April 23, 1995 |
It began one evening on a crowded dance floor in San Diego. Present were Alberto Toledano, a tango enthusiast, and a professional dancer who had learned just enough moves to accompany Toledano in his demanding and rarely seen routine--a tango done in the traditional Argentine style. Across the room, watching intently, was Loreen Arbus, a Los Angeles television producer. As soon as the duo concluded their turn, she strode across the floor to meet them.
March 30, 2008 |
The expat life turns the immigrant story on its head, plopping our sympathetic, cultural curiosity into an exotic locale-as-playground. Since Argentina's currency devaluation in early 2002, Americans have fled to Buenos Aires -- exotic, beautiful and relatively cheap -- following the story lines of '20s Paris or Prague in this decade.
May 24, 1986 |
These days Los Angeles theater tackles anything it cares to, light or heavy, small or large. But in an earlier day, when neither resources nor audiences were quite so abundant, the intimate revue, youthful, peppy, irreverent and expert, seemed to me to be the characteristic L.A. stage form. Shows like "Vintage 60" and "The Billy Barnes People" charmed many a transplanted Easterner in the late '50s.
March 19, 2000 |
It's opening night at Club Social de Avellaneda, a new tango dance hall in a gritty Buenos Aires blue-collar neighborhood reminiscent of deep Brooklyn. Bronze busts of Juan and Evita Peron grace the entrance of the building. Inside, a giant mural above the dance floor depicts local stevedores, meatpackers and factory workers of a half-century ago.
March 27, 2003 |
The woman closes her eyes and surrenders to the music. Softly, she places her cheek against the face of her dancing partner, a spotlessly dressed middle-aged man who transports her around the room with remarkable delicacy and precision. The woman is not what you would call a conventional beauty. But right now, gliding on the dance floor to the bittersweet strains of the bandoneon, lifting her leg to accompany an unexpected accent in the music, she is captivating.
March 27, 2003 |
Ever since Rudolph Valentino strutted onto the screen in 1921's "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse," Hollywood has been entranced by the tango, with actors from Fred Astaire to Arnold Schwarzenegger having taken the tangled dance for a spin. In the last two years, the tango has figured prominently into "Frida," "Chicago" and "Moulin Rouge," as well as the upcoming "The Guys."