Sunday, February 28, 2010

Primavera Porteña - Yuri Medianik

A recent blog highlighted an Anibal Troilo tango waltz, Romance de barrio, being performed by a trio which included Yuri Medianik on bandoneón. Today's video features Medianik again but this time performing a Piazzolla composition, Primavera Porteña, on accordion - or more properly on the bayan - with a chamber orchestra.

The performance is virtually perfect. The chamber orchestra, led by Eduard Grach, is crisp and responsive creating a marvelously lively sound, well matched to Piazzolla's music. While not identified in the video, the orchestra is surely the State Chamber Orchestra "Moskovia" created by Grach at the Moscow Conservatory in 1990. The performance is in the Great Hall at that conservatory. Grach is a legend in Russian music circles - a great violinist, a great teacher and a popularizer of many contemporary composers including Piazzolla. His conducting style is clear and unique and his love of the music is apparent in his hands and on his face.

Medianik's credentials were reviewed in the earlier blog. I have since watched many of his videos, including several where he performs as a violinist, and remain very impressed with his musicianship. You may note that he has no music in front of him in this performance - the music is all in his head. Part of the familiarity that leads to such a capability may go back to 2005 when Medianik recorded a full CD of Piazzolla's music performed on his bayan. I sense that he is more comfortable on the bayan than he is on the bandoneón and hope he will continue to develop his bandoneón skills to bring us even more Piazzolla music on the bandoneón.

Grach and Medianik also performed the other three of Piazzolla's "Seasons" (Verano, Otoño,and Invierno). They are all worth watching. Refreshingly, the arrangements are, I believe, those of José Bragato rather than the currently more popular (but bastardized) arrangements by Leonid Desyatnikov.

If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Michelangelo 70 - Javier Nandayapa

Today's featured video brings one of the world's best marimba players and members of Mexico's leading nuevo tango ensemble together in a performance of Michelangelo 70. Javier Nandayapa is from Chiapas - the center of the marimba world - and from a family of marimbists. The marimba is said to be the second oldest instrument in the world (drums are claimed to be older) and are believed to have originated in Java - how they got to Chiapas is not clear but there are instruments there which date back to the 16th century. Most of the Chiapan marimba music is of a folkloric nature but Nandayapa (the name means Green River in the Chiapan Indian language) clearly transcends that. He is not only incredibly skilled on the instrument - he is also a scholar who has lectured and published on the instrument. He performs as a soloist, as an ensemble member and with symphony orchestras around the world. Among his seven CD's is an album of solo marimba versions of Piazzolla compositions.

In this video, Nandayapa is celebrating 20 years of performing on the marimba with a concert at the Auditorio Blas Galindo in Mexico City. While the concert featured a number of musicians joining Nandayapa, today's video shows him performing with three members of the Tango Nuevo ensemble: Víctor Madariaga on bandoneón, Frania Mallorquín on Piano and Mario Cortéz on contrabass. You can see a number of their performances on Madariaga's YouTube channel. While my exposure to nuevo tango groups in Mexico comes only through YouTube, this group is by far the best I have seen from that country. Their precision in playing Michelangelo 70 with Nandayapa shows this is piece with which they are very familiar.

There are two other videos of Nandayapa and Tango Nuevo: Oblivion and Libertango. Those two videos show the range of Nandayapa's skills but their performance of Michelangelo 70 is, in my opinion, the best ensemble performance.

If the video of Michelangelo 70 does not appear below, click here.

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

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Romance de barrio

Romance de barrio is a classic tango waltz composed by Anibal Troilo. In 1951, Piazzolla arranged and recorded the piece with his orquesta tipica and the singer, Maria de la Fuente (you can hear it here). While it is a departure from our usual practice of featuring music composed by Piazzolla, an exception will be made for Troilo to feature the interesting version of Romance de barrio provided in today's video by Yuri Medianik on bandoneón accompanied by Artyom Dervoed on guitar and Andrey Tikhonov on bass. The trio with the addition of a violinist performs as the Emotion Orchestra.

