In a company, everyone had to have a distinctive characteristic and I was a dancer, so I was useful in the halls. I did a number, and all the women wanted to dance the boogie-woogie with me, rock & roll, the Charleston and bebop. My function was to make friends with the women, to break the ice. But people in the local company got mad, there was a strike and a counterstrike, and we ended up at the police station charged with brawling.
In the great hall of the subway station , which until a few decades ago housed furniture stores, now stretches a vacant corridor traversed by the constant coming and going of travelers.
Its ample dimensions were designed to cope with the flow of people in what was then one of the busiest hubs in the city, and in anticipation of the interchange with Line 4, which was never realized.
On Saturday afternoons, this space is transformed and becomes a veritable dance hall.
While in the Milan of the 1950’s young people like Primo Moroni moved to the rhythm of the boogie-woogie and rock'n'roll, kids nowadays are dancing to Latin American music, rap and pop.
Groups of young people of Filipino origin practice couples dancing to prepare for the prom, the dance at the end of the school year, especially popular in the United States.
Others breakdance, often without stereos or speakers, just using ear-buds.
Many young people from South America dedicate themselves to contemporary reworkings of traditional dances.
Most Peruvian and Bolivian groups dance caporales, a dance born in Bolivia and widespread throughout most of South America.
It is a modern adaptation of a folk dance inspired by Latin America’s colonial past, danced in flashy costumes and heavy boots fitted with bells to a rhythm marked by whistles.
Some groups of South American dancers are organized into cultural associations, and put together various initiatives and public events. Fundraisers include celebrations and polladas, self-financing endeavors that are simultaneously occasions for bringing the Latino community together.
Along with the strong sense of community is the desire to become known in the city. Participation in events and parades means achieving visibility, dancing out in the open.