again "golden age" polonaise. Eyewitness testimony. The Englishwoman Marta Wilmot described the court ball in Peterhof on August 6, 1803: "They arrived at the palace by seven o’clock, all the rooms were open, and such a mass of people everywhere crowded that it was barely possible to pass. The emperor, empress etc., arrived, and the ball opened with a “long” polonaise. In the first couple there was an emperor with my familiar beauty Adadurova, they did not dance, namely, they went to the music, writing out the eight around the hall, another pair of sixty followed them grandly: it was like a walk, and each nobleman walked before me several times".
Count Mikhail Dmitrievich Buturlin, who returned from abroad, recalled Odessa’s balls in 1824: "Public balls in the club hall (the so-called casino) were given on official and solemn days and inevitably opened with a polonaise,
A famous French writer, Theophile Gautier, who visited Russia during the reign of Alexander II, in his memoirs told about balls in the Winter Palace: “In Russia, the balls at the court open with a polonaise. This is not a dance, but something like a procession, having its own distinct special flavor. Those present are crowded around to release the middle of the ballroom, where an alley of two rows of dancers is formed. When everyone takes their places, the orchestra plays music in a magnificent and slow rhythm and the procession begins. She is led by the emperor, who gives a hand to a princess or a lady whom he wishes to honor. For the imperial family were officers of the highest army and guard the palace, senior officials, each of whom gave a hand to the lady. The procession is moving forward, and new couples join it – some gentleman separates from a number of spectators, gives a hand to the lady standing opposite, and the new pair embarks on a journey, slowing down or speeding up their steps, in step with those who are ahead. Probably, it is not so easy to go, touching each other only with your fingertips, under the fire of a thousand eyes, so easily becoming ironic: here you can see the smallest awkwardness in movements, the easiest uncertainty in your legs, the most elusive missing in time. Military bearing saves many, but what a difficulty for the ladies! However, most of them are excellent in resolving the situation, and many of them can be said: “Et vera incessu patuit dea" (The words of the Roman poet Virgil: “The goddess is visible by gait”). Women parade under feathers, flowers, diamonds, modestly dropping their eyes or wandering with a look of perfect innocence, a faint body movement or tapping of a heel driving waves of silk and lace of their dresses, fanning themselves with fans as easily as if they were walking alone along the park . Walk with nobility, grace and simplicity, when they are looking at you from all sides! Even great actresses have not always succeeded! ”
"With a long snake with casting rings in all colors, a cheerful crowd, gliding across the floor, then stretched to its full length, then rolled up, playing in its twists with various colors; gold chains dully rang, dragging saber across the floor, rustling gorgeous silks, embroidered with pearls, shining with diamonds, decorated with bows and ribbons. From a distance came a cheerful talk, like the sound of the waters of this flaming stream.
The whole society, as it were, was sucked in, enjoyed its contemplation, seeing itself to be so beautiful, so noble, so lush, so courteous. Polonaise was a permanent exhibition of brilliance, glory, meaning"- so described the polonaise F. Liszt.
It is all the more surprising that this dance was born not in the county palaces and not in the castles of noble nobles, but in a Polish village. At first it was a male dance in honor of the end of field work, he was danced, returning home, to the music of a small orchestra consisting only of violinists. Later, the polonaise acquired the character of a wedding, ritual dance. From weddings, he, having slightly changed, moved to other holidays. The Poles adored their "gozony" – literally "walkable", "stepped"he "on foot"he "gensy" ("goose"), "great" ("big", "great"), "round" ("rounded", "smooth"), "free" ("slow"), "hoppy" (dance with hops). Polonaise was dancing not only with hops, but also with beer mugs, with candles and torches in their hands. You can imagine how beautiful it was!
Appeared in the 15th century, as a Polish folk dance, polonaise at the beginning of 16 "set off" on "parties" Polish gentry. http: //
And at the end of this century, penetrated the castles of the magnates, becoming a magnificent palace dance. Here he acquired his legendary unique brilliance.
Heinrich Valois (the future King of France, Henry III), who visited Poland as a king for a short time, gave the dance a royal scale. In Polonese, the courtiers presented themselves to the monarch.
