Quickstart to Tango – Argentine and American Tango


 Please know that Jeff is ready, willing, and able to teach you right here in Providence, RI regardless of your present level!!

 Here’s What They’re Saying About
“Quickstart To Tango©” …..

Jeff Allen has created an excellent addition to his “Quickstart To Social Dancing©” series. “Quickstart To Tango©” focuses on the skills needed for proper tango posture and technique. ‘Attitudes and Priorities: Mental and Physical’ offers useful advice for approaching both Argentine and American Tango lessons, new choreography, practice, and setting goals. Teachers, recommend this book to your students !
Karla Shriner – Managing Editor, Dance Teacher Now Magazine

I have seen hundreds of books and videos. This book is one of the best !! Professionally written in an organized format. I would highly recommend it for everyone.
Wayne Eng – President, Dance Vision International

Jeff Allen is tackling a complex and difficult subject with intelligence and integrity !
Daniel Trenner – Founder, Bridge To The Tango

Approachable for the novice dancer and informative for the more expert. Armed with this text, a novice can become competent in the rudiments of the Argentine and Ballroom Tango.
Mary F. Roche, M.Ed.

“A unique how – to book combining the skills of Argentine Tango and American Tango. The author sets a state of ease and comfort for the beginning dancer, giving a clear understanding of a dance step, timing and exercises. Consideration of body movements, from toes to head and fingers, along with the preparation of readers’ attitudes through the presentation of history and discussions, allows a full appreciation of the many figures described for each style. A book not only for beginners.”
Patti Johnson – Editor, Dancing USA Magazine

The Argentine Tango-dance is an esoteric dance based on quietness of mind and body contortion, linked by a full awareness of the here and NOW. After reviewing Jeff Allen’s book, Quickstart To Tango, where he compares and explains different styles of tango around the world, and also establishes the components of what makes a good Argentine Tango, I said to myself, “This is a great start! At least someone has stopped talking and has started to write!” In Argentine Tango, we have a saying: “To progress quickly, you must close your mouth and move your legs.”

In Argentine Tango, body action is based on contortion, the torque of the body, which gives rise to CBM (contra-body motion), as well as walks across the
3 lines which construct your axis, CBMP (contra body movement position). These factors have to be well understood, and Quickstart To Tango explains them very well. But these actions cannot happen without correct posture, poise, frame, and contra-frame, which are also described in an impressive manner in the book.

Change of weight has nothing to do with just walking. That is the essence of Salon-style Tango, which has nothing to do with the Tango we used to dance in the Salon. This is fully based on one complete circle divided by two people establishing space to dance between them and changing weight together. The book does a good job of explaining this is an easily understandable manner.

Argentine Tango is a stepping tango developed by undirected steps in opposition with other styles of tango, which are based on direct walking steps. This is also explained well in Jeff’s book.  “Rule of Step Then Turn”: This is so important for beginners! And very refreshing for those who are used to more advanced turns such as the Torcimiento, Destorcimiento, Enrosque, Rulo, Tornillo, Planeo, Recorte, etc. Thank you for this chapter Mr. Allen.

“Improvisation: Recombining your knowledge and knowing exactly what you are doing all the time” is another fabulous section in this book. This section describes how the music, including musicality and rhythm (owned by the man), time (owned by the woman), and Timing (owned by the couple) dictate the
improvisation. The couple is the 3rd entity, an investment of a man without ego and woman without impatience. Jeff discusses this approach to improvisation with great clarity.

“How To Practice”: Jeff talks about this subject in specific and useful terms. Personally, I would say that if you are practicing or learning without guidance, you are just repeating injuries, and you retrieve yourself not in dancing in a milonga, but keep practicing. You have to find out where practice stops and dancing starts. That’s why you need a guide. Your muscle memory doesn’t detect what is right or wrong! It just records it.

“Lead and Follow”: Man starts as a leader and merges into a follower, while the woman starts as a follower and merges into a leader. This process can happen in single step. What a concept! And an important one that I agree with 100%.  This is described perfectly in Quickstart To Tango.

“Navigation”: The essence of the mass circulating around the floor following LOP (line of progression), counter clockwise, and orientation, the use of LOD
(line of dance) counter clockwise by every couple. This need what we call “floor-craft,” which you will find in this book!

Quickstart To Tango also contains a full history of the Argentine Tango, as well as a very interesting conversation with Carlos Gavito, star of Forever

I strongly recommend this work by Jeff Allen, which I consider of great value. If you want to start tangoing, please do it correctly. The fabulous exercises and analogies contained in Quickstart To Tango will really improve your understanding of the Argentine Tango.

The man should learn how to think. The woman should learn how to wait.

In the early 1980’s, I had the opportunity to teach Jeff Allen his first Argentine Tango lesson. I told myself, “This man is a genius.” I was very
impressed by his level of understanding and speed of assimilation. Very recently, I had a conversation with Jeff, and I told him how impressed I was
with his writing He said, “Listen Ive, I am not a specialist in Argentine Tango.” I replied, “Jeff, without any pretension, I am a specialist, having
danced for 50 years. Given your writing in Quickstart To Tango, if you are not a specialist, nobody is. Thanks for your humility.”

Ive Simard

Ive Simard: 1. Argentine Tango Artist (choreographer-teacher) 2. Author of El Tango Agentino, Milonga, Val Cruzado Syllabuses 3. Co-founder of El Mundo del Tango 4. President of ATMA (Argentine Tango Masters Association) 5. President and founder of AFTU (America First Tango University) 6. President of “Le Vaudeville”, America First Tango Theater 7. Dual Fellow of ISTD (Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance) 8. BA in Dance Art


“Quickstart to Tango” is the only book in print that contains the technique and development of either style of Tango. The book is packed with 60,000 words  devoted to Argentine and American Social and Ballroom Tango. It fills the educational void for Tango dancers that are increasing daily in numbers. dditionally, there are histories of Tango’s development and a conversation with Mr. Carlos Gavito the star of the Broadway Show “Forever Tango” and one of the most famous Tango dancers since Tango’s Golden Age.

Second in the Quickstart Dance series from the author of America’s number one selling dance book “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Ballroom Dancing“.

“Quickstart to Tango” covers the basic choreography in both the Social-American Ballroom and Argentine Tango.

This text is presented in a logical and cumulative format that includes all the basic skills necessary for the successful learning, partnering, and teaching both styles of Tango.

Exclusive interview with Carlos Gavito from the Broadway cast of the smash hit “Forever Tango”. Also included are the history, myth, and lore of both styles
of Tango.

An approach to Tango from a kinesiological point of view with an approach to mental and physical attitudes and philosophies.




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