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About our Instructors

Ney Melo and Jennifer Bratt

Ney Melo and Jennifer Bratt dance an elegant style of social tango which is rooted in the traditions of the neighborhood of Villa Urquiza in Buenos Aires. Their dance is defined by a smooth and graceful walk, a powerful sense of musicality, subtle steps entwined with intricate embellishments, and an intimate embrace. Their passion and respect for tango, its culture, and its music is clearly evidenced in their emotional dancing, as well as in their teaching.

Jennifer Bratt is regarded by many as the best female tango dancer in the US. Her sharp embellishments and articulate feet are often compared to those of the renowned Geraldine Rojas. Ney Melo is known for his innovative teaching methods and passion for teaching. His stage performances include New York City's Town Hall Theatre, and in Montreal alongside the "Color Tango" Orchestra from Buenos Aires.

Ney and Jennifer are highly sought-after teachers. Together, they have taught and performed in over 30 cities and 12 countries. They also organize 2 annual tours to Buenos Aires for dancers (where they live for 4 months of the year).

Websites: Ney Melo and Jennifer Bratt.

Nick Jones & Tara Fortier

Innovators with a beautiful style and clear conceptual perspective on the dance, Nick and Tara have taught an extended dance vocabulary at festivals across America and in Buenos Aires. Their style blends nuevo tango concepts and close embrace subtlety with influences drawn from Pulpo Esbrez & Luiza Paes, Chicho Frumboli, and Julio & Corina Balmaceda. Focussed on technique based in natural body movement, Nick and Tara emphasize pedagogy as an important part of their profession.

Website: Nick and Tara

Damian Lobato and Jennifer Olson

Damian started dancing in 1991 with renowned milonguero masters, including "El Pibe Palermo," (the former partner of Carmencita Calderon). After 8 years of dancing this style, he started training with Gustavo Naveira and Mariano "Chicho" Frumboli, and began teaching tango in different cities around Argentina until 2002. Since 2002, he has taken part in Tango Discovery in Argentina, invited by Mauricio Castro and in 2003, 2004, and 2005 he was invited to tour Central America and Europe. Together with Dutch and French dancers he took part in "Tangokobinat," a tango show presented in Germany in February 2005. In 2006, he assisted Fabian Salas in CITA, the annual tango convention in Buenos Aires. Since May 2006, he has been teaching extensively in Europe in such places as London, England; Rotterdam, Holland; Pisa, Italy; and Barcelona, Spain.

Damian's dance is characterized by a masterful combination of nuevo tango elements with traditional tango aesthetics. Seamless transitions between the various elements and a keen sense of musicality are emphasized in his dance and are applied in his teaching, training, and dancing.

Jennifer Olson started her tango career in Portland (OR), tango has now taken Jennifer all over the world: to Europe (where she has taught in England), to Argentina and Uruguay (where she has been invited to perform at several milongas), and throughout the United States and Canada (where she has taught and performed extensively).

Arguably without a home, Jennifer continues to travel (and live out of her suitcase) year-round. She has taught at festivals and given workshops around the world including Montevideo, Uruguay; London, England; Toronto, Canada; Montreal, Canada; Portland, OR; Seattle, WA; Denver, CO; New York, NY; Washington D.C.; Atlanta, GA; Boston, MA; Princeton, NJ (at Princeton University); New Haven, CT (at Yale University); and St. Louis, MO.Jennifer has taught with known tango masters Alex Krebs and Robin Thomas. Currently, she partners with Damian Lobato of Buenos Aires. She most recently has been seen tearing up the floors of Buenos Aires (where she has lived for four months).

Jennifer's dance is characterized by her desire to strive for versatility. Since tango is a social dance, she believes it is integral to master not only close and open embrace, but also everything in-between. Furthermore, after having a connected and comfortable embrace, nothing is more important to Jennifer than the music. This is transmitted in her teaching, as she approaches every class with a strong command over the music.

As a DJ, Jennifer strives for versatility as well. She does not have ONE format she uses for DJing, but adapts according to the group that is in the room. Jennifer has extensive experience DJing not only traditional milongas around the world, but also alternative milongas.

Website: Damian and Jennifer and Jennifer