Tango Notes: Baldosa Box

The Baldosa Box, or simply Baldosa, is a 6-step box figure that is very common in the milonga style and is often taught as an introductory tango figure. It is similar to the Basic Eight without the Cross. The Spanish term "baldosa" means "floor tile", presumably because the rectangular nature of this figure resembles the shape of a floor tile.

Milonga, Tango, and and Vals. The Baldosa is an essential element of the milonga style of dancing and has many variations. In the milonga one steps either on every beat or step double-time. It is also used in tango and vals, altho not as frequently. In tango style one might make pauses or extend a step (especially a side step) over more than one beat.

Videos - Baldosa Box - Introductory

Baldosa Box 2:51
By Christy Coté and George García. This discusses the leader's steps, especially noting step 3 outside, as in the Basic Eight, but then step 4 back in front of the follower. The weight change at the end of step 6 is indicated with a slight lift and shift onto the other foot.
Tango Lesson Baldosa 0:34
By Tony Dainotti. This short video shows the baldosa in tango style with a slow close. Although the www.rayolatino.it site is no longer useful, Sabine has uploaded some of their short instructional (mostly intermediate) videos to YouTube.
Baldosa 0:11
This has those crazy foot position diagrams, which for this simple step actually are readable. The author has a reasonable concern with the danger of starting any move with a back step and shows how the Baldosa can easily start with the side step. The video shows two variations in only 11 seconds!

Videos - Baldosa Box - Intermediate and Advanced

Milonga: The Baldosa Box with Variations 4:49
By Clint Rauscher and Shelly Brooks as part of their Tangology 101 videos. This shows the basic baldosa quite well, but doesn't stop there. This demo video is danced entirely in milonga style and shows many milonga moves, mostly as a variation on the baldosa. Many of these moves are intermediate or advanced so don't be discouraged.
Tango 205: The Milonga Box w/ Traspié 2:25
By Los Angeles Tango Academy. Starts with simple baldosa box then lets go with many intermediate and advanced milonga moves.

Dancing in a small space

Ejercicios - Tango en una baldosa 5:58
By Nany Peralta. Ok, this isn't really about dancing the baldosa - it's about dancing on a baldosa. It shows how you can actually dance tango in a very small space. It's quite amazing really, even if they do step slightly off the tile occasionally.
Dancing tango on a small table 3:31
Another wacky demo of dancing in a small space. The penalty for stepping outside the bounds is not trivial.
2011 Seoul Tango Week Farewell Milonga 3:36
This is another table dance, but the unspectacular moves are exactly what you see in a crowded milonga. The moves were mostly ocho cortados, rebotes, and small giros. Altho it's on a table, it's actually a useful illustration of small space tango moves.
Murat and Michelle Erdemsel Dancing in a small space CHICAGO 2:23
Good illustration of dancing in a small space.