History of Argentine Tango
The precise origins of tango (the dance and the word itself) are lost in the time and an unrecorded history. Usually accepted the possibility is that in the mid- 1800s, many African slave were brought to Argentina and began to influence the local culture. In the 1890s, the word Tango began to be used in connection with the dance. The word "Tango" may be had African origin, meaning "closed place" or "reserved ground". Or it may be derived from Portuguese (and from the Latin verb tanguere, to touch) and was picked up by Africans. Whatever its source, the word "tango" acquired the real meaning of the place where African slaves and free blacks joined to dance.
Originally it was only one of the many dances. The tango was born in African- Argentine dance venues attended by compadritos. Compadritos were young men, principally native born and poor, who liked to dress in slouch hats, with tied neckerchiefs and high-heeled boots with knives tucked occasionally into their belts.
The tango soon became better known throughout society, as theatres and street barrel organs spread it from the suburbs to the working-class slums, which were crowded with hundreds of thousands of European immigrants. The music resulted from the fusion of different forms of music from Europe.
The Argentine Tango received the influenced by the Tango Habanera. The Tango Habanera came from two kind of Tango: the Milonga with its influence in the guajira flamenco and the Tango Andaluz or Tango flamenco. The tango of that time was very different to the Argentine Tango we know today. In the early 1900s, the tango came spread of the worldwide; the first European tango fad took place in Paris. Towards the end of 1913, the tango had become an international phenomenon in Paris, London and New York. Later in 1914 more genuine tango stylings were developed, along with some modifications like Albert Newman's "Minuet" Tango.
The Argentina had its Golden Age by the 1930s. The country became one of the ten richest nations in the world and music, poetry and culture prospered. The tango came to be an important expression of Argentine culture.
The requirement of going underground joint with the eventual incursion of rock and roll sent the tango into decline until the mid-1980s when the stage show Tango Argentino opened in Paris. Once again Paris was position zero for provoking tango excitement worldwide. The show toured the world and motivated a revival in Europe, North America and Japan that we are part of today.
A brief history of some styles of dance: