This month’s video selection: Michelle Marsidi and Joachim Dietiker. It was performed at Tangofest Bielefeld (Germany) in 2013 with live music from Solo Tango Orquesta playing “Desde el alma.”
This month’s selection was submitted by Scott Chase. Check it out . . . and then see Scott’s comments below. Do you agree? Comments are welcome.
Video of the Month is a friendly service of the Tango Society of Minnesota Board of Directors. Enjoy!
To my mind, one of the most unique and charming features of Argentine tango is its ability to accommodate variations in tempo, pulse, cadence, and meter. Perhaps this is because Argentine tango has such an emphasis upon musicality, axis, and connection.
In this performance, the orchestra fools around quite a bit with tempo (slowing down and speeding up). There are even two “fermatas” (from the same Latin word as ferment) where the tempo, meter, and cadence of the music are suspended entirely (the pulse lives on). Usually the lead instrument decides when to end the fermata for the best, most dramatic effect (not an easy thing to do). At the first fermata (at 2:22), however, it is Michelle who determines the duration of the fermata and the alert bandoneon responds to her lead.
I bet you will not often see a dance in which the follower leads the leader AND the orchestra as well.
I also like this couple because Michelle is always named first. This is old-fashioned etiquette as well as assigning credit properly. It is, after all, the women who make this dance beautiful and elevate it to artistry. Maybe this is a metaphor about leadership and follower-ship that can guide us in tango and in all walks of life as well.