I believe Romance de barrio was first recorded in 1947 by Troilo's orquesta tipica with vocalist, Floreal Ruiz, singing Homero Manzi's lyrics. You can hear a sample or purchase that version on lala. The version by Medianik's trio is much closer to Piazzolla's version than to Troilo's original - treating it as a delicate waltz rather than as a typical tango waltz with staccato after beats. It is a very appealing arrangement, almost but not quite a classical treatment. Medianik is an astonishing musician who began on the accordion at age two and switched to the violin at age eight. He ultimately became a master of both and added bandoneón when he discovered the music of Piazzolla. There are a number of other videos which feature him playing Piazzolla on the accordion in an orchestral setting. I hope to cover those in a later blog.

If the video does not appear below, click here.

As an aside: for those who find a tango waltz to be a conflict in terms, I suggest this video of a fine, traditional tango waltz.

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

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Zum not Divertimento 9

Today's featured video of Zum (not Divertimento 9 as the video title suggests) as performed by Piazzolla's Conjunto 9 is one of the few existing videos of that famous group. The video is a clip from a 1972 movie titled Argentinisima by directors Fernando Ayala and Héctor Olivera. The movie featured a variety of musicians, mostly folk musicians, from various parts of Argentina. Piazzolla was the only musician to represent Buenos Aires in the movie. The first 1'45" have appeared several times on YouTube and the last 3'45" which feature the dancing of Nelida Lobato have also appeared but I believe this is the first time the two sections have appeared as a single unit and the quality of this video is much better than those available previously.

The Conjunto 9, sometimes referred to as the Nonet, was formed by Piazzolla in 1971 by the addition of a second violinist (Hugo Baralis), a viola (Néstor Panik), a cello (José Bragato) and a percussionist (José Corriale) to the existing Quintet. Performances by the Conjunto 9 are captured well in two reissue CD's: Musica Popular Contemporanea, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2. You will find Zum on Volume 1 of this series. The Conjunto 9 was disbanded in less than two years but some of Piazzolla's most interesting music was composed for this group.

Unfortunately, nearly 30 seconds of the video are missing at the end. If you want to see the Lobato dance sequence to the very end, you can view it here.

If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Giora Feidman

There are only a few musicians who can be identified in the space of a single measure. The clarinetist, Giora Feidman, is one of those few. Feidman has said, "I don't play the clarinet, I sing ... I sing through my instrument." And he sings with a klezmer accent. He is currently touring Europe with the Gershwin Quartet and today's featured video provides a look at Feidman and the Quartet playing Libertango (and a few other tunes) at a recent concert in Berlin. Listen to the music and also listen to the ovation at the end.

Feidman comes to Piazzolla's music "honestly" - he was born in Buenos Aires into a musical family, part of the Jewish diaspora from central Europe. The sound of tango was no doubt unavoidable but he was a classical musician playing at the Teatro Colon by the age of 18. At the age of 21 he immigrated to Israel and became a long standing member of the Israel Philharmonic. He also became a student of klezmer, the music rooted in Eastern European Jewish culture, and eventually left the Philharmonic to devote himself to the spread of klezmer music. He has uniquely combined his Argentine roots and klezmer in two wonderful albums: TangoKlezmer and Feidman Plays Piazzolla. The latter is one of my favorites.

The Gershwin Quartet is a perfect match for Feidman. They are fabulous musicians, all trained in Russia. The Quartet, named after the violinist in the group - not the American composer, plays anything that strikes their fancy - classical, broadway, jazz, latin and, now, klezmer. Feidman and the Quartet have a new recording, Klezmer & Strings - which you can also find in iTunes.

The musicians clearly enjoy Libertango but if you want to really see them have fun with klezmer music, watch their performance of Jewish Wedding. If the video of Libertango does not appear below, click here.

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

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Oblivion - Orquesta Sinfónica de Yucatán

Here's one I almost missed. The musicians looked a little casual. The director looked more interested in food than music. The accordionist looked like a dentist. Another community orchestra, I think, and start to move on but then I notice a smoothness in tone in the violins and a perfect pizzicato coming from the basses and the accordionist is playing one of Piazzolla's greatest melodies with a great deal of sensitivity. This is no bunch of weekend musicians - these guys are really good. The video notes provide the answer. The group is identified as OSY, Orquesta Sinfónica de Yucatán, led here by guest conductor, Roberto Tello Martínez. This is an orchestra with a history that goes back to the 19th century and includes some of the best musicians in Mexico. They play a very ambitious program and last year, in addition to a full schedule in the beautifully restored Teatro Peón Contreras in Mérida, the orchestra toured the state of Yucatán to take their music to a broader audience. This video is from a rehearsal for that tour.

