Medellin’s Tango Festival kicked off last Wednesday and I headed downtown to Teatro Lido for a free performance by an Argentine group.
Teatro Lido is supported by the government, therefore all the activities and shows are held free of charge, which means a long line forms in advance of the more popular event.
I took my place at the end of that line about an hour before the show was to start. It was already 2 blocks long, but I knew from experience that the theater’s capacity could handle many more people who would arrive later.
It just so happened that I was right behind an American couple and their Colombian friend.
August and his girlfriend were on a long trip in Latin America, having started in Mexico, spent 2 months living in Havana, Cuba, and then 4 months in Medellin. They were heading back to Mexico in a few days.
I took the opportunity to confirm it was incredibly simple for them, as Americans, to visit Cuba.
They just needed to fly in from Mexico, and they were given a 60-day Visa on arrival, which is NOT stamped in their passport. In this way, the Cubans can ensure American tourists don’t risk travel fines when they re-enter the USA.
Yes, I want to visit Cuba in the near future! Especially now that I have a passion for salsa dancing.
The line moved quickly once the theater opened, and we grabbed seats near the rear left of the lower level.
August had invited a poor-looking Colombian man to sit with us as they’d chatted in line too, however I was the one who ended up next to him, inhaling his funky odor for the duration of the show.
At times during the show, he’d sing along with the tango songs, so he clearly knew a thing or two about the music.
I was expecting the show to focus around dancing, but it turned out to be more of a variety show.
There was A LOT of humor, miming, what I believe was an introduction to tango given by a faux professor, some great singing, and of course a couple dancing tango.