For many, tango is synonymous with Argentina.
Seeing a tango show in Buenos Aires is one of those obligatory tourist activities visitors feel compelled to do, just like seeing a Broadway production while visiting New York City.
While most of these glamorous shows have little to do with ‘real’ social tango as it’s danced in a milonga, the production levels are high and the shows are a fun night out to enjoy Argentina’s most famous cultural export.
Many of the professional performers are local legends and have participated in the Buenos Aires Tango Festival and World Cup.
Mora Godoy, choreographer of the Tango Porteña show listed below, famously danced with former U.S. President Obama when he visited Buenos Aires in 2016.
Almost all of the shows include an Andean folkloric segment in addition to tango, so the shows encompass a wider overview of traditional music and dance in Argentina.
Below is a curated list of Buenos Aires’ tango shows. There are a variety of shows on offer, from smaller, intimate theater-like shows to large, splashy productions with dozens of singers, musicians and dancers.
This list covers most of the shows, since there is no accounting for taste — only a few that have gained a reputation for providing a poor value have been intentionally left off.
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Buenos Aires Tango Shows
Rojo Tango Show
The Rojo Tango show takes place at the cabaret of the luxury Faena Hotel in Buenos Aires’ modern Puerto Madero neighborhood . Rojo Tango is the highest-end tango show available and features spectacular costumes and dancing.
This dinner show, set in a sultry 1920s-style cabaret, is also celebrated for its high quality three-course meal that includes champagne and wine.
Tango Piazzolla Show
Located in the beautiful Galeria Güemes, the fully restored the Astor Piazzollo complex has a Moulin Rouge vibe in an authentic theater setting. The show features the six piece orchestra of Carlos Buono and Juan Pugliano; singers, Ricardo Marin and Marisol Martinez, and six couples that are among some of Buenos Aires most renowned tangueros (tango dancers), including a couple that won at the 2015 Tango World Cup.
The balcony seats are special for a party of five or six, but there’s not a bad seat in the house. This historic venue is fully accessible for wheelchair users and offers vegetarian and gluten-free options for dinner.
* The VIP option of Piazzolla, which includes front area seating and higher quality wine, isn’t available to book online, get in touch with us below to book the premium dinner tango show.
Café de Los Angelitos Tango Show
The historic Café de los Angelitos is a popular Buenos Aires attraction for both locals and visitors. In the evening, the café hosts one of the city’s most popular and gimmick-free tango shows.
The dramatic show has an authentic ‘Golden era of tango’ feel and features a talented quintet, 14 well-choreographed dancers and two singers.
Señor Tango Show
Señor a Tango is a stylized Las Vegas-type show that continues to ride on its reputation as one of the city’s grandest tango productions. It is popular with locals, in part because it is one of the lowest-priced tango shows in the city. Due to the impassioned Spanish-only speaking parts, this production gets mixed reviews from foreigners who don’t understand Spanish.
The show is a mix of dancing, song and orchestral numbers, some veering very far from tango. Expect elaborate costumes, pyrotechnics, the appearance of live horses on stage and a spirited rendition of “Don’t Cry for me Argentina” for the finale.
Tango Porteño Show
Steps from the Obelisk, Tango Porteño highlights the ‘Golden Decade’ of Argentine tango, after World War II, when tango rose from the underground and became accepted by the general public.
Taking place in the theater Metro, this Broadway-style spectacle takes visitors back through a tango journey featuring the music of Canaro, Piazzolla, De Caro, Gobbi, D’Agostino and many others including Troilo and Pugliese. Dinner is a three-course meal with several optional entreés, paired with Argentine wines.
Madero Tango Show
One of Buenos Aires’ largest and glitzy tango productions, Madero Tango in the Puerto Madero neighborhood takes visitors through a tango journey, starting with its humble origins in the 19th century, through its popularity among the middle class, up to modern-day tango spin-offs including tango-jazz fusion and ‘tangotronica’ paired with aerial dance.
The show is directed by Gustavo Zajac, known for his work on Broadway, including Victor Victoria, Tangorama and Nine. This show features some of Argentina’s most well-known dancers, Laura Fidalgo and Hugo Paty. This glamour-filled extravaganza is for those looking for an energetic Broadway-style tango production. The dinner service staff is professional and attentive as well. This show is popular on Christmas and New Year’s Eve, as visitors are able to join the party and view fireworks in the neighborhood after the show.
La Ventana Show
Set in an elegantly refurbished tenement building of San Telmo, La Ventana is one of the more intimate tango shows. The show includes music by the celebrated Juan D´Arienzo orchestra, two tango singers, eight evocative tango dancers and great costumes. The performance touches on other cultural highlights with an Andean folk music segment, folkloric ballet, an adept gaucho showing off cowboy skills and a patriotic, if predictable, ‘Don’t Cry for me Argentina’ climax.
Querandi Tango Show
Set in a historic 1867 hall a few steps from City Hall in Monserrat, this is one of the more intimate, low-key tango shows, known for its tight quartet on accordion, piano, violin and stand-up bass.
