Juntos means together, close together, united, so we involve quite a few people - physically, aesthetically and morally - with the milonga, and we also do projects with other milonga organisers, such as Husky Mary's and the European encuentro Una Mirada. The Juntos team are below:
Why? We wanted to create a community milonga, where the interests of the ronda are primary, where the women are Queens and the men can relax because they can trust the men ahead and behind them, where dancers and the organisers share an active responsibility for standards on and off the pista, and where people are able to enjoy tango not only as an extraordinary dance but as a community experience and a social culture. We came to Argentine tango because dance has been Susan's life since she was four, and exploring this mysterious dance together was a way of getting to know each other. We hadn't imagined how hard it would be, nor the extent to which the tango would enrich our lives and continue to do so.
We first danced at Juntos in 2013, having heard about it from friends - not only was this Milonga in a lovely venue and had an excellent ronda, but the organisers Paul and Susan also had the courage to insist upon traditional códigos. For us tango is a community experience, epitomised by what is happening in the ronda, and like Susan and Paul we share the view that the organisers of a milonga have a duty of care for the people who dance there. It's what we've always believed in and worked to encourage at our own Bailar events, (www.bailar.co.uk). It's about playing nicely, close embrace, feet on the floor, dancing for our partners rather than an audience and above all it's about respect, and this is why we’re involved in Juntos. We’ve loved dancing at Juntos from the start, still do, and are very proud to be a part of it.
We have been dancing tango salon for several years and for us the social and community aspects are integral to what tango is; going to a milonga is equal parts dancing and meeting new and old friends. From our very first visit to Juntos we felt included in the Juntos family and love the down to earth, honest and warm welcome provided by Susan and Paul. We are proud and happy to be part of the Juntos setup - a milonga and community which actively promotes an environment of warm respect and kind attention and upholds the traditional codigos. A great place to dance!
Tango is my favourite time. Behind learning the steps is also a total control of our body movement which flows with the music - it is somehow relaxing and intriguing. Each tanda, which is carefully selected by the DJ for us, creates an atmosphere. Sometimes I wonder why I am so taken by the tango, it being a tradition so different to my own. I don't know the answer, I simply I like it.
Juntos is a special once a month milonga, presented to appreciate the traditional tango society here in London. Also my favourite way to spend a special afternoon.
Juntos, just like the name suggests, has brought me closer together to a wonderful community. I always look forward to the event as I know I will have a fantastic time. Paul and Susan are warmly welcoming and have always made me feel comfortable. After my first visit, I remember feeling I was walking on air, and as a result I try to come as often as I can. I really enjoy how relaxed it is. Even if I don't dance because I'm helping out on the reception desk, I am happy watching couples on the dancefloor having a good time. Cake and chatting are also included in the menu for that catch-up in between exchanges of cabeceos. And when I am dancing here, I feel as if I am the most important person to my dance partner. I leave with a smile, looking forward to more, and I try to take the respect and care I experience at Juntos and implement it elsewhere in my life. I like helping out Paul and Susan because they have shown such kindness, and they have this wonderful intention of making my monthly Sunday afternoon at Juntos as lovely an experience as possible.
Why do you give up a Sunday some months to wear those t-shirts and clear up around the milonga?
Louis: Because Dad makes us. And it has this community feeling that I didn't really get before, so it's nice that people are like that.
Lauren: Because Dad makes us. And it sort of feels like it's our family thing, and I asked Dad if he'd teach me tango so it's kind of cool to be there and watch.