With a light hand, or rather with a light foot, Heinrich Valois Polonaise began his triumphal procession in Western Europe. There he actually got his present name – Polonaise – "Polish" translated from French.
The polonaise is danced on 3/4, the basic steps consist of a sequence of three ordinary steps: a step from the outer (with respect to the partners to each other) legs to toe, a step from the inner legs to toe, a step from the outer legs to foot.
The next step begins with the inner leg. Thus, the pattern is obtained as follows: a sock, a sock, a foot. At the first step, a slight squatting (plie) on the supporting leg occurs with a slight turn in the direction of the forward leg.
Couples move according to certain geometric shapes: the promenade – the movement of the main step in a circle counterclockwise after the leading pair; the column – having reached the center of the end of the hall, the first pair turns left (to the top of the hall) and continues moving along the diameter of the circle, all continue to move after the first pair and gradually line up into the column; cross, fountain, fan, divergence, stars, garlands, lines, ladies solo, corridor.
But the main thing, in the dance, is not even the knowledge of intricate geometric figures, the main thing is posture, noble, affect-proud. Such a posture cannot be worked out; it can only be ensured by the presence in the character of the legendary Polish dancer "ambition". In this case, the shoulders unfold themselves, the head leans back, and the look rushes to the crystal chandelier sparkling with colorful lights.
"Never wearing this shiny and lush clothing (ancient Polish) would be difficult to assimilate the manner of keeping yourself, slowly bending down, suddenly straightening up, assimilating all the subtleties of dumb pantomime, common to their ancestors, while they were passing through a chain like a military parade, not never leaving idle hands, then twisting their long mustaches with them, now playing with the hilt of a sword. The mustache and the saber were an integral part of their attire, a source of pride for all, without distinction of ages, whether the mustache was fair-haired or gray-haired, and the saber was pristine and rich in features or jagged and covered with blood in battles. Often, rubies, hyacinths, sapphires glittered on a weapon suspended from a belt of cashmere, silk, embroidered with gold or silver; the belt closed with a buckle with the image of the Virgin, the king or the national emblem made a more stately figure almost always somewhat inclined to excessive fullness: often the whisker covered, not hiding from the eyes, the scar that caused the effect more powerful than all the rarest gems. Magnificent fabrics, jewels, bright colors were not less common among men than among women; buttons of kontush and zupan, as well as fasteners, rings, sultans of caps of bright colors, mainly amaranth, served as a backdrop to the Polish white eagle, or blue, which served as the backdrop of the Lithuanian knit (rogon). Shooting during polonaise, holding a hat with diamonds shining in velvet folds from one hand to another, animating and gesticulating with excitement, was a special art that the cavalier of the first couple, first of all, who, as the head of the march, followed rest. " (
But the Polonaise struck, and the Sub-Comic went out, He threw the hands of the Kuntush he was taller, Twists his mustache, like an old red tape, And asks Zosya to go with him as the first couple. Others are built in rows behind them soon. A sign is filed to begin, the Sub-Commander leads them.
