Mariana Docampo Tango Queer Buenos Aires
Writer: Mariana Docampo
ll dance spaces (with their traditions, physical requirements, and gendered performances) can be thought of as political devices for the body and its practices. They are cultural zones where possible forms of life are rehearsed—often in an unconscious way. They set in motion new probable and improbable relationships among bodies. The act of dancing brings to the fore the power of effect, of being affected and affecting, and articulates multiple layers that carry the pulse and trace of the past and the dreams of the future that make up the foundation of our society and existence.
Buenos Aires Tango Queer takes these premises as a given and carries them one step further.Mariana Docampo introduces to the Buenos Aires scene Queer Tango. It, seeks to explore—perhaps as Nelly Richard would say—the capacity that dance has to interrupt and upend hierarchies of value, strict norms, and repressive totalizing concepts that limit the use of our bodies. The writing and the reading of this text make evident that the term queer is not bound to one unequivocal meaning. On the contrary, the adjective queer unfolds in all its contradictions, charged with vital and situational experiences, unstable feelings, and desires. You will not find in this text a theory in the strictest sense. But you will follow a biographical trajectory toward the genealogy of Tango and engage in a possible History that, however personal, becomes collective and even national, charged with the politics of being.
Laura A. Arnés
Mariana Docampo is the founder of Tango Queer Buenos Aires (www.tangoqueer.com) and is co-producer of the International Queer Tango Festival of Buenos Aires, presented annually since 2007. She is a writer and teaches Tango and literature, having received her B.A. in Literature from Buenos Aires. She is the author of six books of fiction (Al Borde del Tapiz, El Molino, La Fe, Tratado del Movimiento, V, and La Familia) and other writings included in anthologies. In addition, she edited Las Antiguas, published by Buena Vista, dedicated to reviving interest in the works of historic women authors of Argentina.
Mariana is co-author of Sara Facio. La foto como pasión. Sara Facio en diálogo con Guillermo Gasió y Mariana Docampo (Planeta, Buenos Aires, 2016) and co-screenwriter of the feature film Marilyn (Berlinale, 2018).
She studied with tango masters in various styles and trained in multiple of the most traditional milongas of Buenos Aires, expanding her tango salón and tango nuevo technique. Drawing upon her experience in conventional Tango, she focused her attention on re-envisioning the gender roles of partners in the dance. This approach allowed her to explore the dynamics of equal communication between dance partners and inspired a series of new seminars, workshops, and milongas beginning in 2005 (Milonga de Mujeres, El Desvío, Prácticas Tango Queer). In addition, she teaches Tango and is the producer of many queer tango events and festivities. She has taught at the International Queer Tango Festivals of Hamburg, Copenhagen, and Berlin and the Tango Solstice Retreat in Iceland. She has also offered tango workshops in Stockholm, Zurich, Marseille, Nice, Rome, Le Hague, Preston, Brighton, and London.
Press, article by Deutsche Welle (in Spanish),
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