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Classical 101

Finland's Unlikely Love Affair with the Tango

The very mention of tango brings the name Astor Piazzolla mind.  After all, he's the one who took what is arguably Argentina's national dance and moved it from the streets of Buenos Aires into the concert hall.  Tango had become quite popular in Europe in the early 1900s.  It became a huge craze in Paris, followed soon by London, Berlin, and other European capitals.  It soon showed up in Finland.

By the 1950s, tango had become hugely popular all across Finland. Â The Tango Music Advancement Association, established in Finland in early 1984, held the first Tangomarkkinat. Â 18,000 people showed up, with a million-and-a-half more watching on television.

Now, nearly 30 years later, over 100,000 showed up for the 5-day festival.  This is no small thing.  The Finnish are a notoriously private people, not prone to outward signs of affection, much less eye contact. Read Finland's Unlikely Love Affair with the Tango (BBC News)