Is musicality female?

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Just another milonga discussion

In a post a long time ago I was wondering if in any language the word music is considered masculine. This post is asking the question of whether musicality is also usually a feminine word or not in other languages and if there is some reason behind this phenomenon.

In a milonga some time ago a friend who is a very nice DJ and a (wonderful to watch on the dance floor) dancer sat next to me and we started talking about the importance of musicality. We agreed that it makes a huge difference when you know how to express the music and even more the emotions it conveys. Discussing the issue we also agreed that as a leader it makes a huge difference in the joy and satisfaction you get out of a tanda when your partner also knows about musicality and somehow tunes in with you on the same wavelength. This is when the magic happens! And then we seemed to also make the same observation… somehow men… leaders… seem to be interested more in musicality than women/followers. I don’t know if it’s true… maybe it’s just another biased observation but I hear it all the more often.

The big misconception

OK. To be honest, since the role of the man is the one who initiates and suggests the movement it is inevitable that they will be the first to get interested in the topic. Somehow there is a common misconception that the woman needs to just be good at understanding and executing the “commands” of the man. Musicality seems to come a bit later as an interest for ladies/followers. That maybe explains the phenomenon but then… isn’t this maybe the mirror of the leaders’ trap of wanting to learn more and more sequences and steps because that’s what they think that the women want?

In search for completeness

As I have written in many cases the simplicity when accompanied by the appropriate musicality and emotion can create a much more powerful result than the many complex fancy moves. I realized it myself from the responses of my partners when I started paying attention to them. But Tango flows both ways. It’s a dialog… not a monologue. The same kind of satisfaction, pleasure, and emotion a leader gifts the follower, he also receives back. When I dance with a partner who gets the music and the emotion of the tanda it’s like I get back the same gift I give even bigger and shinier! Otherwise, it feels… empty.

But let’s leave aside the communication and the dialog part. A dance where only the leader contributes to the musicality is half. It misses an essential element. Tango as a dance has a strong element of duality… the female and male… the complementary roles that together make one whole entity. If the female part of the musicality misses… where does this leave the result? It’s like a half-completed painting… like a song with rhythm but no melody… do you get the point? It’s incomplete because it takes two… TWO… to Tango.

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Tonight’s Goodnight Tango

So is musicality a male or a female? After all this rant… I would dare to say… none and both! Musicality, unlike music, is both male and female at the same time and therefore it doesn’t have sex because, unlike the sexes which are incomplete,… half… musicality must be complete! Otherwise, dancing can feel so empty like the agonizing loneliness that Goyeneche so masterfully describes with his unique phrasing in tonight’s Goodnight Tango.

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