Alei boots on fragrant ant, And the saber glows, and the belt is golden. He walks slowly, with a lazy expression, But it is easy to guess through all his movements And the feelings and dreams of a skilful dancer: So he stood before Zosya and looked for a gaze, Bows his head, wishing to whisper something; She does not even look, she is half-turned, having removed the Confederate, he froze in anticipation, Though she glanced, but she kept silence; He slows down and does not look away, She laughs – that’s a reward for a fan. To his rivals he threatens to sneak, Playing on the move with a dashing Confederate, Nadvinet on his eyes and move to the right, Nadvinet on one side of the table, twist his mustache slyly. Going – rivals rush after him in a crowd, He would be glad to slip away – to leave on any path; Raises his hand suddenly and freezes so instantly "I ask you to pass", – he will ask everyone sedately, Sometimes he will want to dodge to the side, To let a colored string sweep past, – But everything is in vain, the couples catch up again, And wind around him, and the old one is dissatisfied; The Podkomoriy undertakes the sword’s hilt, he foretells grief to his Rivals, Goes to meet them with an arrogant expression: Everyone makes way for his movement. But how long can the dancers reinvent themselves? All rushed after him, all exclaim in chorus: "Take a look! Maybe the last one in the povete, Who leads the Polish so! There is no other in the world!" Blithely couples walked, circled one after another, Deployed, spinning around again; As an endless snake changes the play, The rainbow of their beautiful suits changed: Men, ladies’, glittering ornate, Glittered with scales under the sunset gold. And their grass shaded green gloss. Thundered music "viva" flew for the dance"
Among the Polish gentry, the Polonaise acquired the warlike features of knightly dance, highlighting the bearer. "He is absolutely devoid of fast movements, genuine pas in the choreographic sense of the word, difficult and uniform poses; he was created more for the purpose of giving an image of arrogance than seduction; he had his purpose (a characteristic exception!) to mark a man, parade his beauty, his smart face, his belligerent and at the same time courteous posture. Even the name of the dance in Polish is masculine (Polski – Polish). Only by an obvious misunderstanding translate it by the word feminine (Polonaise)". (
Polonaise became a dance – a memory for the Poles, a dance – a memory of the past of the motherland. "In some polonaises, Chopin hears, as it were, a hard, heavy tread of people who come out with valiant bravery against all the most impudent and unjust in the fate of a person. At times it seems that brilliant bands pass by, like those that Paolo Veronese painted. Imagination dresses them in luxurious costumes of the past centuries: heavy gold brocade, Venetian velvet, satin, woven with flowers, soft velvety sable, sleeves loosely dropped on the shoulder, sabers with gold notch, shiny jewels, arabesque-inlaid turquoise, blood-red or golden shoes , strict bibs, Flemish lace, corsages, embroidered with pearls, rustling plumes, waving feathers, hats, sparkling with rubies or emeralds, shoes, embroidered with amber, gloves, fragrant with scents ralya! These groups stand out against the colorless background of bygone times, among luxurious Persian carpets, furniture decorated with Smirn mother-of-pearl, jewelry of filigree Constantinople work, among all this wasteful pomp of magnates, drawn from artfully sculptured fountains with gilded Tokay wine cups, poorly decorated with subjects, they could not find much. before entering foreign cities; horseshoes these. those who were dropped on the road should have testified to the amazed population about their princely generosity.
The genius of Weber suddenly returned to Polonaise its power and brilliance. He created a dithyramb from polonaise, in which all the former pomp was again found, which received further dazzling development. To reflect the past in a form whose meaning has changed so significantly, Weber applied all the means of his art. Without seeking to reproduce ancient music at all, he recreated the whole of ancient Poland in music. He began to emphasize the rhythm, began to use the melody as if for narration, he painted it with abundant modulations, which were not only allowed, but also imperiously required by the content itself. He filled the polonaise with life, fervor, passion, without depriving him of his characteristic traits – prideful, ceremonial dignity, grandeur, – both congenital and elaborate. The cadenzas are underlined by chords in which the sound of exposed sabers is heard. Instead of whispering lovers, low notes, full and deep, as if belonging to the voices, used to command, are heard in the deaf sound of sounds – and they are answered by the distant neighing of hot Arabian horses of noble, graceful build, impatiently hopping the ground, looking around meek, intelligent, full fire eyes, wearing with such grace their long caps, embroidered but the custom of the Polish magnates turquoise and rubies." (F. Liszt)
Oginsky’s polonaises are more like weeping, sorrowfully beautiful, belligerently tragic, hopelessly sad. That’s probably why he called his plays."Polonaise is not for dance". He wrote the most famous Polonaise. La Minor, "Farewell to the motherland", better known by the name of the author – Polonaise Oginsky.
Gradually polonaise "outgrow" framework of its purely dancing nature, becoming full "party" operas and classical ballets, many composers, from Bach and Mozart to Scriabin and Lyadov, used the form of polonaise for their instrumental compositions.
All the more surprising that the polonaise is still alive and how "acting" big ballroom dance. The sounds are solemn – the measured sounds, and in the ballroom is built up a line sparkling with the beauty of the ladies and the chivalrous dignity of the men.
The outcrop appeared in ancient times, and then it was treated with reverent respect. He served not to entertain mere mortals, but to delight the gods.