Personnel from the orchestra are introduced well in the OSY website. The accordionist is identified in this program as Robert Zahrobsky but I can find no other information about his background. The guest conductor, Roberto Tello Martínez, a composer and professor at Escuela Superior de Artes de Yucatán, is well profiled in this article. Included in that article is a note that Maestro Martínez was also trained as a dental surgeon. I knew there was a dentist there somewhere.

A good performance by a good orchestra and good editing in the video. If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Michelangelo 70 - New Piazzolla Video

Thanks to Hugo Omar Viggiano, there is a new video of Piazzolla performing Michelangelo 70 with the quintet in Lisbon, Portugal. Although this video may have appeared previously elsewhere on the web, I believe it is a first appearance on YouTube and it is the first time I seen it. The video is not dated but probably was made in 1982. The Azzi/Collier book, Le Grand Tango, report that Piazzolla's first visit to Portugal was made in 1982 - he was generously received and the Lisbon audience demanded five encores after the quintet's performance.

Michelangelo 70 was written in 1969 or 70 to honor the move of a favorite performance venue, the Michelangelo, to a new location in San Telmo. Although it did not appear on a recording until 1986 in Tango: Zero Hour, it was apparently a favorite of Piazzolla's since he frequently performed it - particularly for jazz audiences. Fittingly, most cover performances today are by jazz groups rather than classical groups.

In addition to the performance videos, there was also posted a video of Piazzolla addressing the Portuguese audience and a television interview with Piazzolla associated with the visit to Lisbon. All three videos apparently come from a Rádio Televisão Portuguesa (RTP) documentary.

If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tango Ballet

The liner notes of Gidon Kremer's Tango Ballet album report that Piazzolla wrote Tango Ballet in 1956 to be performed by his Buenos Aires Octet for a short dance film by Enrique de Rosas featuring choreograpy by Ana Itelman. Those same liner notes report that the film and the original performance were lost and the piece was not heard again until 1989 when Piazzolla and his Sexteto Nuevo Tango performed the piece at Club Italiano - a performance you can hear on the album Tres minutos con la realidad. That is evidently not true since the piece does appear on the rare 1964 recording, 20 años de Vanguardia. Whether the 1964 recording is from the original film or from a regathering of the original octet is unclear to me. There are striking differences between the 1964 and 1989 performances - it is an interesting study in the evolution of Piazzolla's style which demands the attention of a musicologist seeking to demonstrate the development of nuevo tango. It is also remarkable to note that in addition to Piazzolla, José Bragato (cello) and Horacio Malvicino (electric guitar) appear on both recordings. The work moves through six scenes - Introduction, The Street, Meeting, Cabaret, Solitude, and The Street Finale - which vary greatly in texture and tonality. The original version, in fact, has some discontinuities which would perhaps not be noticeable in the context of a film but are noticeable to a listener. The discontinuities are softened a bit in the 1989 version and are scrubbed away in video featured today.

That video is from what has become my preferred chamber orchestra music provider of Piazzolla's music, Misha Rachlevsky's Chamber Orchestra Kremlin. This orchestra is a well balanced instrument with perfect control of dynamics and phrasing. I do not know who did their arrangment but I prefer it to the more flamboyant arrangement by Leonid Desyatnikov which is found on the Kremer recording. Neither of them capture the nuevo tango essence that infuses either of Piazzolla's recorded versions of the piece - in fact, they are not even close. Regrettably, Tango Ballet appears to be a piece that has moved entirely into the classical repertoire and been substantially transmogrified in the process. I can find no nuevo tango performances on YouTube or for purchase in albums on That is a situation which deserves correction.

