Rules for the Official Categories (Tango De Pista & Stage Tango)

“TANGO DE PISTA”: open to both amateur and professional dancers. Residence restrictions apply. This category is bound by the rules and regulations of Tango Buenos Aires Festival and Dance World Cup. This competition category will be developed in 3 stages: a) Qualifying Rounds, b) Semifinal, c) Final, – from Thursday April 11 to Friday April 12, 2024.

“STAGE TANGO”: open to both amateur and professional dancers. Residence restrictions apply. This category is bound by the rules and regulations of Tango Buenos Aires Festival and Dance World Cup. This competition category will be developed in 3 stages: a) Qualifying Rounds, b) Semifinal, c) Final, - from Thursday April 11 to Friday April 12, 2024.

General Rules


  1. To be eligible to register, dance partners must be 18 years of age at the start date of the competition and must demonstrate – with legal documents * – a minimum of 1 (one) year of residence within the area of influence of the corresponding Preliminary. * You must bring a proof of citizenship or residency for the past year (for example passport, driver's licence)
  2. To be eligible to participate in the Official categories of competition, competitors must be natives or residents of Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos, South Korea, Japan, Timor-Lester, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Guam, Hawaii, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia Federated States, Nauru, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, American Samoa, Cook Islands, French Polynesia (Tahiti), India, Niue, Pitcairn, Samoa, Tonga or Tuvalu.
  3. No one will be allowed to register two or more times in the same category, but a person can register in different ones, with the same or a different partner. If both members of the couple are natives or residents of different cities, they will have to choose the city of residence or birth of either one, as couples are allowed to represent only one city.
  4. The following individuals will not be allowed to compete: staff of the BA FESTIVALS; organizers of Official Preliminaries and jury members of Tango Buenos Aires Festival and Dance World Cup and its preliminaries; sponsors and/or staff of companies that sponsor the PRELIMINARY, or another person with a permanent or temporary relationship with the Office of Festivals.
  5. Participants that have seriously breached the competition rules and have been disqualified or eliminated of previous editions of any Preliminary Competition, Buenos Aires Tango Championship or Dance World Cup will will not be allowed to compete. The elimination must have been instrumented in an official document with the due endorsement of BA FESTIVALS.
  6. A registration cannot be shared and is not transferable.
  7. A registration and subsequent check‐in implies knowledge and acceptance of these Rules and the Evaluation Criteria by each one of the participants.
  8. Registrations for the Official categories close on 31 March 2024.

Check In

  1. In order to check in, all contestants previously registered must attend on the date and time specified by OTCC of the Preliminary, with their evidence of residence. At this opportunity, they will receive the order number and be informed of the approximate dates and times on which they will perform in the different stages of the corresponding category. Those who do not check in will not be able to participate in the championship. A delay will only be considered in duly proven cases of force majeure, except in the event of circumstances of public knowledge.
  2. At the time of check‐in, contestants will have to complete a form with their personal information, and with any other additional information required by OTCC. On this form, they shall inform if they have had a work, professional or personal relationship with any member of the jury from the competition, in the last 6 months (180 days) prior to the championship, such as: having a personal and affectionate relationship with one or more members of the jury; having taken private classes with one or more members of the jury; presenting a choreography in Stage Tango that has been created, reviewed or prepared with one or more members of the jury; having one or both dancers of the couple hired one or more members of the jury – or been hired by one of them- to participate in the same event, performing exhibitions or giving classes within it. This statement made by the contestants will be evaluated by the supervisor and checked with the members of the jury in order to define if any of them will need to refrain from scoring any participant.
  3. All the information provided at the time of check‐in will be considered a sworn statement. Any contradiction in the information, subsequent to the signature, may be penalized by OTCC with the subtraction of points, disqualification from the competition, or any other resolution that this body may establish.
  4. The passport or other residency evidence and the registration form must be shown at every stage of the competition.
  5. All championship contestants commit themselves to participate in various ceremonies and events planned by OTCC of the Preliminary—such as press conferences, interviews for radio stations and over‐the‐air or cable television channels, etc.—if they are summoned for such purpose.


  1. The competition, in both categories, can be developed in up to 3 (three) stages, according to the schedule established by OTCC: a) Qualifying Round, b) Semifinal, c) Final.

    For the Qualifying Round, all registered couples will dance the first Qualifying round on Thursday April 11, 2024. Couples selected in the Qualifying round will participate in a Semi Final on Thursday April 11 or Friday April 12, 2024. Couples selected in the Semifinal round will participate in the Final on Friday April 12, 2024.

    In the Tango de Pista category, couples will compete in groups, dancing to three recorded songs, selected by OTCC.In the Stage Tango category, each couple will compete individually, dancing to one song of their choice. The music piece shall not exceed four (4) minutes and must be handed in to OTCC in digital format (e.g. on an mp3 file, or a Flash Memory Drive) during check-in. At that time, participants must state the full name of the author or authors of the choreography they will present. Couples may present different choreographies in the different stages of the competition.

