Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Three Stars

Yo-Yo Ma described playing with the Assad brothers as "inserting himself into a completed relationship." That is a good description of the situation in today's featured video. This is not a new video. It was first posted on YouTube in 2006, but it was reposted today and their performance of Zita is worth a visit.

Sérgio and Odair Assad were students in their native Brazil when they first met Piazzolla in the 1970's. In 1983, they performed one of their transcriptions of a Piazzolla composition for Piazzolla and so impressed him that Piazzolla wrote a guitar duet, Tango Ballet, specifically for them the next year. The Assad's play that suite and their own transcriptions of eight other Piazzolla works on the CD, Sérgio & Odair Assad Play Piazzolla. This is music that belongs in every Piazzolla admirer's collection.

In today's video, they are joined by a Piazzolla evangelist, Yo-Yo Ma. His album, Soul of the Tango: The Music of Astor Piazzolla, has perhaps introduced Piazzolla to more music lovers than any other CD and his video of Libertango is the most viewed Piazzolla video on the web with nearly three million views.

Any time these three stars play together, it is news. In this video they play Zita from the Troileana Suite. That suite contains four movements, each devoted to some aspect of Anibal Troilo's life. Zita is a tribute to Troilo's wife. While the performance is not musically memorable - Yo-Yo Ma does indeed just insert himself, rather unnecessarily, into a well structured guitar duet - it is still a pleasure to see such accomplished musicians play Piazzolla's music.

If the video does not appear below, click here.

To learn more about Piazzolla videos, visit the Piazzolla Video site.

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