If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Escualo - Ku-koku-soku-on

To continue the quintet joy started in yesterday's blog, you go from Moscow to Kichijoji, Japan. Then you take the north exit of Kichijoji station and come out to the big rotary. Take the big street on the right (passing UFJ Bank on your right), heading away from the station. Take the third right after UFJ, and find Star Pine's Cafe on your left, right next the Yodabashi Camera shop. The music starts at midnight and lasts to 6 a.m. If you were lucky, you were there on November 3 of last year to enjoy the group Ku-koku-soku-on (Google Translate suggests the name means Footstep in the air): five young women from Japan with an astonishing mastery of Piazzolla's nuevo tango. I am not sure if today's featured video, Escualo, came from that venue but it certainly came from the same talented young women.

The members of Ku-koku-soku-on are Yuki Takahashi on flute, Makiko Kitamura on violin, Waka Shibasaki on accordion, Yuki Arakawa on piano and Ayuka Iwasaki on contrabass. The group was formed in 2008 and plays a variety of music but it is clear that their primary interest is the music of Piazzolla. The group shows good control of precision and pace in Escualo and I am particularly impressed with the aggressive play of the violinist - this is not chamber music. If you watch their video of Adios nonino, you will be impressed with the rhapsodic introduction provided by Ms. Arakawa on piano and the emotive bellows work by accordionist, Ms. Shibaskai. If you watch their video from the Star Pine's Cafe, Contrabajisimo, you will be impressed by the solo work of Ms. Iwasaki on contrabass and the counterbalancing delicacy of Ms. Takahashi's flute. These women are all excellent musicians but what makes the music special is their sensitive interaction and their capture of Piazzolla's nuevo tango intent.

You can find even more videos on their MySpace page (including the powerful Piazzolla antidote, Clarinet Polka). If today's video does not appear below, click here.

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

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Live from Moscow

"And in Piazzolla's music we find everything we seek in any kind of music - the rhythm of heartbeat and vibration of human soul: ecstasy and devastation, happiness and yearning, dreams and despair. It seems to be a fused reflection of our present day reality."

That quote directly from the website of Moscow's Piazzolla Quintet says a lot but to hear it all you need to listen to their music. Their arrangements are fresh - not duplicates of Piazzolla's originals but very true to the original intent. Instrumentation is not identical to Piazzolla's original - a vibraphone replaces the guitar and, in these videos, an accordion replaces the bandoneón. The performances are crisp and nuanced - among the best I have heard. Members of the group are all classically trained musicians who have overcome that handicap and include Mikhail Khokhlov (piano), Mario Durand (violin, vocal), Yuri Medianik (accordion), Andrey Doynikov (vibraphone) and Mikhail Khokhlov (double-bass). All have a connection with Gnessin Musical College - a center for musical training in Moscow since 1895.

The group posted twelve videos from a November, 2009 performance in Moscow's Orchestrion Hall. If you are snowed in like I am today, there is no better way to spend an hour than to watch all of them. I chose to feature Concierto para Quinteto just because it appears to be the opening piece of the concert - you can find the others on their YouTube channel. For a bit of surprise, watch their Se potessi ancora. This is a lovely but rarely heard Piazzolla canción and it's even rarer to hear it sung (very well) by the violinist.

The group has recorded several albums but they are difficult to find. Fortunately, they have also generously posted quite a few mp3's for download on their website.

If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Friday, February 5, 2010

Summit Suite

It is not big band jazz but perhaps it is big orchestra jazz. Certainly it is a new orchestral approach to one of Piazzolla's landmark collaborations - that with baritone sax legend, the late Gerry Mulligan. That collaboration led to one of Piazzolla's best selling albums, Summit, released in 1974. Orchestral approaches to some of the music from that album are not unknown, but arranger Hans-Peter Preu has created a suite of tunes for bandoneón, baritone sax and orchestra which retain much of the feel of the original. Other orchestral arrangements have tried to confine Summit to fit into the space recognized as classical music. Preu has really arranged these for an orchestra which is willing to unbutton a bit and celebrate the jazz spirit of the music.

