Tango Maven

Argentine dancer Susana Miller is less interested in the tango for performance than for its social--and even therapeutic--value. The Buenos Aires native, who visits Vancouver Saturday and Sunday (May 8 and 9), began giving classes in the late '80s and is a leading teacher of a type of tango known as the milonguero. "It comes from the places where we go to dance, the milongas," Miller told the Straight during her current North American visit. "In Buenos Aires we don't call the tango that we do anything, but it's necessary to put a name on it for people who are not from Argentina. Most of the tango they see is an image--it's beautiful and romantic, but it's not the real thing.

"People come to tango because it's something they need for their souls," she added. "So when you feel empty or bored with life, or sad, or in a crisis, tango is a good place to go with yourself." Miller will be in Vancouver this weekend to give tango workshops and presentations from noon to 5 p.m. both days at the Polish Hall (4015 Fraser Street). On May 8 she will also, in her own words, "be the DJ" for a dance at the Yasel Dance Academy (4603 Main Street). For information, call 604-874-8707 or visit www.bailatango.com/vancouver/.