Luxe Milonga — the new all-night milonga in Portland! Come join Remanda Xiang and Jenna Rohrbacher at this fresh, modern, and fun event!

Archive for September, 2011

2 Workshops with Burak Özkösem

Check out his complete BIO at Luxe milonga website:

here is a video link of his performance (You can find a lot more videos just by searching his name on youtube):

Workshop No.1 Topic: Social Evolution of Beleos & Ganchos
Oct.30th 2:00-3:30PM

This workshop is designed to help dancers from all levels to refine their boleo and gancho technique as well as for “boleo-shy” followers to develop skills on applying ganchos and boleos for social dance floor. After the workshop, Dancers will become competent and confident on executing flawless, dynamic, social dance floor-friendly boleos and ganchos.

Workshop No.2 Topic: Neo-milonga method for followers and leaders
Oct.30th 3:45-5:15PM

Description: We will explore the ways to understand and analyze the differences between milonga lisa and milonga traspie as well as how to link to each other. After the workshop, Dancers should be able to apply the concepts into their dancing and become skilled milonguero(a)s.

Cost: $12(advance), $14(at the door), No partner is required for both classes, will have great leads there as taxi lead to ensure everyone has a partner to dance with.

** Advance voucher can be purchased via Remanda Xiang


Alex’s Tango Quartet Bio

Quartet Bio: 
Formed in 2011, the Alex Krebs Tango Quartet brings together an all-star cast of musicians and features all original tango compositions and arrangements by Alex Krebs and Andrew Oliver for dancing.
  • Alex Krebs – bandoneon
  • Andrew Oliver – piano (one of the most respected jazz pianists in the Pacific NW)
  • Erin Furbee – violin (assistant concert master for the Oregon Symphony)Mike Murphy – bass (bass player for the Vancouver Symphony and bassist for 3 Leg Torso)
Here is a video of their quartet playing:

Below is what alex sent out to the tango community about the process of how he came up with this new band idea as wel as composing new tangos:

On the Process of Composing New Tangos”

   The first tango I composed was when I was at Reed College in 1998.  I was excited by my first attempt, but quickly realized that it was a daunting task to try to compose something new and exciting, especially since there were thousands of tangos already out there, and put composing aside.   Since then I have been arranging tangos: that is, taking tangos that have already been composed and giving the melodies to certain instruments, adding harmonies, variations, counter-melodies, etc. to make the composition come to life in an ensemble.   I have listened to many recordings, read every book that was published in Spanish by tango musicians in Buenos Aires on the subject of composing/arranging tangos, did transcriptions, did revisions…  I felt like I was starting to get closer to sounding like the originals (closer, but still very far!), when I had an interesting conversation with a pianist from Buenos Aires.  He told me that in Japan there are already orchestras that sound exactly like Pugliese, exactly like D’Arienzo, note for note, but he felt that that had already been done.  Where was the sound of these Japanese musicians?  He told me he was less interested in hearing copies of the originals, but listening to complete originals: what would tangos from Portland sound like?   

    Andrew Oliver has played piano with the sextet many times, has done quite a bit of transcribing and musical work for me, and has a superb ear.  When I approached him about composing new tangos he was interested and we got to work.   We decided to try to stay completely within the genre of tango — that is, not trying to fuse it with jazz or other world  music.   Would we be able to fool people into thinking this maybe could have been composed in Agrentina in the 1920’s?  That was our goal.  We used our ears to dictate whether some musical element made one of our compositions sound “more like tango” or “less like tango,” even though it was hard to describe intellectually why we were making those decisions.

    The result, so far, is 7 original tangos: two milognas, two valses, two slow, lyrical milonga camperas, and one crunchy, straight-up tango for dancing. (Both photos by Okke VanOudgaarden)

DJ: Burak Ozkosem from Montreal for Oct. 29th Luxe Milonga

To those luxe milonga supporters & fans, sorry that we disappointed you with our canceled July event! Here’s the good news:

  •  Jenna, ex-Luxe milonga co-owner,  has decided to pursue her career and life in NY for a while. However,  Our wonderful rapper and tango dancer/teacher Momo Smitt has decided to join Luxe milonga with me to continue creating unique, refreshing & luxury experience for all of you who come to Luxe milonga! Welcome Momo!!
  • Luxe milonga is going to happen again on Oct. 29th (5th Saturday of Oct) at a brand new location with beautiful wood floor, huge space, chatting/social room, coat room, kitchen…etc. 
  • This time we are going to have Burak Ozkosem from Canada Montreal be our special DJ for the night!!!!!
Here is Burak’s Bio:

Burak Ozkosem, El Turco is recognized for his creative and expressive style and his bold and sensitive interpretations of both traditional tango music and the eclectic, non-traditional music that he incorporates into his djing and instructional repertoire.

He is a popular and attentive teacher. His current focus is to develop Tango Nuevo analysis methodology to understand and teach the essence of Argentine Tango more effectively to different populations in North America. Though he is considered a virtuoso of “Tango Nuevo”, in his dancing Burak is not adding anything new or “modern” to Tango. Every movement he uses is taken strictly from the Tango vocabulary. He respects the music and responds in the traditional places; his syncopa, or rhythm, is flawless. What he does is deconstruct the usual tango marcado (marking) and reconstruct it in his own surprising way. Burak’s nontraditional use of the vocabulary prompts curiosity, and inspiration for other dancers.

He is the creator of prestigious Tango events in North America like Tango Joven Festival 2006-2007, Chicago Tango Week 2008-2009, Miami Beach Tango Marathon. He also co-founded the ARTango Center in Chicago, and his current project with Kristine Berg, Tango Social Club in Montreal. Although he is based in Montreal, Canada he frequently teaches and performs in Miami, New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago. 

Burak will also teach a couple workshops for us. To those of you who are lovers of Nuevo Tango, his workshops are the NOT-TO-Be-Missed events!!  here is a video link of his performance (You can find a lot more videos just by searching his name on youtube):