The Suite is spread over five videos - I have chosen to feature the performance of the title tune, Summit, but they are all interesting. Although not identified in the video, I believe the orchestra is the Mittelsächsische Philharmonie. That orchestra is led by Jan Michael Horstmann and the baritone sax soloist in the videos, Anja Bachmann, is a member of that orchestra. Ms. Bachmann and Preu have collaborated before on a similar saxophone/jazz orchestra work titled New York Jazz Suite so I suspect Ms. Bachmann is the driving force behind these arrangement. She is joined in the performance by other soloists Michael Dolak on bandoneón, Holger Miersch on piano, and Tino Scholz on bass. I might quibble with Horstmann's pace and emphasis in some parts of the suite but taken in total, this is quite a nice performance by all involved.

If you enjoy Summit, you might want to watch the other parts of the suite: Years of solitude, Deus Xango, Close your eyes and listen, and Twenty Years Later. As a bonus, the four soloist join to perform a very nice version of Escualo in the same concert, this time Ms. Bachmann is on clarinet. If you are impressed by the bandoneón and bass work, I suggest you watch this video of Cuarteto Rotterdam - you will see both Dolak and Scholz as part of one of the best and most authentic tango quartets in Europe. You can further enjoy the music of the Cuarteto Rotterdam through their two CD's, Yunta De Oro (2007) and Deleitante (2009), which are available on their website or through iTunes.

My thanks to Hans-Peter Preu. He has made an important contribution to the Piazzolla orchestral repertoire. I hope other orchestras take notice. If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Thursday, February 4, 2010

January 2010 Review of Piazzolla Videos

There were 510 videos of Piazzolla’s music posted on YouTube in the month of January, 2010. 381 (75%) of the videos were performance videos featuring live performances. The others were videos which used Piazzolla’s music as a sound track for photo or video montages. I highlighted my journey through these many videos in this blog.

Forty-six percent of the performance videos were in the classical mode, 21% in Nuevo tango, 19% in pop and 14% in jazz.

Here are the most frequently performed pieces this month (Libertango was the most frequently played – 29% of the total; the others follow in order):

1. Libertango
2. Oblivion
3. Adios Nonino
4. Histoire du tango – Café 1930
5. Invierno Porteño
6. Histoire du tango – Bordel 1900
7. Histoire du tango – Nightclub 1960
8. La Muerte del ángel
9. Milonga del ángel
10. Primavera Porteña

The top three on this list seem to be fairly stable month-to-month but the bottom seven change every month. Sixty-four different compositions were covered in the videos this month.

The performance videos came from 54 different countries. Italy posted the most videos: 62. The top ten posting countries are listed in order here:

1. Italy
2. USA
3. Argentina
4. Spain
5. Russia
6. Brazil
7. France
8. Canada
9. Mexico
10. Ukraine, Romania (tie)

There were fifteen Piazzolla original performances posted. Eight of these were new to YouTube: Three movements of Concierto para bandoneon y orchesta, three movements of Suite Punta del Este, an interview which preceded those two performances, and a short television feature which contains some new video. The others have been previously posted.

Quality of performance varied from excellent to bizarre. My choice for best of the month is the performance by guitarist Alberto Morelli of Buenos Aires Hora Cero.

The choice for most bizarre this month is a video of a flamenco dancer performing to a medley of Piazzolla tunes played (and played well) on an electric bass guitar.

I have put a table with links to all 510 videos as well as some more information on the videos on the January, 2010 link in my Piazzolla on Video website.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Two for Mañana

There were two strong candidates for the January "Best of the Month" award. This blog negligently passed over them as January flew by. These are too good to miss and it is still early in February, so here the are.

The first is a performance by former Piazzolla quintet pianist, Pablo Ziegler in a chamber quintet of his own choosing performing his arrangement of Libertango at the Miami International Piano Festival. Members of the quintet included Alexis Cardenas on violin, Jisso Ok on cello, Pedro Giraudo on double bass and Hector del Curto on bandoneón. Hector del Curto has joined Ziegler on many stages over many years but Giraudo and Ok are relatively new to his music; to my knowledge, this is Cardenas' first appearance with Ziegler - a good addition. The arrangement is focused very much on Zieglers awesome piano talent although both Cardenas and del Curto get a chance to show some improvisational skills. Ok seemed a little awed by the talent around her and was glued to her sheet music while the others improvised but added some class to the group. Ziegler is one of the few performers who have moved Piazzolla's music into the jazz world while retaining the genetic component of canyengue that makes the music special. The audience in Miami got a real treat with this perfomance (and they got good reviews)

