Tango's passion reaches far and wide. As if you'd need proof, Finland hosts The Seinäjoki Tango Festival with over 100,000 attendees for the 5 day festival.
From their website, a little history on the Finnish Tango:
are few phenomena that have travelled so far and
yet managed to root themselves so deeply into the
Finnish soil as the tango. Not only was the original
tango welcomed and fostered in Finland, but over the years it has also developed a new identity and
become part of our way of life.
The Finnish tango is one of the few genuinely original things in Finnish music and popular entertainment. We may forget this ourselves every once in a while, but visitors to our shores cannot help but notice it, and fall in love with it.
The first Finnish tangos, classics since their birth, date back to the 1930s. Both the form and the spirit of tango in the Finnish manner were crystallized during the Second World War. As people were brought apart, sometimes for good, feelings of longing and loneliness grew more intensified.
However, there is a lot of hope and buoyancy in the tango; in fact, it is made up of the same ingredients as life itself.
Great Finnish composers, led by the two masters Toivo Kärki and Unto Mononen, have created many tango experiences for us all to share. Similarly,
many singers are chiefly remembered for their tango interpretations. First Olavi Virta, Henry Theel, and Veikko Tuomi in the 1940s and 50s, and later Eino Grön, Reijo Taipale, Taisto Tammi, Markus Allan, Esko Rahkonen and many others, including the younger
crop fostered by the Tango Festival.
At the turn of the 1960s the word was that the tango is passé. This was followed by a period characterized by some as the "comeback" of the tango.
However, singers and musicians who had continued to perform tangos, and particularly the Finnish folk which had continued to dance and listen to them, knew well that the tango was never out of
fashion. On the contrary, some of the fads supposedly ousting the tango actually vanished as suddenly as they had appeared.
Neither would the Seinäjoki Tango Festival have experienced such a huge success without the intimate relationship of the Finns with the tango.
-Written by Ilpo Hakasalo-
Image courtesy of Martti Hautamäki for
of Tango Singing Contest 2000: Erkki Räsänen, Antti Raiski, Esa Nummela, Mira Kunnasluoto, Hanne Kannasharju and Jaana Pöllänen
Mayor Gavin Newsom and the City of San Francisco will declare Friday, May 18 2007...
Mestre Carlos Aceituno Day
in gratitude to the artistry and dedication of our beloved teacher
Founder of Fogo Na Roupa and Mestre of Omulu Guanabara
The ceremony will be in conjuction with the Annual SFCarnaval Reception
Friday, May 18 2007 @ noon
San Francisco City Hall
Plan on coming in full Carnaval regalia with a previous Fogo Na Roupa
carnaval costume (preferrably Fogomorphosis) email metziquez@aol. com for further
All of Mestre Carlos' students and friends who wish to support please come
wearing red and white in solidarity with Mestre's work. Lets show the city how
many of us he impacted!
For our friends around the world... a short bio of Mestre Carlos Aceituno:
Carlos Aceituno’s artistic
background encompasses various forms of music and dance study: Latin, Afro-Brazilian,
Jazz, modern, and African. In 1989, he formed the award winning Carnaval Group Fogo Na
Roupa; consisting of both a performing company and a Grupo Carnavalesco (Carnaval Group),
Fogo embarked on what is now more than a decade of Afro-Brazilian parade, performance and
The group’s repertoire has broadened through his strong 27-year commitment the
study, training and teaching of Capoeira. Carlos is currently working with the leadership
of his teacher, Mestre Preguica, a first generation student of legendary Mestre Bimba, the
founder of "Capoeira Regional". In May 2000, he received
the prestigious title of "Mestre", the first one achieved outside of
Brazil in the United States.
Carlos Aceituno stems from a legacy of Afro-Brazilian dance and music culture,
pioneered in the San Francisco Bay Area by Jose Lorenzo’s Batucaje. He continues to
be a stalwart in the community with the consistent programming of annual travel study
tours to Brazil. He has worked directly with such master artists as Jorge Alabê, Mestre
King (renowned pioneer of Afro-Brazilian Dance in Salvador da Bahia, Brazil), Rosangela
Silvestre, and the Bale Folklorico da Bahia.
While educating and encouraging others, he conducts annual study tours to Brazil with
Fogo Na Roupa. These tours serve to enhance his knowledge of Regional Dance and Music Art
Forms while keeping abreast of ever-changing popular trends. He trains children, youth and
adults throughout the Bay Area and currently teaches at the Mission Cultural Center in San
Francisco, and Citicentre Dance Theatre in Oakland.
Under his artistic direction, Fogo Na Roupa’s performance highlights include Bay
Area opener for Brazil’s popular Olodum and collaboration with prominent Bay
Area jazz ensemble, Mingus Amungus, opening for Carlos Santana. He also
directed Fogo Na Roupa’s performance at the annual KMEL Summer Jam during the
‘96-’97 season. In 1999, he led Fogo Na Roupa in the opening of internationally
acclaimed Brazilian recording artist, Carlinhos Brown, at the Galleria Trade Show
Center in San Francisco.
Under his direction, Fogo Na Roupa has earned the grand prize of "Best Brazilian
Contingent" in the San Francisco Carnaval Parade for multiple years. Additional Performances: Brazilian Independence
Celebrations in San Francisco, the Afribbean Festival, Oakland’s own Carijama
festivals, Chinese New Year Parade, and TV appearances on KGO, Channel 7.
We were deeply saddened by the devastating news of the untimely passing
of Carlos Aceituno on September 27, 2006.
NEW YORK, NY May 04, 2007
—While most of the city sleeps, a growing number of New Yorkers get
together late at night to dance tango. The tango parties are known as
milongas , the Argentinean slang name for social tango dances born in
Buenos Aires in the late 1800s. Two decades ago, only a couple of
milongas existed in Queens. But today New York hosts up to five
milongas any night of the week....
So, how did this all start? In 1985 the show Tango Argentino came to
town for what was supposed to be one week. The show turned out to be
what the New York Times called The Season's Improbable Hit. During its
run on Broadway, it was seen by Madonna, Sinatra, Kissinger and
Every time I go to the dance, with all my pain and all the tragedies in
life and all the disappointments, for two, three, four hours, however
long we're there: La vida es una milonga. The whole life is a ball.
May's Photo of the Month is quite unusual.... Belles of the brawl:
Quechua indigenous women slug it out with one another at the
traditional Tinku Festival in Macha, Bolivia. Tinku, an ancestral
ritual that predates the Spanish conquest, consists of rival villages
engaging in hand-to-hand combat. The ritual supposedly ensures richer,
more prosperous crops in the coming year.
Here is the editor's pick for your celebration. I've been listening to them for years and happy to share my favorite with you. The most amazing electronica is coming out of Mexico and the group on the cutting edge is: Nortec Collective Nortec Collectivedescribe themselves as sampling instrumental parts from dusty tapes of tambora and norteno band rehearsals & combining the use of electronics and dance music aesthetics with the hard, driving sounds and rhythms of traditional Northern Mexican street music.
Nor-Tec = a contradiction of 'Norteno' (of the North) and techno/ tambora: traditional music forms of the Northwest of Mexico.