Mercury is an ancient symbol of connection. The mythological figure is commonly portrayed with wings on his feet, ferrying mortals to the underworld and facilitating trade between communities. We find this resonates with our experience of tango—in its embrace, where two partners connect to become one, and in its communities, where dancers and visitors meet across boundaries of identity, class, and generation.
Tango Mercurio, a 501(c)(3) arts-education organization, works to facilitate these connections, presenting the creative tango tradition as a way for individuals to find balance in their lives and discover the unique contributions they have to make in the world.
We teach classes in Argentine Tango, from complete beginner to teacher-in-training. We host social events, called milongas, where social dancers at all levels are treated to high-quality music and a welcoming atmosphere. We present live music for dancing and cultural education, with an all-volunteer 20-piece orchestra. And we connect the tango community to the broader community in the Washington, DC, area, bringing dance, music, and culture to the young, the elderly, and the public at large.
Mission & Goals
Tango Mercurio is an arts education organization presenting Argentine Tango as an agent of community development. Because tango is a community-based art form with a global following, it embraces dancers, musicians, and the public at large across boundaries of identity, class, and generation. Our mission is to promote cultural understanding and social cohesion through Argentine Tango by providing ongoing public opportunities for dance, music, learning, and community engagement.
Education - Our adult tango curriculum is taught by a team of experienced instructors. Designed to produce versatile social dancers, the program is influenced by an appreciation of natural body alignment and movement as well as a commitment to the personal aesthetic created by each unique tango partnership. Special workshops and guest artist residencies enrich our process of learning and dancing tango.
Music - Mercurio supports an all-volunteer orchestra, the Tango Mercurio Community Orchestra, to nurture the revitalization of live music for dancing. The CTO plays regularly at local tango events and features several guest artists visiting DC each year.
Outreach - With the intention of connecting generations, we have developed outreach programs to make tango instruction and performance accessible to underserved youth and elders in our community. In addition, our instructors and orchestra give public tango performances throughout the year in support of a variety of community festivals and cultural events.
Resource Center - We maintain a collection of free online articles and educational materials to enhance the study and appreciation of tango nationwide.
Photo credit: Mariano Otero and Alejandra Heredia by Pavel Metelitsyn