Gerdy De Decker
cycled as a 15-year-old every week from Eeklo to Ghent for the pantomime class of Marcel Hoste. After a short collaboration with Frederiek Van Melle, he starts attending classes from pantomime- and theatre tutor Herman Verbeeck.
He creates pantomime performances and performs in cabaret programs. In search for the appropriate music, he discovers Astor Piazolla, and in 1987 gets in touch with the theatre tango. It’s the start of a journey, a quest for the authentic tango, that leads him to Lalo Diaz and Mirta Campos, founders of the Academia de Tango in Amsterdam. In 1990 Gerdy travels to Buenos Aires and attends classes from Antonio Todaro and Pepito Avellaneda. Back in Ghent, he establishes Recuerdo and starts with teaching, initially accompanied by Lalo and Mirta.
listened as a child a lot to the classical music of her father and imitates ‘ballet’ performances she sees on television. She is not allowed of her parents to go to ballet school, but starts with gymnastics and attends the music school where she chooses to play the guitar as well. However she continues to dance and move: she follows courses in jazz ballet, modern dance, folk dance, Oriental dance, flamenco, aikido, yoga, Alexander Technique…
In 1991 she signs up for classes at Recuerdo. In that period Gerdy has no dance partner. It’s the start of a lasting collaboration. In 2003 they get married.
Lieve & Gerdy chose for tradition and looked for teachers that appealed to them because of their singularity or their charisma as a dance couple.
Throughout the years, they collected an extensive archive of figures, visions and interpretations. Out of which they filtered what they loved the most and what suited their own style the best.
Their search and evolution resulted in a sober and personal dancing style, averse from all tango trends. In the salon they don’t dance from their memory. They let go of the figures and improvise on the different music lines: they dance the music. When they have inspiration and one of their favorite songs is playing, they show something that isn’t repeatable. An emotion, a being together, a silence or an unexpected movement within the music. This originates from the many years they have been together as a couple on the dance floor and beyond, their introversion and sensuality. One can speak of a Recuerdo style, that they try to pass on through their tango school.
Lalo Diaz and Mirta Campos were Lieve & Gerdy’s first sources of inspiration and tutors.
In 1993 Lieve and Gerdy travel together to Buenos Aires, later on more trips follow.
They were lucky to be taught by some of the old masters of the genre, among whom Antonio Todaro and Pepito Avellaneda.
From Pepito, also named ‘the emperor of the milonga’, Gerdy learned milonga, tango waltz and Pepe’s typical lively movements. After the death of these tango maestros, who raised a generation of famous tango dancers, they remain on the lookout for their original style.
With Raúl Bravo, Miguel Zotto, Milena Plebs, Maria and Carlos Rivarola, Alechandro Aquino, Carlos Copello, Graciela Gonzales, “La Turca” María del Carmen and Jorge Dispari they manage to retrieve this.
Moreover, they attend classes from Eduardo Arquimbo, Carlos Copes, Daniel García “El Flaco Dany”, Chiche and Marta ... and many others.