Tango Therapist's Bio

In case you are wondering who the Tango Therapist is . . . 

Tango has brought together all the passions I have had through my life into one marvelous thing as a dancer.  Maybe this is what you too have experienced?

Being a musician:
I once had a huge revelation about dance and music.  Being a musician was my greatest joy in life. I was eleven years old when music became my first big passion. By the time I was thirteen, I was playing professionally as a percussionist and drummer. Although I left the music industry to do other things, I was always playing and finding great joy as a musician.  Then one night while living in Germany, I had teamed up with a salsa DJ (before tango) and I was playing Latin percussion with the DJ for the dancers.  I was in heaven, playing congas or timbales to the music.  But then a favorite song came on, and I put down my timbale sticks and danced with a favorite partner. The realization that dance was more enjoyable than being a musician overcame me. I was really in shock that I had not realized this earlier.  Now I see my years of being a musician as the most wonderful preparation to be a dancer.  Anyway, I was always "dancing" behind my instrument, my fellow musicians told me. 

Being a writer for tango's Four M's (Music, Movement, eMbrace & Mindfulness):
On a music scholarship at the university, I discovered my passion to be a writer in some English classes I was forced to take.  I eventually changed majors to English. I also was forced to take a foreign language at the university, and that too became a passion of mine--Spanish first and other languages followed. Thinking as a musician at heart, I started "Tango Therapist" as "Tango Beat."  I wanted to write about how the music's African rhythm inspired me in tango.  But from in spite of my intentions, I started writing about psychological issues, such as dealing with rejection.  I eventually wrote about music and musicality, but mostly the themes have been about the human spirit and how music and dance get us to be in our bodies and to be mindful, connected and graceful. 

Being a practitioner of mindfulness:
After I graduated with an English degree, I quit my job as a percussionist with the MGM Orchestra in Reno, Nevada. I went off to Mexico to be a teacher and then returned from three years later with the best preparation I can think of for my next educational endeavor. I soon completed a Master of Divinity at Boston University. This training helps me interpret the experience of tango nirvana as "mindfulness" and how it supersedes religious prescriptions for heaven on earth. This education helps me understand and write about the human spirit and how it longs to dance, to dream, to find shelter, to find a connection.

Being a therapist:
Yet more graduate education nurtured a passion for helping victims of psychological trauma as a licensed therapist, a clinical social worker. Tango has given me new insights into the therapeutic process of bilateral stimulation to the brain (through movement) for trauma victims.  Many of my insights into the resiliency of the human spirit come from working with combat veterans since 1990.

The Concourse of Passions: Tango
I discovered tango while deployed as a medical service officer to El Paso, Texas in 2006. Tango has united all my passions, and for that reason, it has been very intensely pleasing for me. I have never experienced the absolute joy and depth of any one thing so much as with tango. I feel more like a musician than ever through dance. I experience and see tango's therapeutic effects on a community of dancers, and then I write about the psychological/spiritual challenges it gives us. Preparing blog posts for over ten years has been a kind of doctoral project for me--certainly a continual life-long learning project.

Tango isn't a dance for me, it is the focus of all my previous passions into one thing--the concourse of passions--Argentine tango.

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