Juan Relmucao explores how queer tango is taking the dance beyond traditional stereotypes.
In 2001, a group of German dancers organized a Queer Tango Festival in Hamburg, and Argentina was quick to follow. In Buenos Aires, Augusto Balizano founded the first gay milonga, La Marshàll. In 2005, Docampo opened Argentina’s first permanent lesbian milonga: Tango Queer. These milongas aimed to serve specific communities, but were open to people of all genders, and have broadened their aims over time.
In the years that followed, the Argentinian government passed laws that enshrined the civil rights of LGBTQ people, from marriage equality to gender expression. “Queer dancing was a social need,” says Balizano, an internationally known tango dancer who has performed in Germany, France, Denmark and even Russia, which is not known for LGBTQ rights. “When La Marshàll started, it was revolutionary, and existed long before those laws, so I think the fact spaces like ours existed was a big contribution.” Together, Docampo and Balizano founded the International Queer Tango Festival, an annual event that is now in its 14th year, and that attracts dancers from all over the world...Keep reading on Atlas Obscura