Capturing Dance on Screen: The Fan Carpet’s Tremayne Miller spoke to Our Last Tango Writer and Director German Kral
Written and directed by German Kral (The Last Applause, Música Cubana), OUR LAST TANGO tells the life and love story of Argentina’s most celebrated Tango dancers Maria Nieves Rego and Juan Carlos Copes. They met as teenagers and danced together for nearly fifty years, becoming international stars and making the Argentine Tango famous around the world before a painful separation tore them apart. In German Kral´s documentary the virtuosos reunite to open up about their journey, recreating incredible Tango-choreographies with the help of a group of young dancers from Buenos Aires including acclaimed dancer Pablo Verón (The Tango Lesson).
As a practising dancer of theatrical and contemporary jazz, the film Our Last Tango, directed by German Kral aroused emotions inside of me that I struggle to describe. Its execution was done in such a way, so that every shot held a meaning and beauty.
And Maria Nieves was shown to be quite the inspirational character!
Now read the interview held between myself and German Kral, who himself was born in Beunos Aires, Argentina, where Tango was born. Kral, both director and writer is known for Our Last Tango but also Musica Cubana (2004) and Images of the Absence (1999).
The Fan Carpet’s Tremayne Miller had the opportunity to talk to Writer and Director German Kral for the release of Our Last Tango...
In the director's statement I was provided with, you mention your first meeting with Maria Nieves, did this occur by pure chance or were you expecting to come across her?
I definitely wanted to meet her, as I knew María Nieves and Juan Carlos Copes as the greatest Tango couple of all time. I made an appointment through a dancer I knew with her. So, when I met her, it was not by chance but I never imagined that María would be such a great character!
Why was making a film about Tango so important to you?
I never intended to make a film “about Tango”. The first idea was to make a film about old milongueros (Tango dancers) from Buenos Aires. But when I came across the story of María Nieves and Juan Carlos Copes, I knew that I had to throw away the original idea and that the film should tell María’s and Juan’s story. The film was never “about Tango” but about their story.
What challenges did you face?
The whole process of making the film, from the first written sentence to the first private screening of the finished film, took four years and was extremely difficult. I feel that every step was an incredible challenge. Starting with finding the right protagonists, followed by raising the money, and putting together the production and last, but not least, to have María and Juan together on a stage again…But along the way, the Filmmaking Gods started to help us. I’m very grateful to them!
OUR LAST TANGO IS OUT NOW