Joining them are two pairs of well-seasoned crooners and four sexily dressed couples dancing tango, following a plot line that focuses on the tango of the late 19th century until 1925. The accompanying dinner service here has a reputation of being one of the better ones among the tango shows.
Tango Esquina Carlos Gardel Show
In the Abasto neighborhood of the late tango great Carlos Gardel, this sensual tango show runs through the history of tango decade by decade with lots of fancy footwork.
Tango Esquina Carlos Gardel features a total of 25 performers on stage including a typical tango sextet led by Erica di Salvo, along with twelve dancers and two singers.
El Viejo Almacén Tango Show
El Viejo Almacén is one of the smaller tango venues, located in a 200-year-old building in a traditional 3-story ‘tango temple’ in the San Telmo neighborhood.
This show is a good one for those looking for something more authentic and less Las Vegas.
The show includes a very professional sextet, precise dancing by four couples on a small stage, four singers and, as with several other shows, an interlude by an Andean folk group.
The dining area is separate from the actual tango venue. While the dinner here gets mixed reviews, travelers who stick to the Argentine specialty of steak usually leave happy.
Aljibe Tanguería Tango Show
The Aljibe Tango Dinner Show is a newer show that is popular with families, as it has an earlier start and end time than other tango shows in Buenos Aires.
This intimate show, set in a restored historic building in Monserrat, features professional dancers and musicians, and an excellent bandoneón player. This show highlights Argentina’s widely under-appreciated folkloric music and dance tradition, in addition to tango.
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Tango Classes, Milonga Tours & Activities in Buenos Aires
Those looking to dip their toes in the tango waters can visit one of Buenos Aires’ many milongas (such as La Viruta, La Catedral or La Milonga del Indio in San Telmo‘s Plaza Dorrego) take a tango class, and learn about the tango ‘codes’ of the local dance halls accompanied by local experts.
Buenos Aires: Tango Lesson & Milonga Tour
A milonga tour with an expert guide that starts with a professional class and visit to a San Telmo milonga (tango dance hall) at a traditional tango La Confitería Ideal. The tour than heads to the World Tango Museum on Avenida de Mayo and is followed by a final stop at Café Tortoni, Buenos Aires oldest cafe.
Buenos Aires VIP Tango Experience
A five-and-half hour tour led by professional tango dancers and teachers. This tour starts with a private class, followed by snacks and a discussion of the social ‘codes’ of the milonga.
Guests then head to a professional tango dinner show where they have preferential seating. Tour includes snacks, dinner and pickup and drop-off.
Buenos Aires Tango Night Tour
A perfect tango excursion for a couple, this tango tour allows visitors to blend in to the milonga scene as if they were locals.
The tour includes pickup and transport to an authentic milonga in San Telmo, and a group class followed by the chance to hit the dance floor with locals while a live tango orchestra plays. An expert guide explains the ‘codes’ of how to ask or accept a dance and informs visitors about the current trends in Buenos Aires’ tango scene. This four-hour tour starts at 8:30 p.m. and includes transportation. Minimum two people.
Tango in Buenos Aires: Four-hour Milonga Outing
Head to a Buenos Aires milonga (tango venue) with a professional, bilingual tango dancer. Get an inside view into the Tango subculture, learn about the unspoken rules of conduct, the music, dance and history. Depending on customer preference, the tour will take you to a traditional or gay milonga. This tour includes pickup and is for a minimum of two people.
⇒ Book the Tango Night in Buenos Aires Tour
Three-hour Tango, Tango, Tango tour
A comprehensive tour covering many of Buenos Aires’ well-known tango hot spots. This tour starts at the Obelisco, then goes by one of the city’s oldest milongas.
After some dancing, the tour continues along the famous Avenida de Mayo, by the National Academy of Tango (home of the World Tango Museum). The tour then heads to the ‘Temple of Tango’ in San Telmo, and the Viejo Almancen (show listed above) tango house. The tour ends in Plaza Dorrego where visitors can grab a drink and watch some tango.
Private One-Hour Tango Class in Palermo
Those staying in Palermo who really want to jump into the tango scene might want to try a one-hour private class with experienced professional dancers.
The class covers all the fundamentals of tango from the embrace, the walk, figure eight, and ‘codigos‘ with a professional pair of tango dancers, including — if you’re lucky — one of the winners of the yearly World Tango Championship in Buenos Aires.
The classes are modified depending on the participants’ level of experience and are available from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. near Plaza Serrano in Palermo.
Half-Day Authentic Tango Experience
Take a lesson to get a handle on the tango basics and learn what you practice on the dance floor with local milongueros in the bona fide tango neighborhood of San Telmo.
Throughout the evening you’ll be in the company of an expert guide familiar with the local scene and able to explain the ‘codigos‘ (codes) of the dance floor. This tour is available in English or Spanish. Transportation and one non-alcoholic drink is included.
Book a Tango Show or Activity
To inquire more about the tango shows and milonga tours, as well as other events, please get in touch via the contact form below.
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