For the last couple of weeks visiting tango performers and teachers Pablo Nievas & Valeria Zunino have been in South Queensland running workshops and conducting private tango lessons as guests of Friends of Tango.
While I was in Buenos Aires in July I was able to have several group lessons with Pablo and Valeria and found them to be amongst the best teachers of the now approximately eight different teachers that I’ve had lessons with. Tango is a specific skill in itself but so is teaching and like many skilled practitioners it’s a rare person who can both perform and teach. This is their greatest strength in that they have the teaching skill to benefit from their technical excellence as tango performers. The single most impressive thing that I saw them both do was to explain the good and poor technique while the partner would act out what was being explained without having to be told what was coming next. It was as though they were reading each others minds. I suppose when you live and breath tango with a person you can’t help but know how each of you think.
And to show you how they can relate to each in the dance, here is the performance of the three dances they did at the Friends of Tango, Pequeno Nino Bien, Milonga on 21 November 2009 in Brisbane.
I’ve finished work a while back on the Narnia movie again. I was initially on for a month, which is where I wrote the previous post, then off for a month, then back on for 2.5 weeks and now yet again I’ve not worked for a few weeks. Since I finished up I’ve been thinking about
Book Stands for the Movie
this crazy life of mine and how it flies in the face of the Western method of work, whether it’s valid or irresponsible of me, if I’m burning my bridges for my future or if maybe I may actually have something here.
When I finished I knew I had to do the whole readjust again back into the mental head-space of just hanging out doing my thing again. It’s very easy to plug into work, as once I’m on a Job there is a first morning where I get up and head off to another first day and from then on it’s routine. The longer I work in that one place the more ingrained the routine becomes and the more comfortable it all is. That is until the routine becomes boredom. Then another type of stress starts where I question my existence and waste of life in that environment and yet again I have to leave to find myself.
That is very much the way it is for most of the permanent work that I’ve done and the great advantage of working contract is that normally I can stick it out long enough until the project is complete which hopefully isn’t too long and then I get the change that I need. So film work often suits me well in this regard.
Finishing and readjusting to no work is not as easy as compared to starting as I don’t have the distractions that work gives me from what I call the “Void” or “Nothing”. However there are two ways to approach this.
Get another Job is what everyone asks and expects. In a lot of ways that is the easiest option. But for me after all these years of doing the variations on this lifestyle I know that it will go the way that I’ve outlined above. Normally six months and I’m a spent force, bored and ready to move on. It even tends to manifest in physical disturbances in my body brought on by the low but permanent levels of stress.
Embrace the Void. Now it’s not exactly Nothing. It’s not as though I wake up sit down and do nothing until I go back to sleep that night as I have my personal projects and day to day order to keep functioning so there is a whole range of activities and a constant supply of new and interesting opportunities turning up daily to keep me active. However compared to the 40 hour week, 48 week year work model it appears to be a void that requires filling.
The challenges with embracing the Void is that there is no order projected onto the future, no planning and no surety. It’s very much living in the moment and taking the opportunities as they arrive on a moment by moment time frame. That flies in the face of the Western model of how to get things done. I’m supposed to have lists, goals, plans for what I want to achieve and a step by step approach to achieving them. I’ve read the books on goal setting and that’s the way they say to achieve what your after. Sure that’s the model and if you have a specific goal that is what you do to achieve it, I get that.
In July I travelled to Buenos Aires for 3.5 weeks with some friends to soak up the Argentine culture, to experience the city where tango originates from and still resonates around the world.
I’ve been learning tango for 2.5 years now with Ross and Sandra, my teachers from Friends of Tango Each year they return to Buenos Aires to learn from their teachers and share with those interested, the feel and culture that is this European city in South America. I thought this year I would take the chance to see what all the fuss was about.
I’ve already created quite a bit more information with some interesting observations from both my fellow travellers and locals over at my other podcast site Your Story. There is even a podcast you can freely subscribe to.
Additional to the audio that I produced I’ve spent the last couple of months off and on editing this video. I’ve attempted to make it as interesting as possible for everyone, knowing that we all get bored with the home video/slide shows or friends travels. It’s up to others to decide if I’ve achieved that goal.
I’d appreciate any feedback either here or over on the viddler site where this video is embedded from. Hope you enjoy 🙂