Astor Piazzolla: Fuga y misterio

Written by Steven Blier

Artistic Director, NYFOS

In category: Song of the Day

Published May 16, 2017

I am taking a small liberty and posting a “song” that doesn’t include any singing. But I have been so turned on by playing Astor Pizzolla’s “Fuga y misterio” on two pianos (with Joseph Li, of course) that I thought you might enjoy the excitement of the piece too. Something unusual happens to me when I play “Fuga y misterio”: I feel I become a different person. Music almost always flies me to a different emotional realm, but the physical act of pounding out Piazzolla’s tango brings out a Steve I have never met before. Piazzolla-Steve is burly, not overly polite, beer-drinking, confident to the point of belligerence. Piazzolla-Steve has a fairly heavy five-o’clock shadow and could probably use a shower—and doesn’t give a damn what you think about that, or anything else. He’s capable of a barroom brawl, and he’d deck you.

“Fuga” is in three parts: it begins with an actual fugue in tango rhythm (an idea whose time has come); then there is an aggressive dance break (my favorite part); and then a lyrical, reflective arioso whose melody is drawn from Piazzolla’s tango-operetta “María de Buenos Aires.” Piazzolla then plays you out with a reprise dance break. And during those four minutes, I get to be dangerous, unscrupulous, and too sexy for my own good. Excuse me, I gotta go practice….

or live, a little wilder:

or the duo-piano version we’re doing, with Emanuel Ax and Pablo Ziegler:

author: Steven Blier

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Called “the coolest dude in town” by Opera News, master collaborative pianist and coach Steven Blier is the co-founder and artistic director of New York Festival of Song. Here on No Song is Safe From Us, Steven blogs about the NYFOS Emerging Artist residencies, writes the engaging and erudite program notes for our Mainstage concerts, and contributes frequently to Song of the Day.


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