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Tango Truisms - Book Released

posted Dec 31, 2014, 5:46 PM by Sophia de Lautour   [ updated Dec 31, 2014, 6:01 PM ]
Tango is the most enriching, scary, fitful, superconscious and unconscious, fulfilling, satisfying, exasperating, deep and shallow (at the same time), experience you will ever have in your entire life. If you ever want to have your head handed to you, and at the same time be equally thrilled you should try tango. It will literally change every facet of your life in ways you haven’t even begun to imagine.' 
- Miles Tangos

This blog often shares the advice and musings (a.k.a 'Tango Truisms') of US-based tango teacher, blogger and social dancer Miles Tangos. Miles has now released his new book Tango Truisms: The Not-So-Secret Guide to Better Dancing'. 

The following interview (between Miles and his Alter Ego 'Expandalonga') explains the purpose of Tango Truisms and his new book.


Expandalonga: How do you describe Tango Truisms?

Miles: Tango Truisms are daily reminders about tango technique, tango music, tango history, tango codigos. It’s currently 850 (with a planned 365 more) daily truths that your teachers forgot to tell you about not out of neglect but rather time, as there is only so much you can fit into an hour long lesson! Each Truism is no longer than a page, and can be easily read and digested for a byte sized world.

Expandalonga: Why did you decide to write it?

Miles: The book? I didn’t set out to write a book. I set out to write a series of reminders for my students. The first batch was about 100 or so, and I just dumped it on them. Suffice it said, they were more than a little surprised and overwhelmed. These were roughs of what would later become the full set of Tango Truisms. And the only reason I had written them in the first place was because I was tired of repeating myself in classes and private lessons and wanted to move on to other things with them. What I discovered was a few of them had shared it with their friends and so on. And before I knew it, these things had taken on a life of it’s own. More than a few of those people asked that I share them publicly, and said that it had helped them to re-visualize the dance in a very clear way. After enough of those emails I decided set up Facebook page, and then started to share them one at a time, one every day. It wasn’t hard to write the first 360 or so. They just came. The next 500 or so…that was challenging at times. But I sat myself down for about about week or so and put out a structured theme of ideas… and that became the first batch of Tango Truisms. A year went by and I was teaching in Germany and I had discovered that I had more than enough for a book. So I put my Truisms together and came up with over 460 and of them taken from the daily page. I added in another 100 or so that had never seen the light of day yet and that became VOLUME 1 of Tango Truisms. Volume 2 is currently in production and will be out shortly.

Expandalonga: Do you think the Tango Truisms get more complex with time?

Miles: Yes and no. Yes because there are topics that require more and more background information, and then again no because I have a simple treatise in mind…that the Truism itself can not be longer than an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper. So I end up editing myself a great deal. And some Truisms get split up in rather inventive ways into other Truisms. Topics for later discussion.

Expandalonga: In tango lessons, stories and cultural aspects can be elements to unlock the mind. Do you think Tango Truisms can have this effect?

Miles: It does that already. People tell me this all the time that Tango Truisms has given them pause for reflection, which is the whole point of the work in the first place.

Expandalonga: And when you teach, do you share Tango Truisms ideas?

Miles: I have stopped teaching private lessons, group classes, and only lead intensive study at this point. As a study guide, book 1 and now volume 2 ARE REQUIRED READING source material.

Expandalonga: Are you applying (or trying?) all the tango truisms in your own dance?

Miles: DUH! I teach this stuff….of course I am applying it. Otherwise I’d be a hypocrite! I am not one of those teachers that says, “dance what I say, not the way I dance”.

Expandalonga: Would you say tango is a philosophy?

Miles: Yes. And no. It is from a certain point of view.

Expandalonga: Which is the first Tango Truism that comes to your mind now?

Miles: Number 1. “Tango is a walking dance!”.

Expandalonga: If you had to share a moment of tango with readers who do not dance, what would you choose?

Miles: Tango is the most enriching, scary, fitful, superconscious and unconscious, fulfilling, satisfying, exasperating, deep and shallow (at the same time), experience you will ever have in your entire life. If you ever want to have your head handed to you, and at the same time be equally thrilled you should try tango. It will literally change every facet of your life in ways you haven’t even begun to imagine.

Expandalonga: Do you have other writing projects in mind?

Miles: Yes. I want to tell the story of how my grandmother and grandfather met, fell in love, and ultimately married. It ends with where the story started to begin with, and the line that she always told me to remember when meeting girls. Which I won’t repeat here because it’s a really good line and it’s the central theme of the book.

Author: Miles Tangos

Here are the links to the book which comes in two volumes: