German Cornejo knows how to play to an audience. Speaking to Sydney Star Observer over email and via a translator, the striking Argentinian dancer was still able to articulate the special appeal the show he stars in, Tango Inferno: The Fire Within, would hold for gay and lesbian audiences.

“Within the company there are men and women for all tastes. The beautiful brunettes, redheads, and blondes will delight the males and lesbians in the audience, while the handsome Latino carved bodies of the male dancers will take the breath away of female and gay audience members,” he said.

“The gay audience will see men who leave them on fire, feeling intense hot moments.”

That’s us sold, then. But beyond the flaming loins, Tango Inferno is an authentic representation of the art of tango, with dancers, singers and a live band all interacting harmoniously on stage. Cornejo said it was important the show was a true reflection of Buenos Aires music and culture.

“The show consists of two very different parts: the first part displays traditional tango, and the second shows tango in a more contemporary, more modern outlook. Both are imprinted by the unmistakable stamp of Buenos Aires. Intimacy is the main focus of the show, whether with one’s self or in the encounter with another, to reach deep into the emotions of the audience.”

There’s even a touch of audience interaction — actually not as gut-churning as it might sound to those who rightly panic at the notion. Before each show, the dancers loosen up the audience by inviting keen members to join them on stage for a warm-up ‘Milonga’, a run-through of an Argentinian dance that actually predates the tango. Cornejo admitted that, once they’d Milonga’ed up, it sometimes proved difficult to wrangle audience members off the stage and begin the show.

“Yes, a little. You can imagine; people feel the contact. Not because this thing called tango is a vertical expression of a horizontal desire, but the show has just begun taking people on an internal trip through the tango,” he said.

“They get to experience it from somewhere else, not just as a spectator. That is what makes Tango Inferno a full experience: the chance to live two realities of the same thing.”

And Germano insists budding dancers should get involved if they’re inspired by what they see on stage.

“Tango is one of the few dances to suit all bodies. The tango dance in its simplest form can be danced by anyone regardless of their physical condition. Besides, the tango has something special which other dances have not provided: the intense contact with your dance partner.”

info: Tango Inferno plays at the State Theatre from August 4-6.

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