Tango Fire/Malvern Theatres


IN a world where the term ‘superstar’ seems to apply only to the celebrity-soaked universe of music, sport and film, it’s perhaps easy to overlook other spheres in which the participants excel.

Interest in tango has taken off in recent times, partly due to the phenomenal success of Strictly Come Dancing, which has become not so much a series, more a British institution and national obsession.

So, as in any art form that has caught the public imagination, those of us with an inquisitive nature develop yearnings to discover the real thing.

In this case, it’s Argentinian tango, and the pure, unadulterated version at that. Nothing less will do.

And leading the way must surely be Tango Fire, which was not only appearing at Malvern’s Forum Theatre direct from the West End, but by popular local demand, too.

Right then. Who are the superstars of this relentlessly sensuous dance style? Well, meet German Cornejo and Gisela Galeassi, who lead a breathtakingly athletic and at times gravity-defying troupe of dancers on an epic journey through the history of Argentine tango.

Make no mistake, the whole spectacle blows your mind from start to finish. You’d better believe it…

Recreating the atmosphere of the traditional Argentine milonga – working men’s club to you and me – this is not only a marriage of fabulous music and movement, but also an explosive celebration of the human spirit that at times seems to be guided by some collective telepathic force.

Anyone who has ever watched ballet will be familiar with the ‘lift’, a dramatic device whereby the man literally sweeps the woman off her feet to gasps of amazement all round.

Tango Fire takes this many steps further on, with lifts so complex and physically demanding that for a split second, you’re convinced disaster may well beckon.

But of course, the magic never falters. Every move seems to push choreography to its outer limits, into the stratosphere and perhaps beyond.

Yes, Tango Fire has to be seen to be believed. May they return to Worcestershire without delay.

John Phillpott