A few years ago, I made the decision to dance Argentine Tango. In the years that followed that nervy start, I’ve found myself enriched, challenged and emboldened by a dance that forces both sexes to lead and to follow, and, more importantly, to learn how to listen to each other.

It changed the way I interact with people. Its Latin American bravado educated me about the importance of physical communication. And there is no better form of communication than the Tango’s famous embrace. With time, I found myself learning to feel out the subtle nuances of a woman’s body, how the delicate weight of each step ebbed and flowed with feminine grace, as my solid but controlled movements surged and broke with each whim. I search for that balance now, in each and every moment I spend in the company of the fairer sex. It is now instinctual, and I am glad for this gift.

But that is a praise spoken from the perspective of a straight male. Sexuality and sexual prowess are the hallmarks of the Tango. But it has become an art form that now breaks the stereotypes of gender in dance, thanks to an impassioned community that numbers in the millions across the world, and with a sizeable number who are proud members of the LGBT community.

Now, more so than any other time in history, the Tango thrives as the dance of balance between the leader and the follower, between the virile masculine and the graceful feminine. This balance is what first caught me as a young boy, having seen the Tango on a television screen, as those long legs captured an audience.

It is fulfilling that I have now come to understand this expression of movement as a form of storytelling. My favourite tango composer, Astor Piazzolla, was a master of this storytelling form, and his music enthralled a deep love for Tango in me that goes beyond its fleshy delights.

Let’s explore the Argentine Tango, and why the Tango is the ultimate dancing expression of a subtle and knowing but wordless story between the masculine and the feminine.

Continue Reading "On The Argentine Tango"

I love Star Wars and the prequel trilogy because I grew up with them. But I also saw A New Hope well before I saw A Phantom Menace. And it was on that big screen that I first saw Darth Vader.

And so began my haphazard journey through the Star Wars Saga. Because of this, I see both trilogies as one complete story. The prequel trilogy informs us of how it all began before Luke piloted his first X-Wing. Before Yoda showed Luke the power of the Force by raising that same X-Wing out a lake. Before Han Solo and the Millennium Falcon outwitted an Imperial Star Destroyer.

Before the Death Star terrified the Rebellion into near-submission; before a handful of bold and defiant guerrillas, led by a determined and strong woman, delivered its demise at the cost of their own lives.

Before Darth Vader lifted the Emperor and threw him into the abyss.

They tell us of the tragic tale of Anakin Skywalker. And when viewed as one overarching journey for the boy named Ani, the prequels complete the narrative when Luke takes off Vader’s helm to see his father’s kind but tired smile.

Now he is an old and broken man; no longer is he the young and powerful Jedi, or the wrathful Sith he later became.

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Just how could a man with such kind eyes become the monstrous Darth Vader, one who often butchered a room of defenceless rebels without mercy?

From his journey of desperate longing and betrayal to turmoil and redemption, let’s explore one of the great tragic figures of modern storytelling, one responsible for turning George Lucas’s magnum opus into the series that enthralled millions, if not hundreds of millions, of fans around the world for many years.

The Tragic Tale of Darth Vader.

Continue Reading "The tragic tale of Darth Vader, and why THAT Rogue One moment reminds us who he is"