Home Page

Traditional Milongas in the Midwest

In the milongas of Buenos Aires, DJs play only classic tango music from the late 1920s to late 1950s (the Golden Age) for dancing tango. This music is played in tandas (sets) of 3 or 4 tangos or milongas or valses, with each tanda separated by a cortina of non-tango music. Most milongas in Buenos Aires also have tandas of non-tango music, typically tropical Latin (cumbia, salsa), swing (jazz & rock 'n roll), and folk (chacarera, paso doble, etc.). This is the tradition in the city in which tango was born. Outside Argentina it is common for DJs at milongas to break from tango tradition and add other types of music intended to elicit the steps used in dancing tango, e.g., modern interpretations of classic tangos, 'neotango' (electronic music with a dance club beat that adds a bandoneon), and non-tango music (such as rock, Latin, and New Age music). These events that break from tango tradition are sometimes, but not always called 'alternative milongas'.

Many experienced tango dancers prefer to dance tango to the best music suited for this purpose, the classic tango music from the Golden Age, the same as is played in the milongas of Buenos Aires. Because advertising of milongas is not always accurate (events where non-traditional music are played for dancing tango are not always listed as 'alternative milongas'), we have provided a guide for finding traditional milongas in the Midwest. Listed below are milongas where classic tango is played exclusively for dancing tango, where the program is organized into tandas with cortinas. If sets of Latin and swing music are also played, this is indicated, and a milonga is considered 'traditional' here as long as not more than one set of this type is played per hour.

State
City
Milonga / Location Dates / Times / Admission
DJ
Other Tandas
IA
Iowa City
Milonga en el Centro
(a) Iowa City Senior Center
28 S Linn Street
(b) Wesley Center
120 N Dubuque
Iowa City IA


(a) 2nd Saturday of the month

(b) 3rd Satuday of the month
7:30 - 11 PM
Admission: $5

Greg Kovaciny
e-mail
Web
No
IL
Chicago
Los Besos Milonguita
4011 North Ravenswood
Studio 102
Chicago IL 60613
1st, 2nd Saturdays
10 PM - 3 AM
Admission: $15
Ellen Mashkovich
e-mail
Web
Latin, Swing
(Upon request)
IL
Chicago
Milonga Negra
Efes Cafe
2833 N Broadway
Chicago IL
Every Tuesday
9 PM - 12 AM
Admission: $10
Ray Barbosa
e-mail
1 Tanda of
Latin or
Swing

IL
Urbana
Milonga del Corazon
Phillips Recreation Center
505 W Stoughton
Urbana IL 61801
Saturdays (approx. 15x/yr)
9:30 PM - 12:30 AM+
Admission: $7
See website for schedule.
Ron Weigel
e-mail
Web
Latin, Swing
(Special
occasions only)
IN
Bloomington
3404 Brookstone Ct.
Bloomington, IN 47401
Saturdays (approx. monthly)
8:30 PM - 12 AM
Admission: Free
See website for schedule.
Paul & Magdalena Mullek
e-mail
Web
No
IN
Indianapolis

Riolo Dance
502 N. Capitol
Indianapolis IN

Saturdays (approx. monthly)
8:30 PM - 12 AM
Admission: $10 ($5 students)
See website for schedule.
David Crosley
e-mail
Web
No
MI
Ann Arbor Milonga Picante
University of Michigan Union
Ann Arbor MI
Saturdays (approx. 2x/month)
9 PM - 1 AM
Admission: (not listed)
See website for schedule
Various
e-mail
Web
No
MN
Minneapolis
Milonga Flor de Luna
Four Seasons Dance
1637 Hennapin Ave
Minneapolis MN
Monthly
Friday before 2nd Saturday
9:30 PM - 1 AM
Admission: $8 ($4 students)
Christopher Everett
e-mail
No
MN
St Paul

Black Dog Milonga
Black Dog Coffee & Wine Bar
308 Prince Street
St Paul MN 55102

Monthly - 3rd Saturday
8 PM - 12 AM
Admission: $6
Lois Donnay
e-mail
Web
Swing
OH
Cleveland
Alegria
8778 Gatewood Drive
North Ridgeville OH 44039
Saturdays (approx. monthly)
9 PM - 1 AM
Admission: $5
See website for schedule.

Tim Pogros
e-mail
Web
No

If you know of additional milongas in the Midwest that follow the Buenos Aires tradition of playing exclusively classic tango music for dancing tango, please contact the Webmaster. If some of the information in the table above is no longer accurate, please also contact us so we may update this web page.