Thanks to the power of social media and the power of community, Jasmine Roloff and I are excited to announce there will be a Sidewalk Milonga at Bloor and Spadina (S.E. corner) every Monday until the weather pushes us out. Last night we held a trial run and, if we say so ourselves, it was a success! However vibrant the location and carefully chosen the music, it wouldn’t have been a success if 20+ accomplished dancers hadn’t taken the risk and turned up to entertain ourselves and the passersby.
We really appreciated the support of everyone who came including: Andy who provided the music and is busy finessing details for The Toronto Tango Experience along with Bulent of Practilonga, Steve Yee and Jennifer who rushed from work to be part of the early arrival team, Ilona of El Abrazo who had arrived home from B.A. that morning at 5:30, our new-to-Canada-from-Moscow dancers Louis and Konstantin who also arrived early to create critical mass, Svetlana who had also promised in advance to support our event, Iris who drew the crowds along with Louis as they performed high on a small granite domino, Soohyun, Banu and the other great T.O. dancers.
Strangely Jasmine and I had only met on Facebook prior to our co-hosting of Sidewalk Tango last night so major kudos to Jasmine for bravely going where few Toronto tangueras have gone before, particularly as she only joined our scene from San Francisco a few months ago. Her husband Stephen was there and ready to provide any assistance, as long as it didn’t require dancing. It was Jasmine who spied this spectacularly urban location and shared its potential on the Toronto Tango Junkies Facebook page. The vitality of city life justaposed superbly with tango as buses, garbage trucks and street cleaners ploughed by. A gaudy hot dog stand anchored our dance floor with its brilliant white light, a street person slept undisturbed and from the shadows fragrant cannabis wafted towards the dance floor.
Practically the location also works well. It’s very close to the Spadina subway station and there was ample parking along Bloor for $1. The Second Cup with its washrooms stayed open late into the night for those not enamoured with the beverage selection at the hot dog stand and there are lots of places to sit, either on the granite domino sculpture or on a low wall under the trees.
I’m still hoping for a couple of one-time outdoor milongas in some more romantic settings – Linda of Palermo Tango Club has a repeat of last year’s Kew Garden Bandstand milonga planned for mid August – but in the meantime, please join us Monday nights at 8:30 – 11:00 p.m.