Jennifer Bratt started dancing tango in 2000, in New York City, captivated by the old music, the beautiful movements, the intense connection, and the dimly-lit ambience of the milonga. She soon quit her job and and began making frequent trips to Buenos Aires, to devote herself full-time to her obsession. She began teaching and performing, making tango t-shirts by hand, distributing a free tango ‘zine in NYC, importing tango shoes, and she created the website Close-Embrace.com full of articles, tutorials, and photographs she took of dancers at milongas. She became well known for her technique and embellishment bootcamps, whipping ladies into tango shape all over the country. She believes every step should be beautiful, graceful, and elegant and embellishments should be precise and express a lady’s musicality. Jennifer has partnered with Robin Thomas and Ney Melo, and has lived in New York, Austin, San Francisco (where she owned a tango studio), Miami, and currently New England. She has been invited to teach in Italy, England, Poland, Singapore, Malaysia, Romania, Turkey, Slovenia, Australia, and New Zealand as well as extensively all over North America..
Ney Melo is an internationally renowned Argentine Tango teacher known for his innovative teaching methods and passion for teaching. His tango instruction is sought out by beginning and advanced dancers, as well as other teachers and choreographers from all over the world.
The atmosphere in his classes is relaxed, personable and lively, and he places equal emphasis on the lady’s role as the man’s. Technique and the essence of tango, both fundamental to dancing well, are stressed in whatever step is being shown. Ney is dedicated to inspiring students to dance tango with feeling, musicality, cadencia, and connection – the way it is danced in Buenos Aires.
Ney grew up in New York City and received a scholarship to the prestigious Regis High School in Manhattan. After graduating from Binghamton University with a degree in Accounting, Ney worked for Lehman Brothers but, after Sep 11, he discovered tango and left his career to pursue his dream in Buenos Aires. His story has been featured on Yahoo! News, NY Times (Sep 2011), and many other news publications.
Ney’s tango inspiration and training came from the master couple “Javier Rodriguez y Andrea Missé” and other Argentine masters of the salon style of tango. In 2007, he and his long-time partner Jennifer Bratt established a tango school in the Nob Hill section of San Franciso which reintroduced the traditional salon style to the young generation of West Coast tango dancers. In 2011, they moved back to New York City in order to be closer to their families.
After Jennifer took a break from teaching and performing tango in 2011, Ney went on to partner with Maestras Cecilia Gonzalez and Virginia Pandolfi on teaching tours to Iceland, Australia, Germany, and Italy.
In addition to his busy travel schedule, Ney can be found teaching Argentine tango at his school “Brooklyn Tango” in New York City.
Website for Maleva Shoes, Jennifer’s own line.