Argentine musician brings Piazzolla’s avant-garde proposal to Chile

Argentine musician brings Piazzolla’s avant-garde proposal to Chile
Argentine musician brings Piazzolla’s avant-garde proposal to Chile

Nicolás Sorín will appear this Saturday, May 25 at the Nescafé de Las Artes Theater to perform a show in honor of Astor Piazzolla. The musician will perform the repertoire that the Argentine composer presented at the Paris Olympia in 1977.

“I started doing this show in 2021 when the 100th anniversary of Astor’s birth was commemorated. It was a kind of bet that I made because we put together the band with musicians who are not originally from tango and we have managed to have a very good reception with the proposal,” says Sorín.

The Argentine musician has managed to perform at the Womad festival in Chile and also in Brazil and Spain performing classics such as “Libertango” or “Adiós Nonino”. But also, they have managed to generate a special vibe in Buenos Aires. Sorín with his band has performed unrestrictedly at Niceto Club every month since 2022.

“A kind of ritual has been generated in which parents and children go to visit us whenever they can, they sing the melodies with us, as if it were a soccer fan,” he says.

Sorín has also participated in the works of Alejandro Sanz, Juanes, Shakira and Miguel Bosé, among others. For this reason, the show she proposes has the particularity of combining elements of popular music, traveling from one genre to another. Going from the cumbia repertoire of Los Palmeras to surf music, rock and of course Piazzolla.

– How do you feel about touring in Latin America in honor of Piazzolla?

– All this is very surprising to me. I would never have imagined being playing Piazzolla’s music, much less touring Brazil, Chile and Spain. It is a fortuitous accident. It all started with an invitation from Pipi Piazzolla, Astor’s grandson and a great friend of mine. It was for the 100th anniversary of his birth. We liked the way it sounded and the connection that was achieved with people so much that we asked ourselves: well, what happens if we repeat it. And for two years we have been doing it at Niceto, which is a very emblematic rock venue. And a kind of ritual has been generated.

– What is the dynamic that is generated in Niceto?

– Is very crazy. People come seven or eight times to listen to the same repertoire. That speaks very well of the elasticity that our show has. We play with that a lot. It is a very playful flirt and things always happen. We feel like we are on the edge of the abyss. I think that’s what it feels like. Each show is very different.

– How was the presentation you gave at Womad here in Chile?

– It was spectacular. There were about eight thousand people. It was a very nice setting and we had a great reception just like when we went to Nescafé de Las Artes last year. Piazzolla has that special something in which countries like Uruguay, Brazil and Chile connect with ease. There is a Latin American gene beyond tango. It is our music. A kind of brotherhood occurs, as also occurs with Violeta Parra. They are artists who transcend.

– Do you think there is added value on your part by not being musicians who come from tango?

– That was a kind of bet that I made when I did the show at the National Auditorium. Astor was unfairly criticized a lot, he has been closely linked to tango. He incorporates elements of tango, he comes from tango. But I consider his music to be very personal. Very unique. If one closes one’s eyes and listens to Piazzolla, it is impossible not to imagine Buenos Aires with its buildings and its traffic. It is very Buenos Aires music, but at the same time very universal. This is what happens when you listen to Johannes Brahms and Gustav Mahler. One can play Adión Nonino in Indonesia and chances are there will be more than a few teary-eyed people.

– How do you rate the connection they achieve with the audience, considering that those they perform are instrumental?

– The first concert we did at Niceto Club was very magical because at one point we played Libertango and people started chanting and there was a lot of fandom. It wasn’t something planned. For us the public is something very important. When I see the public I see a kind of hypnosis. When we play Adiós Nonino we see how the eyes become moist and when Libertango plays people want to dance. There is a very nice back and forth. Astor’s music is played with a lot of heart and that’s why he hypnotizes in that way.

– In their presentation at Womad they included arrangements of “Bombón murderer” by Los Palmeras. How do you manage to fuse cumbia and tango with that level of naturalness?

– We play. Sometimes it comes out, other times it doesn’t. We read how the night comes and how the public comes. That’s why the round trip is very important for us. That’s the beauty of the show, it’s unpredictable.

– That speaks of a facility they have for combining popular music with Piazzolla.

– Completely. I remember when I started making the first arrangement of Libertango. So, while he was playing, I said to myself: And what happens if we go to Pantera with this. And that decision was what led me to incorporate reggae elements in “Adiós Nonino”, we also went to something from the 70’s, as if it were a car chase. Sometimes we incorporate surf elements. It was a good thing. We give ourselves license to travel between different styles. Always taking into account that Astor’s spirit has to be there. A tribute to Astor does not work if one does it timidly.

– What do you consider to be Astor’s main legacy?

– Piazzolla opened doors, when you open doors, you leave the game in other places. That has happened with Beethoven, for example, who has broken the systems. If you try to do something original it is very difficult not to fall for Piazzolla. It’s something similar to what happens with the Beatles. Tell the world: look what can be done. If one sees the elements of Astor’s music, one even wonders: How is it possible that this can be done? It’s like seeing a tropical bird with unimaginable colors. His legacy is that.

– In your opinion, is his legacy more present in rock, jazz or tango?

– I think it is everywhere. I consider myself a degenerate in that sense. I don’t see music as styles. The truth is that thinking about music like that keeps me up at night. My projects take from anywhere, so I don’t do that analysis. I think he raised the bar for music and that’s already a lot.

– Finally, Nico… What was it like directing Miguel Bosé’s orchestra at MTV Unplugged in 2016?

– He trusted me when I was 22 years old and I ended up living in his house for three years. For me he is like a brother or an uncle. There have been many albums that I have worked on and I have learned a lot from him. I usually have short-term challenges and well, I think that’s the beauty of music. I know that fulfilling everything is impossible and there will always be fantasies and dreams left to make. But I still am not able to leave this repertoire that we have with Piazzolla.

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