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El Tango es el producto cultural más auténtico del país de los argentinos
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Cruzada — From cruzar - to cross; the cross: A cruzada occurs any time a foot is crossed in front of or in back of the other. The lady’s position at 5 of the 8-count basic. May also be called Trabada.
8-Count Basic (Academic Basic) — The first figure usually taught to beginning students after the walking steps. See Basico. The 8-count basic includes elements which are used throughout the dance, although the complete figure itself is not much used for dancing socially. The name refers to counts in music, however, the man is not constrained to rigidly mark a step on each count or beat of the rhythm. He is free to hold or to syncopate, or cut the beat, as the music moves him or as space on the floor around him allows. The figure may be danced into or out of at various points and is not always entered at the beginning and there are shortcuts within the 8-count basic. For instance, the man may lead the lady from the cruzada at 5 directly to 2, or he may close his left foot to his right without weight on 7 and step side left directly to 2. So in actuality the positions which the dancers move through at each step are numbered as reference points.
In closed dance position, the steps are as follows:
- The man settles his weight on his right leg, placing the lady on her left, and holds. Or, variations: the man steps back right, the lady forward left. Also, the man may settle on his right leg, placing the lady on her left, quickly extending his left leg to his left side to point then closing back to his right leg without weight, as the lady mirrors his action with her right leg. Or the man may step through with his right leg between the partners, leading the lady to mirror his action (espejo) by stepping through with her left leg, remaining in closed position although briefly resembling promenade position.
- The man steps side left, the lady side right, with the man stepping slightly further than the lady.
- The man steps forward right in outside right position keeping his upper body turned toward the lady in contra-body, the lady back left paralleling the man and also in contra-body. This is a common point of entry to the figure which the ladies should be aware of.
- The man steps forward left, the lady back right stretching slightly more and seeking the man’s center.
- The man closes his right foot to his left with weight and rotates his upper body to face forward, leading the lady to cross her left foot in front of her right with weight (cruzada) as she finishes moving back in front of the man. Many variations for the lady begin from this position.
- The man steps forward left inside his partner (to her center), the lady back right.
- The man steps side right, the lady side left.
- The man closes his left foot to his right with weight, the lady her right foot to her left.
- Steps 1 through 3 (sometimes 1 through 5) are known as the salida. Steps 3 through 5 are known as "walking the lady to the cross." Steps 6 through 8 are known as resolución.
The Man’s Part
With your partner in dance position, shift your weight to your left leg, inviting the lady to stand on her right leg:
- Extend the right leg back (from the hip) and push off the floor with the left foot to send yourself straight back. When dancing at milongas, proceed with caution so you don’t kick or bump into another couple. The act of to avoiding bumping into other couples as well as the ability to continue dancing without pause when boxed in is one definition of what is called floor craft.
- Once you’ve landed and shifted weight to the right leg, push off the floor with your right foot and step to the side landing on your left foot.
- Turn your shoulders to the right (this is called contra-body) to face your partner which opens up room in between both your bodies. Step forward through the space with your right leg positioning yourself in outside-partner position.
- Still outside-partner with your weight on your right foot and shoulders facing your partner, push off the floor to send your partner forward (this opens up space between the two of you) as you step diagonally (forward and to the left) with your left foot.
- Rotate your body to the left to send your partner back in front of you which causes her to cross her left foot in front of right into the Cruzada position. As she crosses, you right foot closes to the left so that both feet are together. Soften your right knee to shift the weight from your left leg to your right as you rotate your upper body slightly to the left. This leads the lady to free herself from the Cruzada in preparation to perform another movement starting with her right leg/foot.
- Push off the floor with your right foot and step forward with your left.
- Push off the floor with your left foot and side step to the right.
- Complete the Resolution by closing your left foot to your right. If you are going to repeat this pattern from here, soften your left knee so your weight shifts from the right leg to the left, and start from Step 1 above.
The Lady’s Part
- Slightly extend the left foot in front of your body and push off the floor with the right foot to send yourself forward landing on your left foot (don’t step on your partner’s feet!).
- Once you’ve landed and shifted weight to the left leg, push off the floor with your left foot and step to the side landing on your right foot.
- Before stepping, feel your partner’s lead to rotate your truck (upper body) to the right to match his (called contra-body). With your torso now facing his, extend your left leg back, from the hip, and push off the floor with your right foot to step backwards. Your partner will be walking outside of you (walking outside partner) and you do this.
- Still outside-partner with your weight on your left foot and shoulders facing your partner, your partner will take a large step forward and to the side. When you feel this lead, take a step back and diagonally to the right, making sure to land on the inside edge (blade or toe) of your right foot.
- As your partner releases his dance hold from contra-body position, he will rotate to his left causing you to twist into your Cruzada position. Remember, cross your left foot in front of your right so that your left calf rests on your right schinn. Both feet should be facing forward towards your partner.
- As your partner rotates his upper body briefly to the left, you will be able to release the cross position by placing all your weight in your left foot as you right foot frees itself and prepares for a resolution. As you’re transitioning from the cross to putting your weight on your left foot, the right foot stays light (knees touching) and draws on the floor like a pencil. With the right leg free, extend it back and push off the floor with the left foot to step backwards for the first step in the resolution.
- Land on your right foot and prepare to push off the floor with the same foot causing you to step to your left, landing on your left foot.
- As you land on your left foot, shift all your weight onto it and slowly drag the trailing right leg to close next to the left foot.
- If you are going to repeat this pattern from here, soften your right knee so your weight shifts from the left leg to the right, and start from Step 1 above.