At the origins of the modern striptease are Egyptian. In Egypt, the tradition of being naked during a dance was associated with the cult of Osiris, the god who personified the life force of nature. This cult originated in ancient times and persisted until the I century BC. e. His followers were called the Almaites, from Arabic al-meh – "educated woman".
Almaya started the dance in a light raincoat, which she almost immediately threw off. Then she was released from a thin silk dress and remained in a translucent short shirt and trousers. A bare belly was considered a symbol of life, so the Almeans danced even at family holidays. The performance of the half-naked dancer at the wedding promised the young wife a happy motherhood. From Egypt, an erotic strip dance spread to the whole East.
Already in the XVIII century, the French historian Savary wrote about the Almeanas: "The obscenity of their poses sometimes crossed all bounds, their views, their gestures were so expressive that it was impossible not to understand them. As soon as the dance begins, they shed their modesty and sex with their cloak.". Even more outspoken were the dances of the Egyptian gypsies – gavazi. Dancing in the markets and squares in front of the common people, they threw off everything that was possible. Even the sleeves on their dresses come off.
The girls began their dance with a round dance, accompanying movements with melodious singing, then they threw off their thin silk cloaks, after which they disposed of other unnecessary clothing. Usually, the “rite” ended in prayer and sacrifice: naked beauties placed sweet fruit and bright flowers on the improvised altar, for which, in their opinion, they received praise from the deity.
In 39 AD, at the birthday party of Judah’s King Herod, his great-granddaughter Salome, entertained her guests. After "seven dance curtains"which the beauty threw off one by one, the enraptured king declared that he would give her everything she wanted. At the instigation of the mother Salome demanded the head of John the Baptist. This request has been fulfilled. So Salome – perhaps for the first time in history – used striptease as a weapon of revenge. The strip dance began to turn from a sacred ritual into a source of personal benefit for the performer.
The inhabitants of the ancient Greek polis of Corinth were taught the “science of overt dance” in special schools. In these schools, on a par with mathematics and music, the girl was taught the skill of deftrous undressing in public. The “graduates” of the schools were called the hetaras, the wives of the goddess of love, Aphrodite.
With the help of the dance, the priestess was supposed to bring the male audience to sexual ecstasy. The special secret of seducing the heteros was hiding in their clothes: the fold on the tunic was arranged so that at the right moment the clothes would quickly slip off the body, and the reapers would remain completely naked. The seed thus obtained was sacrificed to the goddess of love. In this case, the audience could not touch the dancer, or even move from the spot. The ancient Greeks did not care whether the heteras undressing in dance behave morally or, no, morally everything was beautiful for them.
Byzantium willingly adopted customs, entertainment, and spectacles from both Greece and the countries of the East. The rites of the Christian religion did without erotic dances, but never feasts.
The famous Byzantine Empress Theodore (500-548 gg.), The wife of Justinian the Great, according to the historian Procopius, before taking the throne was a circus and "entertained the crowd with outcrops and lewd gestures". Theodore’s green-eyed beast appeared in the arena only in a silk scarf tied in front like a belt, and complained that she was not allowed to perform completely naked. She was pleased to go against public taste. For example, dark hair in Byzantium was considered a sign of decency and housewife, and the collection of the future empress consisted of several dozen artificial wigs of all shades. At feasts, she adorned with blue curls, sprinkled with gold powder.
Once a year, at the festivities in honor of Poseidon and Aphrodite, Phryne left her dwelling, dropped clothes on the steps of the temple and, covering nudity with luxurious long black hair, went to the sea. After the ritual bathing, she lay down on the sand and allowed herself to admire everyone.
One of Phryne’s vain admirers, rejected by her, wrote a complaint to the city court. Frin was accused of corrupting the mores of the townspeople, which was punishable by death. When the prosecutor was already finishing his speech, Phryna Hyperid’s defender led the courtesan to the barrier and tore off her clothes. This argument decided the case: Frin was acquitted in the name of beauty and harmony.
In India, the strip dance was also part of a religious cult. The heavenly Apsara dancers in Indian mythology were the wives of gods. Their sculptural images coexist in Hindu temples with erotic bas-reliefs from the Kama Sutra. The devsasi dancers were considered the earthly incarnation of apsaras, whose dances told about the love encounters of gods with earthly women.
