Who you gonna call? If you have a ghost problem, you call Ghostbusters. If you want an arrangement of a Piazzolla tune, you call Norberto Vogel. That is who the Pitango Quartet called when offered the opportunity to perform with the Netanya Kibbutz Orchestra. The very successful result of that call can be sampled in today's video of Invierno Porteño.
The Pitango Quartet is one of the leading tango ensemble in Israel. The group, formed by classically trained musicians, has been in existence since 2003 and provides tango "shows" as well as performing as a chamber group and with symphony orchestras as in today's video. Their repertoire covers the full range of tango music which they present with respect and authenticity. Members of the group are Amijai Shalev on bandoneón, Hadar Cohen on violin, Shachar Ziv on piano and Rinat Avisar on contrabass. I believe that all but the violinist are part of the original 2003 quartet. Pitango has recorded two CD's of tango music but they are difficult to find outside of Israel. You can find and purchase a limited selection of their music at their myspace website.
Invierno Porteño was the final of the four seasons composed by Piazzolla and the only one in which he purposefully inserted an hommage to Vivaldi. While originally composed for a quintet it is frequently played in orchestral arrangements, the most famous being those of José Bragato and Leonid Desyatnikov. The former is a bit formal but authentic; the latter is a delight to the ear but takes many liberties with the score. Mr. Vogel's is quite different and in many respects better than the others. It opens with beautifully written bandoneón solo - a perfect overture to the piece which captures both the Vivaldi and the tango essence embedded in the work. Mr. Vogel is a skilled bandoneónist himself and that skill shows in the this opening gem. The piece then moves alternatively but seamlessly between sections scored for full orchestra and for the quartet. The audience receives the full impact of an orchestral work but also has the opportunity to hear portions of the work in something closer to the original format. You will find Pitango and the Netanya Kibbutz Orchestra performing the other three seasons at the CarouselArtists YouTube Channel.
So, who are you gonna call? Mr. Vogel is an "arranger for hire" with a specialty in tango music. If you want a special arrangement of a Piazzolla work for your ensemble, give him a call at (011) 5197-6461 in Buenos Aires (or an email here).
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