Korea Tango Congress

The 1st Korea Tango Congress 

<17 couples of performers: From the left to clock wise, Song Yeonhee, Federico, Selene, Bongbong, Nabi, 
Carlos, Christina, Fish, Teabong, Kai, Dada, Emilio, Paso, Pandora, Kyoju, Eunji, Teo, Aritta, Ayoung, Jun, 
Zingzing, Yeobi, Naeil, Lawoo, Aran, Iri, Michum, Nikia, Elly, Florecia, Leoel, Dainel, Heekyung, Dawin>

The first Korea Tango Congress took place on July 11, 2015. Organized by the Korea Argentine Tango Association (KATA), this congress consisted of two parts: a symposium in the afternoon and a national all-star milonga at night.

The symposium, the first of its kind in Korea, was held at 4pm at the Samsung 2 Cultural Center. There were presentation and panel discussion on three themes: tango education, tango dance and music, and tango event organizing. The discussion was moderated by KATA board member Federico Hong Seok Kim.

For tango education, KATA board member Eunji Seong made a presentation on "Applying the Theory of Movement Learning to the Teaching and Learning of Argentine Tango". Another board member Ahyoung Han presented "The Influence of Body Balance and Depression on Seniors in Argentine Tango," in which she explored the possibility of using tango in the rehabilitation and psychological therapy of seniors.

For tango dance and music, board member Daniel Sungap Hwang presented "The Basic Elements of Tango Salon", in which he described the basic elements of tango including walking, candencia, pausa, dynamics and elegance, musicality and harmony. Board member Hyeonuk Jeon presented "The meaning and interpretation of Por Una Cabeza", where he suggested the connection of tango happens in the small time gap between the movements of leaders and followers.

For tango event organizing, board member Nabi Miae Na presented "The Making of Suncheon Big Milonga Estrella, with Passion and Communication", in which she shared her experience with organizing the biggest milonga event in our country since 2006 until now.  Board member Michum Yongsoo Kwon presented "The Accreditation of Tango".  In this presentation he explained the trend, importance, and effect of tango education within the context of the dance education institutions in our country.

After the symposium, we have received positive some responses from the participants, for example: "This symposium is more interesting than I thought", "I liked the variety of topics and multiple point of views", "This really helps me to understand tango more".

In the evening, the All-star Milonga started at 8pm at El Tango Cafe. There were about 300 participants. 17 couples of Korean tango teachers performed. The performers were divided into 4 groups with each group having 4 to 5 couples. Each group danced one song.  Here is the performance line-up:
Cafe Dominguez by Angel D'Agostino - Carlos & Seojeong, Darwin & Huigyeong, Eunji & Aritda, Paso & Elly.
El Cicatriz (milonga) by Juan D'Arienzo - Michum & Nikia, Teo & Juntango, Fish & Taebong, Hung-Yut & Hwayi.
Humiillacion by Juan D'Arienzo - Nabi & Bong Bong, Daniel & Isla, Dada & Kai, Federico & Selene
Recuerdo by (vals) Ricardo Tanturi - Gyoju & Ahyoung, Raul & Nael, Yoebi & Zingzing, Iri & Aran, Pandora & Emilio.

The MC of the evening was board member Yeonhui Song, who is also a professional voice actress. The performance was completely improvised as the songs were chosen by the DJ without prior notice to the performers.  Although the 17 couples all danced in different styles, they were dancing in the one spirit that is tango.

The first half of the milonga was DJed by Yojine, the second half by Xen Diego.  Although there were some problems with the air conditioning and the temperature was very high, there were many more dancers than expected. In between tandas people would go outside to cool off, drink some ice water or beer, and come back to dance again.  Overall people really enjoyed themselves and the milonga lasted until 3:30am.

Wrighten by Florencia Han
Translated by Leonel Chen