Devadas lived at the richest and most visited temples and had no right to marry. Parents themselves have dedicated their daughters to gods. From five to six years old girls lived separately from their families and studied the mysteries of dance. It took a lot of time: after all, every dancer gesture had a special sensual meaning. At the ceremony of initiation in devadasi – a symbolic marriage to God – the girls had to completely undress. In some temples, they were even subjected to ritual defloration. To overcome the modesty of the young "brides", the priests used intoxicating incense.
Devadasis took great care of the perfection of their bodies. To keep the chest from losing its shape, the girls put on a special light wooden frame of two halves, fastening on the back. He was decorated with gilding and diamonds and emphasized all the charm of a young body. Sometimes girls kicked him off and danced to the waist. But the devadasi did not have the habit of completely undressing during the dance.
In place of the liberties of late antiquity came the harsh Middle Ages. The naked body has become a symbol of sin. But the more severe the standards of decency became, the more coarse the manners of ordinary people became.
The inquisitors now and then announced beautiful slaves to witches and burned them at the stake, but even these horrors could not prevent the residents of the cities from admiring the street dance of frivolous, naked sinners.
Renaissance, returning to the customs of antiquity, made undressing to music an integral part of any holiday. Even the feast at the papal court could easily flow into an orgy with a striptease. It was performed mainly by corrupt women, for whom the main goal of the dance was to show themselves and attract customers.
Here is what their contemporaries wrote about the courtesans of the Renaissance: "Jumping and running, they raised their skirts so high that their white thighs were visible in a rather shameless way, and during the dance their round breasts came out of the corsage at the temptation of the lascivious people".
As a result in "female lane" fledgling youths and respectable fathers of families stretched. Therefore, at the end of the 16th century, clergymen declared a total ban on such dances and tried to evict women of easy virtues – courtesans – from cities. At dusk the Renaissance striptease became illegal, officially forbidden occupation. But any ban could be removed for money – just like clothes. Therefore, it was not possible to completely destroy the strip dance. In this era, striptease finally ceased to serve religion, becoming "delicacy" for the elite.
Tango was born around here in La Boca, a port suburb of Buenos Aires, in a part of it called Kamenito. At first this dance was very frivolous. To match the movements there was music, and the lyrics performed for it. They represented a kind of improvisation on the topic of the day, sometimes quite obscene. To believe in this today, when this dance became a model of elegant sensuality, is difficult. Tango, in fact, is a fusion of Spanish habanera, Andalusian fandango, Creole milonga and Negro kandombe. The word itself, apparently, comes from "tambo" – The names of the African drum.
At first, tango was a purely masculine dance. Like any port area, Kamenito abounded with squash of dubious reputation, whose visitors were entertained by learning a few moves for a couple. It was a kind of competition, in which the woman acted as judge. She preferred the most dexterous and inventive dancer. Happened, the loser, looking, as his rival removed under the arm of a lady, used the last argument – the knife. Therefore, the dance of the heart, the dance of feeling, the tango is also called the dance of death. In memory of those times today in Buenos Aires almost every tango show begins with the performance of male couples. Valeria Alvarez – professional tango performer: "We begin with this our performance – two men dancing in anticipation of a woman. Then she appears, who is looking for her only one. But this is a show. And in ordinary life, only man and woman dance tango.".
Today tourists go to Kamenito to look at the places where the most popular dance of the 20th century was born. Everything is permeated with the spirit of tango. Everywhere dancing couples. Street artists sometimes paint Kamenito in a very extravagant way. Numerous bas-reliefs on the buildings and sculptures depict tango dancers, the women whose favors they sought, and at the same time famous footballers, the benefit of Kamenita is Buenos Aires’s largest stadium. Even homes in the area are unusual. Their facades are painted in three, four, and even more colors. This happened since the time when the paint was expensive, and the building was allowed to what was left after the repair of ships. Enough for a half of the facade – well, a quarter – also come down. Nowadays, such a coloring is no longer dictated by necessity. It is, so to speak, an element of tango culture.
