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Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Argentine Tango School. 
Photo courtesy of Philadelphia Argentine Tango School. 

Get your tango fix at the 'Philly-Philly' mini-festival

It takes two to tango — and the "Philly Philly" mini-festival hosted by the Philadelphia Argentine Tango School has you covered.

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If you're itching to get your dancing shoes on and glide across a ballroom floor to some of the best traditional and contemporary tango music in the world, then this weekend is your chance. 

The Philadelphia Argentine Tango School (PATS) will be hosting a special "Philly Philly" Tango Mini-festival, kicking off on Friday, Sept. 21, with a milonga (a social dance) at the Barnes Foundation hosted by Meredith Klein, PATS founder and director, with other women artists joining in as part of the Barnes Foundation's "Fierce Women" Bash. 

During the day on Saturday and Sunday, there will be workshops offered by tango masters Marcela Trape and Mario Ferraro at the PATS studio, and on Saturday there will be a Milonga Qilombo featuring El Cachivache Tango Quintet at the Lithuanian Music Hall, with performances by Trape and Ferarro. The evening will also include a live taping of Klein interviewing El Cachivache for an episode of her podcast, Tango Stories, in partnership with USALA Radio. 

Klein, who grew up just outside of Philadelphia, first started dancing tango seriously after college and eventually moved to Buenos Aires to pursue her passion professionally. She said that the mini-fest has something for anyone who is interested in dance and music — even if you aren't a devoted tango practitioner or dancer. 

"Tango is really unusual in that it's a social dance, it comes from the streets of Buenos Aires," said Klein, explaining that because it is a form of dance "based on walking" it is accessible to people of all ages and experiences levels. At PATS, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, Klein said students range in age from teenagers up to people in their 80s. 

Klein noted that the performance by El Cachivache Tango Quintent at the mini-festival is a particular draw for the weekend's events.

"They're a really important force moving tango music forward and we're really excited to bring them here," said Klein, who said the band is unique in the way that it mixes traditional tango tunes with original contemporary compositions. 

The mini-festival is one of over 100 events and social dances PATS holds throughout the year, including the Tango Festival in May. 

For the full schedule this weekend and more about the PATS studio regular offerings, you can check out their website here

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