Body Language: The Art of Tango at Bodegas CARO
Join us for an in-depth conversation with artists and choreographers Marta Morel and Gonzalo Cano, our inimitable Tango duo.
At our Bodegas CARO estate in Mendoza, we host regular ‘Tango y Vino’ evenings, celebrating Argentina’s most famous form of dance, alongside a wine tasting in our “nave de turismo”. At Bodegas CARO, we believe in the art of blending – and culture is no exception. Our delight in good wine pairs perfectly with our profound enjoyment of the arts, and in particular the expressive, embodied artform that is Tango.
We first encountered Marta and Gonzalo dancing in the Harvest Festival 5 years ago – it was such a vivid experience that we had to invite them to perform at Bodegas CARO. This exquisite pairing now joins us once a month at the Estate for evenings of entertainment that seduce all the senses. We sat down with them both, to discuss the art of Tango, Argentinian culture, wine, storytelling and, inevitably, the language of the human body.
First and foremost – how would you describe the Tango in your own words, to someone who has never seen it?
Marta: Tango is known as ‘the art of walking’. It’s a pure bodily and energetic expression, because you have to connect fully with another person, to understand one another without speaking. It’s a heritage artform – unique in its style, its form, its closeness, its energy. And it’s also a kind of improvisation… something that happens between two people. Even if they’re strangers, speak different languages, they can dance together. There’s a body language.
Gonzalo: Absolutely. Tango is a passionate dance. It moves energy, stirs emotion, and is one of the finest non-acrobatic dances – one that can be improvised anywhere in the world, with anyone. Through feeling alone, it allows you to delve into many bodily expressions and sensations that, in my opinion, no other dance style can provide.
What drew you to dance, and to Tango in particular?
Marta: Well, in my case, I’ve been dancing since I was three years old; I went through various styles – classical, Spanish salsa, folk, and Tango. The last one… I always loved it, and always knew I had to learn, because it’s completely different from the others.
Gonzalo: Dance has been a constant presence in my life. My father was part of a municipal ensemble, and we absorbed so much of that culture as children, it shaped us. I gradually ventured into the world of dance – Tango, in particular, caught my attention. At first, its similarity to folk dances like the chamamé intrigued me. Later, I found myself captivated by the ways in which it’s like nothing else at all – its elegance, refinement, gait, and the reverence it commands. That’s what drew me in. Watching others dance became an obsession… great Tango performers were my role models, and I wanted to emulate their artistry.
Tell us about the first time you came to the Bodegas CARO estate – what drew you?
Marta: The first time I performed at Bodegas CARO was about five years ago. I was fascinated – I found it to be a very intimate winery, with a lovely and helpful team, a place that feels like home both for the performer and the audience. And there’s a special affection for this place that’s just grown, day by day, year by year… I now consider it my home away from home.
Gonzalo: For a while, we were part of an interesting winery circuit, and we met a lot of people within the Tango community. When they put us with Bodegas CARO, this new winery family treated us with such kindness, supported our endeavors, and really believed in our artistic output. It’s sensational, to be in a place that treats you 100% as an artist, with the authority to adapt the performance and narrative as you wish. That’s something truly beautiful, and very special – when a company contributes to culture and transforms their space into a hub for the entire community. Not just for Tango, but painting, art, music, and other genres – they’re all flourishing. I consider it immensely enriching for Mendoza’s culture as a whole.
What is special about the Tango at Bodegas CARO events, which might be unusual in the performance world?
Marta: The most distinctive aspect of the Bodegas CARO Winery show lies in the exceptionally tight bond formed with the audience. They’re so close; with no stage, and not much distance between us, it’s so intimate. That kind of connection allows for direct eye contact, a kind of conversation takes place between us – there’s humor, an understanding. All these elements combine to dissolve the wall separating the audience from the artist. It’s so enjoyable – and it’s really uncommon.
In a short show, we take a journey through the history of Tango, showcasing moments ranging from the 19th century to the present day. It’s rare to have that opportunity – more focused on the dance aspect, telling a story through each dance.
What’s your favorite Bodegas CARO bottle to open after (or before!) a show?
Marta: Aruma, of course!
Gonzalo: The one I like the most is Aruma. It’s exquisite. And we’ve learned several things about wine at Bodegas CARO – from tasting, to the aging process. I remember when we’d open a bottle, Eugenia (Finance and Accounting Manager at Bodegas CARO) would tell me to let the wine breathe… because of course, we would uncork it and immediately start pouring!
I also snuck along for a couple of guided tours – as a guest, you feel a part of the entire process. And with that knowledge, you approach it differently. It’s not just a glass of wine, but a blend of sensations, an understanding of how the wine made its journey from the vine to the table, how it transformed and how it was crafted.
When you are choreographing a new dance, what inspires you? Are you led more by intuition or observation?
Marta: It’s about capturing the feeling evoked by the music – melodies that kindle passion, rhythms that summon drama, elation, power, and sorrow. It all depends on how the music sparks emotion within me. That’s what I try to express through my dance – not just an alignment with the music, but the two coalescing in harmony. When I choreograph a piece, it all hinges on the context in which it will be performed – I’m always adapting my interpretation, as I shape each new composition.
Gonzalo: Inspiration often comes from everyday things: a book you’ve read, something you’ve seen in the world and thought maybe you could convey through dance. It’s that feeling of needing to convey. A choreographer isn’t working with the intention of pleasing anyone else – it’s about pleasing oneself, with what’s being created. As time goes on, methods change, new techniques replace old ones. What once would have been done with a leap or an acrobatic jump might now be adapted into a more fluid, narrative moment.
Where is your favorite spot on the Bodegas CARO Estate and why?
Marta: My favorite place, of course, is where the show takes place… and there’s also a unique magic in the cellar, it has incredible acoustics.
Gonzalo: I agree – where we perform, right there by that lovely bar. That, to me, is a beautiful place because of everything that unfolds there. It really does hold a special kind of magic. But there are a few other places that are just as enchanting: the Art Hall, the Cellar… they give you a tingling sensation. Is that enchantment? Maybe that’s the wine [laughs].