The second video strikes quite a different mood. It takes one of Piazzolla's signature quintet works, Buenos Aires Hora Cero, and transforms into a mesmerizing guitar solo. The arrangement and performance is by Alberto Morelli. I have found essentially no information about Mr. Morelli other than hints that he teaches classical guitar at La Escuela Superior de las Bellas Artes in Mazatlán, Mexico. You will also find performances by Morelli on YouTube of Libertango and La muerte del angel. The performances in these videos are good but the perfect integration of the foreboding E-F#-G-F#-E-etc ground with the darting melodic interludes and sound effects shows a mastery of musical engineering on the guitar which makes Morelli's interpretation of Hora Cero great. You won't find a better guitar interpretation. Bravo!

Which one gets "Best of Month?" It's too difficult, I'll decide mañana.

If the videos do not appear below, click here for Ziegler and click here for Morelli.

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

One Year

Today marks the first anniversary of this blog. Two hundred and forty-six blog entries and more than 250 videos featuring the music of Astor Piazzolla have been shared. The sitemeter indicates there have been 13,175 page views over that year. That's a decent start.

If you are a regular reader, thanks for returning so often.

To celebrate the new blog year, I repeat the video that started it all. If that video does not appear below, please click here.

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

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Cracow Guitar Quartet

There are only a few great guitar quartets - Los Angeles Guitar Quartet and the Sante Fe Guitar Quartet come to mind. After viewing today's featured video of Libertango, I would add the Cracow Guitar Quartet to that short list. The challenge to such quartets is precision and balance. There are a lot of fingers which need to be coordinated and very little ability to signal intent. It almost requires extrasensory perception (or a lot of practice) to be perfectly synchronized as this Cracow group is. The problem of balance is also a challenge - many groups have one or two dominant players which ultimately leads to solos with accompaniment, not true quartet music. No problem with that in Cracow, these musicians are all equally superb. This is a group which transcends their local roots and deserves more international exposure.

The quartet consists of Jadwiga Wołek, Joanna Baran, Łukasz Dobrowolski, and Oskar Kozłowski. This is a young group just getting started. They have no recordings yet but they have posted a number of pieces from their repertoire on their website. You can also find several more videos of their performances on their YouTube channel. In 2009, the group's excellence was recognized with the first prize award at the 12th International Guitar Competition in Ile De Ré in France. Based on the performance in this video, it was well deserved.

I hope we will hear more from this young quartet in the future. If the video does not appear below, click here.

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

Monday, February 1, 2010

Dance Inspiration

Play the word association game with "tango" and the response will almost always be "dance." When Piazzolla entered the musical world, he wrote music to which tango was danced. But as his compositional skills increased through his studies with Alberto Ginastera, his arrangements of tango music progressed to the point where they confused dancers. The Azzi/Collier book, Le Grand Tango, reports of an occasion where dancer hearing his arrangement of the vintage tango Inspiración, " .. froze. Some moved closer to the band to listen. Others simply left." When he began composing in the nuevo tango style, dancers rejected the music as undanceable. Piazzolla had separated "tango" from "dance."

How times have changed. Today, Piazzolla's music inspires many to dance and we have three interesting improvisational dance videos featured today. All the dancers are remarkably uninhibited. All make me smile. With no better organizing principle available, they are arranged by age of dancer.

First we have young Luis Henrique, the most energetic of the dancers, dancing to a Piazzolla arrangement of the vintage tango, Malena. Second, two very expressive Japanese dancers, whose names Google translates as Ugazin and Kako, dancing to Libertango played by the group Ensemble Green. And finally, an unnamed dancer dancing, again to Libertango, in a most unlikely location: the grounds of the private residence of the assassinated Rwandan President Habyarimana. In 2008, that residence which is located in Kanombe, a suburb of the capital, Kigali, was converted into a museum in commemoration of the Rwandese genocide, the Rwandese culture and the Second Republic. There must be a story behind this dance and I hope some reader of this blog will eventually share it with us.

If the videos do not appear below, click here for Luis Henrique, here for Ugazin and Kako, and here for the dance from Rwanda.

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