The sultry South American tango is winning a big following in South Korea, and Seoul's third festival celebrating the passionate dance drew an international cast of enthusiasts. Dancers from Hong Kong, Australia, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, China, Canada and Argentina got into the swing with scores of Koreans for the Seoul Tango festival from May 5-9.
"I didn't know so many dancers would come from so many places.... it's surprising to see such a huge tango festival here in Korea", said businesswoman Lee Chae -Won, 27, who has just begun learning the dance. But she is already under the sway of the tango and understands the attraction. "I think there's some sort of emotional interaction with the partner, and it soothes my heart when I dance the tango," she said.
"It's the indescribable interaction with the partner," said another local dancer, Ma Sang-Heun, 31, a Seoul elementary school teacher. "It feels as if I am whispering secret words." Tango took off in South Korea only about a decade ago but has grown rapidly in popularity, expanding from Seoul to other cities including Daegu and Busan which have studios dedicated to the dance. - AFP