Javier & Andrea Workshop in Seoul, May 2008

Javier and Andrea came to Korea for the first time in 2007. They visited us again in 2008 for a week of workshops and milongas. We feel this visit was even better than the first - here are some photos and observations.

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Before the big event there was a planning party with Korean-style Chinese food at our home. Thanks again for all the friends who helped us out. They did everything from setting up tables, collecting class fee, shopping, cooking, to taking the pictures that you are looking at. In case you are wondering, the tall handsome caucasian guy between Hung-Yut and Hwayi is Dan Boccia, our guest DJ from Alaska.

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We organized 10 classes over 4 days, each with a limit of 20 couples. Three classes were all level, three were intermedaite, and four were advanced. The classes filled up fast - they were all full within a couple of weeks of announcement.

When the students signed up for classes we tried to advise them to take the classes of the right level. We felt it was important for them to start with the basics and build their dance on a solid foundation. It worked better than the first year (which was basically a free for all), but there was still room for improvement.

After each class Javier & Andrea would do a demo to an entire song to illustrate the class material. We think that's a great way to teach - showing the students how to put what they learned into a dance.

A group photo after one of the classes. Most participants were from Seoul, but we also had people coming from as far as Busan, Japan, and Taiwan!

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On Saturday night we had a big milonga at the same studio where we held the classes. The studio (called RingoPop) only opened two months ago. We were very lucky to be using this brand new venue.

We decided to put tables and chairs around the room to create a rectangular and clearly-demarcated dance floor. Sure enough the line of dance was quite orderly. It was not crowded like Buenos Aires, but as more and more people got onto the floor navigation was still very manageable. At the end we had over 180 people joining the party!

The DJ of the night was Emily from Hong Kong. She also came last year to DJ for us and we were thrilled to have her back. She did a great job and kept people dancing past 4am. Emily co-runs and DJs her own milonga in Hong Kong - here is her website: http://milongadelcorazon.blogspot.com/.


[The People]

[The Dancing]

[The Other Dancing]

The highlight of the evening was of course Jaiver & Andrea's performance. The did two tangos and a milonga, and then an encore tango. Here is a video of the milonga:

video

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The Farewell Milonga was held at Tango O Nada. It is the oldest and most established Tango bar in Seoul and it opens 7 days a week. We put tables and chairs around the room like we did at RingoPop and ran the risk of having a smaller dance floor. It worked out quite well, although it probably took some getting used to for people who had been coming to O Nada for years.

[Farewell Milonga Ticket]


Dan Boccia was the DJ of the night. Here you can see him enjoying a bowl of Ggam Bbong (spicy Korean-style Chinese noodle soup) before getting to work. On his shoulder is his DJ Mascot, Red Fox.

Dan is one of the most-established DJs in the US and it was great to have him with us for this event. He was professional, courteous, helped out with everything, and left everyone with a great impression. One of the things that impressed me the most about his DJing was that he used some of the cleanest-sounding music files around and he tweaked the sound system to perfection. I could hear all the nuances in the music so clearly that I just wanted to dance!

Javier & Andrea was in a good mood that night and they did three more dances to say goodbye.

Last but not least, a cake to show our appreciation, and fotos, fotos, y mas fotos!!!

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Before the end, we would like to thank everyone again for helping out. A special thanks to the owners of RingoPop, TZ and Pascal (the two cool guys on the right), for providing such a great venue!

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