Tango Topics | Exploring Your Dance

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The Circular Ocho Cortado

The Circular Ocho Cortado. First let’s get the language out of the way. The phrase “Ocho Cortado” translates from the Spanish to English like so: ‘Ocho’ translates as the number 8. ‘Cortado’ comes from the root Spanish -AR verb ‘CortAR’ which translates as the infinitive ‘to Cut’ (or to Slice). However, you’ll notice that there’s an ‘ADO’ ending on the verb, which is akin to an ‘ed’ ending of a verb in English as in ‘HelpED’ or ‘LikED’, or ‘WalkED’. It’s the past participle version of the word. 🙂 However, when you put them together the translated phrase almost makes no sense. So we have to move things around a bit for it make sense to an English speaker. So ‘8 Cut-ed’ makes absolutely no sense, however if we invert the words so that it becomes ‘Cut-ed 8’, it starts to make a bit more sense. Typically when dealing with other languages we end up having to infer the meaning. ‘Cut-ed’ in English makes no sense, however…it’s secondary meaning does, ‘SlicED’! A ’SlicED 8’ or Half of an 8! So quite rightfully an Ocho Cortado is a HalvED 8! Language lesson over….

There are two varieties of the Ocho Cortado, the Linear variety and Today’s Tango Topic: The Circular Ocho Cortado. In the case of the Linear Ocho Cortado, it really is a linear step. Meaning ? That it’s stretched out along a walking line. The vocabulary itself is really great for rounding corners, when you need to ‘cut’ a 90º corner. They’re great for musical interpretation elements. They’re great for cross play. And they’re even better when inverted! 🙂 However, the Linear Ocho Cortado is only taught in certain places. Tango Topics talks about the Linear Ocho Cortado as if it were the default Ocho Cortado. That is not the case. In other parts of the world, The Circular Ocho Cortado is the default and the Linear variety is weird one. In certain places the Linear variety is almost never taught, so you’ll never see it on a social dance floor at all. In certain places, the Circular variety is the odd man out and you’ll never see it either. So today without further adieu Tango Topics presents – The Circular Ocho Cortado. The OTHER Ocho Cortado. [Editorial Note: This site will be cleaning up the language for the Ocho Cortado in the other posts that deal with this to make the clear distinction of Linear vs. Circular.]

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Have you seen all our Argentine Turns ? We showcase 8 types of turns: 1.) The Follower’s Molinete. 2.) The Milonguero Turn. 3.) The Rock Step. 4.) The Ocho Cortado. 5.) The Walking Turn. 6.) The Calesita. 7.) The Colgada Turn. 8.) The Media Luna.

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What is a ‘Circular’ Ocho Cortado ? Put simply it is leading the Follower to a Forward Ocho. However this is a very specific kind of Ocho that we only use for teaching purposes. In this particular case, that teaching Ocho is what’s sometimes called (and this site referred to as such) a ‘Linear Forward Ocho’. They’re called that because these ochos don’t go anywhere at all, and in fact they’re done directly in front of the Lead on a line. Hence the ‘Linear’ part of it’s name. 😉 The Lead invites the Follower to a Linear Forward Ocho across their body (to the open or closed side of the embrace, usually the closed side), and then interrupts that motion to invite a change of direction, and that change of direction is the Ocho part. The ‘Cortado’ part comes from the fact that only ONE HALF or one side of the Ocho is danced. Typically an complete Ocho is both sides of the 8 or the Applied Disassociation. However in this case, only one half is done, and as a result we have a Cortado or Halved 8. What makes it Circular is the fact that the Ocho itself is the circular part. The curvature of the opening step into and out of the Ocho (the applied disassociation part) Cortado where the Follower is at first stepping next to their Lead and then back to the same position again.

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Hey!!!!! Isn’t there more to this post ???? Where’s the Lead’s Perspective, the Follower’s Perspective, and the Dancing Perspective parts of the Post … ??? These very helpful, extremely descriptive, and FREE parts are still here, and you can see them too, just scroll to the bottom of the page, and register. Registration is a hassle! We know. But it is also free, and who doesn’t like free stuff!!! You get a whole bunch of other stuff that can help you with your dance, and the rest of this post. So go register, then login to your Tango Topics Library page and then select Articles, and you’ll see this article with all that good stuff in there. Just scroll, register, and then read! Easy. No ? 🙂

