Melina Sedo said it of tango, but I wonder...
'Only a dance': isn't dance important? At some point in time humans found they could make marks that resembled things they saw around them, and they also found they could communicate with movement, playful movement without the urgency of fleeing rabid wolves, and we've done these things ever since. Birds, bees and some mammals dance to communicate. Dance brings order and regularity and mindfulness into the chaos of movement, and we value it for that.
A good friend I dance with whenever I can works in a bank, of which she says that anyone who works in a bank, herself excepted of course, must be either stupid or crazy. 'I read an article that said there are many psychopaths working in the City: it's true! My office is full of them! I told them all one day, 'You should all learn to dance tango!' and they looked at me as if I was crazy!' I'd guess she's not the only tanguero out there to think their office would be better off if everyone went out to milongas in the evenings. (Not sure the milongas would be better, but give it time.) & that quote from Moliere: 'All the ills of mankind, all the tragic misfortunes that fill the history books, all the political blunders, all the failures of the great leaders have arisen merely from a lack of skill at dancing'. Maybe spoken by a dance teacher and intended as a comic exaggeration, but there's a kind of exasperated truth about it. The world certainly wouldn't be worse if everyone danced more. Chancellor Merkel and President Sarkozi after a day's heated debate on the Euro... Yes! Give it a whirl: why not?
But tango adds the embrace to the great enjoyment of moving to music. People pay to go to hugging workshops because enjoying the touch of other humans makes them feel better. Hugs lower blood pressure and reduce stress, while oxytocin, a hormone that triggers caring and bonding responses in men and women, is released. It's why some think of tango as healing. And of course Ricardo Vidort said that 'Tango is a therapy for the soul', a grand statement, but he'd lived with tango much longer than any of us are likely to.
This apparently chance discovery by the good citizens of Buenos Aires, partly as a result of dance floors that were too small, and driven by an irresistible music, still has plenty in it to make us all feel good and more human. Did their 20-year tango fiesta/party help them? Politically things fell apart badly after 1955, but I think the problem was just that not enough people were dancing.
It's not that dance is unimportant; the problem is that not enough people think that dance is important.