I always think there's a difference between teachers of dance, and teachers of steps. There seems to be a good number of the latter, and they tend to encourage students to be 'step collectors', '...the kind of tango dancer no one wants to meet...' as Oscar Casas remarked witheringly.
Teachers of dance teach steps too, but they also teach you to dance, a much more complex and complete teaching.
Andreas talks more than most teachers, but it was all to the point, and interesting, and he was listened to attentively. He started by talking about good posture, the vertebra between the shoulder blades pushed forwards, the chin pulled a bit back, so the chest leads. Then walking with good posture to the music, on the beat. Then walking in single and double time. It had never occurred to me that double time can be led through the shoulders: for want of a better idea I'd always pushed ahead and just hoped my partner would step back fast enough. Then the close embrace, walking in close embrace, and finally walking in the embrace in single and double time. All well-explained, reasonable, practical.
Talk of the social dynamics of male and female in tango. We were recommended to try to use the cabaceo, since that removes from the woman the need to refuse a dance to a man hovering in front of her.
It was a good evening. The class was well-attended, particularly for a warm Friday evening in mid-August, and there was a good crowd right until the end of the milonga too. Very impressively, Andreas was there throughout, dancing with anyone who was interested. I've never seen a teacher do that before. If they don't already know, it gave a fair number of partners a taste of how good close-hold salon tango can be, I'm told. It was the first of two lessons, but I hope he will be back in the autumn, as he lives and teaches in Totnes now. He learned from the late Gavito on his visits to Switzerland. He said that technically Gavito wasn't a good teacher [ed. I've misrepresented his remark: please see the Comments for a clarification by Andreas], but he was an inspiring one, he changed peoples' dancing lives.
Carablanca feels good these days. Even around the edges it's beginning to look a bit like a Buenos Aires milonga, plates of hot empanadas going around, (vege and non-vege) and wine at a reasonable price. A place where you can go and relax for an evening, have a bite to eat, meet friends, chat and dance.