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The Reality of WHY You Need This: There are many moves, steps, patterns, and figures to Argentine Tango that are really cool. What you may not realize is that most of that stuff is ‘fluff’, they’re nice to have, they’re nice to know, but honestly, you’re not going to use them that often! Mind you this is one side of the argument. This ain’t that! This piece is one of the more venerable selections of Argentine Tango that you will use frequently like Walking, Milonguero Ochos/Milonguero Turns, The Follower’s Molinete/Traveling Ochos, or The Argentine Cross. Tango Topics take this stuff very seriously, and we say that because we use this stuff ALL – THE – TIME! Our case is that you need this stuff because > This is all about foundation, or one of the Seven Foundation Steps that we use all the time to create the dance that we know as Argentine Tango. That’s why! 🙂 That said, you do actually need to watch this stuff. You can learn what you need from this video and then apply it. No lie. No gimmick. As always YMMV and to remember that the video itself is only a stepping stone! You will need some private lessons to go along with it to get the ‘feel’ of things. That is the reality of WHY you need this stuff. So subscribing for a few months to TangoTopics to get what we’re on about wouldn’t kill you. Further, it would probably help to hear another person saying what your current tango teacher has been saying all along. Think of this stuff as one more reminder that you absolutely need to hear.

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About The Video. This video comes in at 31m:28s in length in 9 Sections. Follower and Lead Technique is explained in the video. 

Section 1 – Follower’s Perspective – 00:12:43
Section 2 – The Difference Between Linear & Circular – 00:01:07
Section 3 – Leading Perspective – 00:03:09
Section 4 – The Open Side Circular Cortado – 00:02:44
Section 5 – The Close Embrace Version – 00:03:52
Section 6 – The Lead’s Error! – 00:01:34
Section 7 – The Lead’s Head – 00:01:34
Section 8 – Lead/Follower Footwork Detail – 00:03:41
Section 9 – Closure – 00:00:22

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The Missing Information. Dearest Reader. TangoTopics is glad that you want to read this Topic, so that you can dig a little deeper into your foundation, into the music, into the codigos of the dance. However, you’re missing three important parts to this Article: The Follower’s Perspective, The Lead’s Perspective, and The Dancing Perspective. Which can change your thinking by informing of some important pieces of information that you may not necessarily be aware of. Watching a 5 minute video will not help you to change. Change is a concerted effort and requires a little thinking on your part: Becoming a Freeium User! As the name implies, it’s FREE. Register. You get to see everything above, and a whole lot more! 😉 Have a nice day.

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Why should you subscribe instead ?  Several reasons.  1.) Probably the biggest reason is to save a boatload of money. Buying these things outright isn’t cheap. Besides when you buy you only have access to the one video. Subscribing, on the other hand, gives you access to everything else so you can see the foundational material that goes with this stuff. 2.) Even if you’re a Free User, you’ll get access to free tips that aren’t available to anyone just reading the post like this one. 3.) Sometimes there are slightly different versions of the videos, that add a bit more content for the free user vs. an unregistered user. 4.) Because the Dancing Perspectives (Lead, Follow, and Dancing) are hidden to the open user. And that’s where all the information is at, unless you actually subscribe. Until you do, those very important textual descriptions of what’s going on for both Lead and Follow you want to read. 5.) And the real reason you should subscribe ? If you’re used to YouTube videos where you’ll see a performance, those Youtube videos don’t explain or walk you through how these ideas work! That is why! What you’re seeing is a presentation, a performance. Not how things work! And what you really need to see is how things work, and more importantly why they work! This website shows you that and more! 

Remember that what you’re seeing is a couple that is performing for the 15th row for a room full of people, they’re not social dancing. Whereas this website is all about ‘Social Dancing’  or how to make things function on a social dance floor. Social Dance floor ? Your local milonga! They’re showing flashy moves as a presentation! But not stopping and talking about how this works, why you’d want to put that piece of vocabulary there, or how to make things fit. This website is all about those things and more!

You could watch those videos and thereby spend your time, trying to infer, and figure out how things may work in that particular situation. Bend your body this way or that, twist and force this position or that. Place your foot here or there and figure it out. This is known as Tango Twister.  Which can be a lot of fun, but more than likely it won’t help you, because you’re missing something: The explanation from an experienced teacher showing you how to properly excute this stuff from a Leading Perspective as well as from a Following Perspective!

The goal of YouTube videos is to get you to study with those teachers in person. The goal of Tango Topics videos allows you to work at your own pace, in the comfort of your own space, so that you can play them over and over again to improve your understanding of the vocabulary or technique being described to therefore better your dancing experience. The goal of classes and workshops is to get you to come back over and over and over again, thereby spending more money with that teacher. This website and the videos under it are here to act as a resource for you to help you to improve your dance. Pay once and you’re done.

Eventually, one way or another you’re going to pay for this lesson, either here and now, or with them. TANSTAAFL! The difference between that lesson and this ? Is that you get to play this lesson over and over and over again. Further still, there are supporting materials (other videos) that help to explain the language and the underlying technique of how and why things work, so you can easily reference those things in the corresponding articles that go with the material, and or any language in the Tango Topics Dictionary. 


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