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Tango Music - Essay Example

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While I was doing my research on the various styles of the Golden Age I would ask dancers that I met who, apart from themselves of course, was the best dancer of the style. In the north of the city the answer always came back "Portalea". I would ask why, and I was always told that it was the way he interpreted the music that made him the best…
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Tango Music
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Tango Music

Download file to see previous pages... And that, of course, was my mistake. He wasn't dancing the rhythm of the music. He was dancing the phrase."
The Tango is Argentina's cultural and national contribution to the European world. It has come to show the soul and personality of Latin style. The music emphasizes themes of passion and desire, despair and loneliness, jealousy, and its spiritual and emotional dance moves are memorable for their pictures of intertwined limbs and Latin machismo. There are differing points of view on the origins of the word tango but all researchers agree that it was used in America to help gathering of the black population for social aims. Jorge Novati in "Antologia del Tango Rioplatense" carries these meetings to the late 18th century in Buenos Aires. Alejo Carpentier in "La Musica en Cuba" says that the tango was in Cuba also.
Around 1880, in the gambling houses and bars, lonely men spent time drinking, socializing, gambling, and looking for a little romance in the company of women of bad repute, trying to step to the music. This gave rise to the new dance, tango. This proximity of the bodies in public was considered to be impossible and scandalous.
The black population in America used and adapted European forms for their entertainment, tradition and rituals. That is why the music and choreographic was transformed by the addition of rhythms and some other elements which were typical for African culture music and dance.
One of the most influential genres in the rise and finding its individuality of the early tango was the Cuban habanera. Using the materials of historian and writer Alejo Carpentier, the habanera developed in Cuba from the mixture of African rhythmic influences and the French contredanse. The habanera became a real sensation and was transported back into Spain, where it was known as tango Americano. The habanera came to Buenos Aires in the late 19th century and became very popular there.
Musicologist Jorge Novati, who continued the work of Carlos Vega, tells us, that the habanera had two versions: very popular and lascivious and another, more decent, which existed in late 19th century Buenos Aires. The popular version was danced by the African-American population at their gatherings, called tangos. The more acceptable version, meanwhile, was danced in the salons.
By the last decades of the 19th century, a distinct dance form of dance was developed, which gathered the inventions of the Afro-Argentines: the corte and quebrada. The corte refers to a sudden stop in the general walk of the dance. During this stop the dancers would show different figures that added to a new vocabulary of dance. The quebrada was an undulation of the hips, and gave erotic character to the dance. It became so popular that it start to influence musicians, they start to incorporate different rhythmic variations into their own music. The music they played was a mix of European popular dance forms, such as the mazurka and schottische, habaneras, and milongas.
According to Novati, the milonga had a short but productive existence in Buenos Aires, and is the ancestor of the early tango (tango criollo). It was really a rural poetic form but in the later version it resembled the rhythmic patterns of the habanera and became the main part in the birth of Argentine Tango. Musicians started gathering their repertoire and the first composers of Spanish-tinged tango-milonga and gaucho-influenced ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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