Ástor Piazolla

Libertango

            Every artist aspires to develop a personal voice, and every good artist eventually does so.  But few arrive at a style so personal and so reflective of a unique vision that, while nonetheless achieving great international popularity, it is strictly sui generis.  The music of Ástor Piazzolla is just that.  Single handedly he created a musical genre and style that began with the traditional elements of the Argentine tango, but was infused with so much of advanced twentieth century “classical” techniques, that the result almost obscures its popular roots.  Jazz, Stravinsky, Bartók, dissonance, counterpoint, ubiquitous chromaticism, and varied orchestration—they all are incorporated into Piazolla’s musical take on the tango.  His achievement might be compared to a hypot

“Spring” from The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires

            Ástor Piazzolla has created a musical genre and style that began with the traditional elements of the Argentine tango, but has infused it with much of advanced twentieth century “classical” techniques.  The result almost obscures its popular roots.  Jazz, Stravinsky, Bartók, dissonance, counterpoint, ubiquitous chromaticism, and varied orchestration—they all are incorporated into Piazolla’s musical take on the tango.            Piazzolla was born in Argentina, but moved with his parents in 1924 to New York City, living in Greenwich Village, immersing himself in the musical culture and atmosphere of the great city.  Jazz, classical music, the blues—all were his métier—all the while his family exposed him to traditional Argentine music at home, including the sound of the b