With the participation of a Cuban couple in the 2019 World Tango Championship, held in Buenos Aires, dance enthusiasts here had the opportunity to experience the unique way we have appropriated one of the world’s most widely appreciated dance genres.
Irma Beatriz Peniche Silva and Enrique Guisado Triay participated in the Tango Pista category (dance floor), after having previously qualified during the First Caribbean Tango Championship, held in Havana in July, where they took first place among 15 duos from the region.
The contest here was on a par with those customarily organized around the world, leading up to the Argentine event, officially called the 2019 Festival and World Championship of Tango.
“Cuba is an unbeatable venue,” said Italian Barbara Cicero, who along with the Cuba’s Yailet Suárez served as coordinator of the competition, with the support of the national tourism industry.
“There is an extraordinary tradition of popular dance and a taste for dance is part of Cuban identity, so it is not strange that there is also an affinity for tango,” she continued.
In the modality of Tango Pista, Russian Maxim Guerásimov and Argentina’s Agustina Piaggio placed first, among 40 couples from Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Colombia, Spain, the Netherlands, Uruguay, Egypt, Japan, China, and of course Argentina, selected from more than 1,500 contestants in the regional qualifiers.
Unlike the Stage Tango modality, which features choreographic innovation, in the Tango Pista, dancers cannot separate for the duration of the music, the body of one member of the couple must, at all times, be embraced by the other.
It was an unforgettable experience for Irma and Enrique to attend the World Championship. “We got together as a couple by chance, since we were both attracted to tango, but didn’t know each other,” explained Enrique Guisado, who added, “I like Tango Pista dancing better; it is more intimate, more meaningful, and we Cubans accentuate body expression at the level of the torso and face; that distinguishes us.”
Congratulating the couple, Argentine ambassador in Havana, Javier Figueroa, highlighted the passion with which the Cuban couple “made tango your own. I’m sure that sooner or later there will be Cuban champion.”