  2. At the time of the competition, at least ten couples must participate in the qualifying rounds for the competition to be considered official (regardless of the number of couples previously registered). If fewer than ten couples participate, the Championship will cease to be recognised as official and the winning couple will not be eligible to compete in the semifinal of the TANGO BUENOS AIRES FESTIVAL AND DANCE WORLD CUP 2024.

    NOTE: If there are less than ten competing couples registered for Tango de Pista or for the Stage Tango category, the category loses its official character (stated by the Tango BA Dance World Cup/ Buenos Aires Mundial) and as a result, OTCC will have no obligation to grant the winning couple the Championship prize (consisting of full coverage of costs of travel and stay in Buenos Aires), and OTCC may choose to offer alternative prizes).
  3. OTCC and BA Festivals reserve the right to disqualify or eliminate from the competition those participants who:
    a) Do not comply with the rules;
    b) Carry out, in the context of or on the occasion of the Competition, inside and outside its facilities, any action of physical and/or verbal aggression against any person, whether participant, member of the jury or the staff, or general public.
  4. In order to ensure the impartiality and professional integrity of the jury members, contestants will not be able to participate in seminars, workshops and/or classes taught by any member of the jury, as long as they are in the competition. (Competitors who have been eliminated from the Official Competition will, after their elimination, be allowed to register for classes and schedule private lessons with festival maestros).


  1. In both categories, the jury will be composed of a minimum of 4 (four) members, who— understanding and accepting the rules of the competition, and committing to their compliance—will determine the score of the participating couples. The juries will be appointed in accordance with BA FESTIVALS and OTCC of the Preliminary.
  2. All the decisions of the jury will not be subject to appeal. By enrolling, participants accept this condition. In case of distrust or disagreement, participants may submit a written statement (in Spanish or English) to OTCC and NOT directly to the panel of evaluating judges. Any jury member who may have had a work relationship or been the teacher of any of the participants of the Preliminary for a period of at least 6 months close to the beginning of the competition, may refrain from scoring such participant. For this purpose, both the voluntary statements of the Jury and the information provided by participants when enrolling will be taken into account. In these cases, to get the couple’s final score, the judges’ scores will be added, and this amount will be divided by the number of jury members who actually voted. The final score for each performance will result from the accumulation of points, given by each member of the jury on a scale of 1 to 10 (with decimals), in accordance with the criteria described in the EVALUATION CRITERIA per category (mandatory document, please read below).
  3. The Jury will choose a winning couple in each category. Also, the jury (with the agreement of OTCC) may grant awards and special mentions to the second and third place, and will be entitled to award other mentions if deemed appropriate.
  4. In exceptional cases (power interruption, incidents on stage, etc.), the jury and the supervisor may determine that contestants should dance to additional songs to arrive at a fair verdict. Participants may not refuse to perform.
  5. In case of a tie, the couples with the same final score will have to break the draw, either by dancing two additional songs in the Tango de Pista category, or by performing a new choreography in the stage tango category, until a winning couple emerges from the votes of the jury.


Appointed by BA FESTIVALS, the Supervisor will bear the responsibility of ensuring the compliance of the present Rules and properly solve any inconvenience not considered in these Rules and establish or inform about the clarifying or interpretative rules that he considers necessary.

Filming & Photographing

OTCC as organiser of the Preliminary, reserves the right to record all the stages of THE COMPETITION, by any means known or to be known—including but not limited to filming, recording, photographing, digitalisation, etc.—by itself or third parties, in order to promote and advertise the event. The recorded material obtained will be exclusive property of OTCC of the Preliminary, who will have to turn a copy of it, as established by the Collaboration Agreement, to BA FESTIVALS. By entering the Championship, participants explicitly and irrevocably authorise the use of the recorded material, without this suggesting—or implying—any compensation for any reason whatsoever by OTCC of the Preliminary and/or BA FESTIVALS, in favor of any person or organization that claims entitlement to any right that may be invoked. This clause also includes, without limitations, all photographic material published and/or made available for promotion, advertisement, etc.

A couple’s registration and subsequent check‐in implies knowledge and acceptance of these Rules by each one of the participants.


Each category of the PRELIMINARY OF TANGO BUENOS AIRES FESTIVAL AND DANCE WORLD CUP 2024 will have one winning couple, who will automatically qualify to compete at the TANGO BUENOS AIRES FESTIVAL AND DANCE WORLD CUP 2024, starting in the semi-final rounds, except for the winners of the European and Asian Championships who qualify directly to the final, and representing the PRELIMINARY and not the city of origin or residence of the dancers, without exception.

The first prize in each category will be provided by OTCC as organiser of the Preliminary and will consist of two tickets from the city of residence of the winning couple to the City of Buenos Aires, including airfares and travel, cash towards accommodation and meal expenses for the days of the semi-finals and finals of TANGO BUENOS AIRES FESTIVAL AND DANCE WORLD CUP 2024, in the month of August - September 2024, in order to participate in this competition.