An exaggerated passion that permeates tango doesn’t really have a direct relation to reality. If only because tango is, in fact, chaste. There is a clearly defined border, to cross which means to kill the dance. No wonder Sigmund Freud wrote: "Dissatisfaction with Desire – a Motive Incentive of Fantasy". Marcella Murizho is a professional tango performer: "Of course, a woman should show in dance that she likes a partner. But a man still needs to deserve such an attitude. He is obliged for three minutes to become an ideal man, a man of a dream, for whom nothing but this woman exists in the world. Now, if he manages to show it in dance, if in response to his feeling the partner loses his head – the tango will work".
From the port squash taverns rather quickly migrated to secular lounges. Famous composers began to write music for him, and not only Argentine. Despite the rapid growth in popularity, the Catholic Church had a long negative attitude towards tango, considering it obscene. And only on the eve of World War I, did the Pope allow all Catholics to dance tango. The creative intelligentsia of Buenos Aires, who gathered in a cafe "Tortonny", did not pass the passion for new dance. Roberto Fanny – Cafe Manager "Tortonny": "In the middle of the XIX century, a family of immigrants from France decided to open a cafe in Buenos Aires, an exact copy of the one in which Parisian artists liked to gather. In the Argentine capital "Tortonny" quickly became popular in bohemian circles. The frequenter "Tortonny" was the genius of the Argentine tango Carlos Gardel. Here his masterpieces were born – he wrote poetry and immediately performed his new tango".
The Frenchman Charles Garde, who became in Argentina Carlos Gardel, is considered the founder of the classic tango. Jorge Luis Borges said about Gardel: "He turned tango from dance into a real elegy, a liturgy of refined verse and movement". Poems Gardel wrote on anything. A napkin with his autograph, randomly selected by the waiter, today adorns the wall of the cafe. Fanny: "None of the celebrities – neither Gardel, nor Borges, nor Cortazar – had their tables here. They came, ordered coffee or did not order anything, the rest were pulled up, they made up tables. We talked for hours. And we did not listen. For example, I did not guess that this is a celebrity. I just recently found out that I accidentally took a picture next to the great Borges. Hit history". Cafe "Tortonny" – The most expensive cafe in Argentina, but at the same time the most accessible place in Buenos Aires. Here you can not order anything … Just sit and look at people. And then write a brilliant book. Maybe it is in "Tortonny" Borges gave birth to the most exact definition of tango: "This is a vertical expression of a horizontal desire.".
The tango orchestra consists of a guitar, double bass, piano and bandaneona. The last one is the main one – in its sounding there is an inherent tango of longing, anguish. Bandaneon came to Argentina from Germany. Outwardly, he looks like our accordion, but unlike him, when stretching and mixing furs, he makes sounds of different heights. Despite the seeming simplicity of tango, to learn to dance it, it is necessary to expend a lot of effort. In Argentina, there are so-called "practice"where anyone can come – both master and novice. The situation is the most democratic – any clothes, invite anyone you want, there is no orchestra – they dance to a phonogram. In the hall there is always an experienced tutor, ready to show and explain everything.
Another thing is milonga. This is a respectable cabin with an orchestra, where anyone would not be allowed to come and be where necessary, as a rule, in the evening dress. People of the same circle gather simply to dance. However, they must comply with a specific code. In a milonga, for example, one cannot remain with the same partner for more than four dances in a row. An exception is made only for married couples.
Once a year, a tango festival is held in Buenos Aires, which attracts amateurs and professionals from all over the world. It is also called milonga, although in this event there is no hint of secularism, and the entrance to the hall is free. Here, too, come across beginners, but most – the people experienced. Enrique Simone is a professional tango dancer: "It happens that someone treads on a partner’s leg, but it’s not because we don’t know how to dance. On the contrary, sometimes there is a desire to diversify the movement, which is repeated thousands of times. From this and error". There is such a tale from Andersen "The beauty and the Beast". The girl with her love returns the monster its former beautiful appearance. Something similar can be observed in tango. The old man, with a rare artistry leading his young partner in the dance, himself begins to seem like a young man who cannot but be carried away. Perhaps it is an accident that tango was born in Argentina, and not in another Latin American country. But walk around Buenos Aires at night and you will understand that even the moonlight is trembling in the rhythm of tango – languid and passionate at the same time.