Open-air tango demonstrations figured heavily in the planning of Argentine Week in Philadelphia, a cultural celebration organized by the Embassy of Argentina, but the weather has not cooperated. Tango demonstrations scheduled for Monday and Tuesday were cancelled, but on Thursday about a dozen devotees of the Argentine style gathered in Love Park to show off their skills.
The sky-blue flag of Argentina whipped around in the chilly wind as the dancers arrived in overcoats and gloves, but the jackets came off as the dancers warmed up. They were brought together by Meredith Klein, director of the Philadelphia Argentine Tango School.
Among the spectators was First Secretary Francisco Lopez Achaval of the cultural section of the Argentine embassy. Argentina has a strong business relationship with Philadelphia, he said. The goal of Argentine Week was to bring a cultural dimension to that relationship.
Achaval declined to join the open demonstration, explaining that he was out of practice, but he watched with approval.
“These are all local residents,” said Achaval, gesturing toward the dancers on the stage at Love Park. “There is a place for tango, there is a place for Argentine culture.”