Specific Rules & Evaluation Criteria

Specific Rules & Evaluation Criteria for Tango de Pista

TANGO DE PISTA is conceived as a social dance, where the most important aspects are the music, improvisation, embrace and connection between the members of the couple.

Circulation of couples:

Couples, as in a real dance hall, will dance in rounds and will have to constantly move counterclockwise without going backwards. They will be allowed, if needed, to walk one or two step backwards at most always within the space of the couple.

The couple must be aware and respectful of their own and other couples’ space in the round in order not to break the harmony when moving around. If a couple performs more than two phrases in the same spot, obstructing the circulation on the dance floor, the Jury may consider lowering their score.

In the event that one couple stops the flow of traffic around the dance floor, it is not possible for other couples to go past them. If the jury deems it necessary, the round of couples may have to dance to another tango to solve the inconvenience.

Once formed, the couple must not separate while the music is playing. For the position to be considered correct, the body of one of the members of the couple must be contained at all the time by the arm of the other. It is understood that in certain figures this may be flexible, but not throughout the whole duration of the dance.
All movements and figures must be made within the space allowed by the couple’s embrace, so as not to get in the way of the other couples dancing. The leader may invite the follower to walk and/or turn to their right or left, without taking steps backwards on the dance floor.

It is not necessary for partners to break the embrace between tangos.

Evaluation Criteria

1. The couple may perform any commonly used figures of “social” tango, including “barridas” (sweeps), “sacadas al piso” (drawn to the floor), “enrosques” (twists), “ganchos” (hooks), “boleos”, etc., as well as embellishments always within their own space, without standing in the way of couples dancing around them.

2. None of the members of the couple may lift his/her legs beyond the line of the knees. Embellishments are allowed within this limit.

3. Jumps, figures that involve lifting both feet off the ground and any other choreographic possibilities typical of Stage Tango are completely forbidden.

4. The Jury will take into account the couple’s own interpretation in different styles as fundamental to the score. They will also consider their musicality, elegant walking style, but especially the connection between partners and the search for their own expression, as well as the ability to change the dynamics and speed accordingly depending on the tango being played.

5. Costumes: Outfits will not be taken into consideration during the judging process, but dancers are recommended to dress elegantly and accordingly. When choosing the outfit, hairstyle and make-up, please be reminded that Tango de Pista is a social dance and not a stage dance.

Specific Rules & Evaluation Criteria for Stage Tango

Each couple will offer an individual performance with a song of their choice that shall not be more than four (4) minutes long.

In case of having a problem with the choreography, the couple will decide whether to continue dancing or not, and the Jury will evaluate the manner and grace with which they solve the inconvenience; but the couple will not be allowed to repeat the performance.

If a technical problem should occur, the Organization along with the Jury will evaluate the repetition of the choreography at the end of the assigned performing time slot.

Evaluation Criteria

Participants will be able to express their view of the Argentine tango dance. This means that couples will be allowed to perform movements, figures and embellishments that are not directly related to the traditional tango dance. But the choreography must include traditional elements of tango: figure eights, spins, long walks, boleos, hooks, and the “milonguero embrace.”

Couples will be able to break the embrace and use techniques from other dance disciplines, as long as they are justified and enrich the performance of the dancer.

Aerial tricks and movements from other dance disciplines must not be excessive. This means that they must not exceed a third of the overall performance. The couple must include floor movement sequences throughout the whole stage floor.

Costumes: Outfits may be taken into consideration during the judging process.

The following points will be taken into account:

Choreographic composition
Preservation of the Tango essence
Use of the stage space.
Couple’s synchronicity
Choreographic effects
Music Interpretation
Musical accuracy

*Clarification about dance level:

Participation in both “Tango de Pista” and Stage Tango Categories competitions is open to everyone.

Professional dancers and amateur dances of intermediate level and above compete in the same category according to the rules established by Tango Buenos Aires Dance World Cup.

Adherence to these rules qualifies our competition to be recognized as valid by the main Buenos Aires event.

The distinction between a “professional” and “amateur” dance has less to do with the level of skill and more with a professional status of the dancers. “Professional” means that dancers make a living from teaching and dancing/performing tango, and “amateur” means that they do not, but it does not always imply that the level of the professional couple dance is superior to the level of the amateur couple. There are dancers for whom tango is their main source of income. They are likely to be good instructors, but their level of dance and performance can vary: the professional couple can be excellent at dance or not so great. On the other hand, there are good amateur couples who do not teach tango and get no income from performances, but have achieved an exceptional level of dance.

There is also the case of stage dancers who only dance choreographed pieces, but are hopeless when it comes to social dancing: they cannot dance in milongas. Finally, there are very skilled social dancers (people who only dance in milongas), but who neither teach nor perform tango. They might be excellent salon dancers.

To accommodate different ways in which dancers excel at tango, the two divisions for the competition were established: “Tango de Pista” (salon tango; social category for both amateurs and professional) and Stage Tango (performance category for amateur advanced level and professional level dancers).