Tango Ballet

Tango Ballet

This register is a “classical” view (a traditional string quartet) about the popular music in Argentina. We try this music not to lose its essence and not to sound constrained or stilted. Having in mind that both in the Argentine folklore and in Tango, there is a wide range of records which vary in style from the most traditional to the electronic one, the Cuarteto Petrus contributes with the conviction that its interpretations may also contribute with something interesting for the lovers of the genres mentioned here. After all, the ensemble’s opinion is that the music should not be distinguished between the highbrow (or classical) and the popular. It should be distinguished among musical compositions of diverse quality degrees. We hope you enjoy our records with that view. 

Comments on the works:

Astor Piazzolla (1921-1992) composed Tango Ballet in 1956 in order to play with his Octeto Buenos Aires the music of the sound track of a film by Enrique de Rosas, with the choreography of Ana Itelman. The version presented here (a musical arrangement by José Bragato in 1983) gets the character of a suite, showing the characteristic style of its composer. Each mouvement resorts to a kind of Tango, sometimes rhythmical, sometimes melancholic or nostalgic, so that Piazzolla achieves a good balance regarding contrasts. 

The cellist and composer, Jose Bragato (born in 1915) was an active performer of the classical chamber music and tango. He was a member of the avant-garde ensemble created in 1955 by Astor Piazzolla, and he was also a member of other ensembles conducted by this great musician. Bragato also is the responsible of many well-known arrangements of the Piazzolla music destinated to diverse formations, and also author of several own works which have a personal style. The Tres Movimientos Porteños (Popular, Romántico, and Culto) for string quartet, were composed in the decade of 1960s . Twenty years later, its composer reformulated the material which is the version that we offer here. 

In our CD there are three well-known and traditional tangos: Nunca tuvo novio, Recuerdo and Flores Negras composed by Agustin Bardi, Osvaldo Pugliese, and Francisco De Caro respectively. The arrangements for the string quartet belong to the bandoneonist Pascual Mamone, who gave them a classical character like an echo of the orchestras of the 1940s with harmonies that acquire, here and there, fine touches of the French Impressionism. 

With a contrasting change of direction, as regards character, style, and language, but always within the popular music of Argentina, the Cuarteto Petrus performs the Tres Piezas Criollas (Lamento Quichua, Triste and Criolla) of which the rhythms and melodies are directly connected to the rich folk legacy of the Northwest of Argentina. They were composed by the well-know and prolific composer Luis Gianneo (1897-1968). 

The musical proposal of the Cuarteto Petrus is to briefly return to Buenos Aires through the tango Callao y Santa Fe composed by the Argentine pianist Saul Cosentino (born in 1935). This tango is a direct reference to a corner located in the Barrio Norte of Buenos Aires City, where there are two well-known and busy avenues which give the name to the tango. The work, written in a  “post-Piazzolla” language is of a rhythmic character in its extremes, with a central section eminently lyrical and nostalgic within the most authentic “tanguera” tradition.

Born in 1907, Emilio Ángel Napolitano was, between the 1930s and 1960s, a member of the First Violins section of the Orchestra of the Colón Theatre in Buenos Aires and also an active chamber musician. He wrote several pieces in popular style. We can listen here his Vidalitay and Gato, with typical Argentine folk rhythms, also of the Northwest of the country.

At the end, the Cuarteto Petrus plays La Muerte del Angel composed by Astor Piazzolla which is a famous tango that integrates along with other three compositions the “Serie del Angel”. The arrangement for the string quartet is, naturally, done by Jose Bragato. 

(English version by Lucía Liñares)

Pablo Saraví

Diseño y servicios web: