Thursday, April 19, 2007

Ordering Whom Around?

Konstantin commented on one of my blog posts yesterday. He said: "You make it sound like someone is ordering you about (like a child, so it is even more offensive, the implication is) - where to go and where not to go, and is also claiming you don't support tango if you don't come to dance at venues other than Casablanca. I am not aware of anyone actually claiming these things or ordering you around, though."

Several things occurred that started me thinking this. The first was a private email that in part accused me of being under political influence by those at Cafe Casablanca. The second was a "private" email from the then president of Tango Vita regarding the proposed split from the cafe. This stated in part:

"So, where do we go from here as a group of tango dancers in Victoria? We think it’s quite obvious that we need to find a new home for Tango Vita… We are actively looking for a place that… above all else has to be a non-commercial space that we can rent as a community. Until we find a new home for Tango Vita, where are people to dance regularly. Should we be sensitive to those who want to continue with tango dancing on Friday, Sunday and Tuesday nights at Café Casablanca and have Tango Vita dancing on nights that do not conflict with this schedule? Again, this is another difficult question to answer. Over the years, even long before our relationship with Café Casablanca, these three nights of the week were the traditional nights of dancing for Tango Vita. There have been numerous attempts to establish tango on a Saturday evening, but ultimately it hasn’t worked. It’s not clear why—it just doesn’t. So, as we consider a new place we need to keep this in mind."

As a non-member (at that time) of Tango Vita, and only a member of the tango community, I felt I was told where I would be allowed to dance, that the venue would change and I would have no choice, something I didn't agree with. To Konstantin, I would say, remember, I didn't ask for the split in the first place. If you don't feel comfortable at the cafe, fine. If you want to dance at the gallery, go ahead. My problem was always the whisper in my ear (in actuality) telling me that I was disloyal to tango if I chose to dance at the cafe. Hey, so am I also disloyal to tango if I go to Seattle to dance, or to Buenos Aires? Just wondering.