Tango: a tribute to Piazzolla

By Janell Meador

On the evening of August 30, 2013, in Doctor Mora, Guanajuato, Mexico, Alicia Rappoport performed her one-woman show, “Reborn in Buenos Aires,” to a full house of residents and visitors from San Miguel de Allende and the United States. Those gathered on the pleasant evening in Doctor Mora, far from a metropolis, were held spellbound by Rappoport’s seductive stage presence and vibrant voice. As she passionately sang about love, loss and patriotism, one did not have to understand Spanish or be familiar with tango to be mesmerized by her performance. Accompanied by Gabriel Fernandez on the bandoneon, who has played with such notables as Raul Di Blasio and Eugenia Leon, and Mauro Ledesma on the keybord, a young Mexican talent, Rappoport took her audience from train station, to hotel room, to the streets of Buenos Aires with a few simple props and her smart 1940’s costuming. The commanding performance allowed the audience a complete suspension of belief, and transported them along with Rappoport as she ran the gambit of emotions from euphoria to tragedy. The performance ended to the sounds of a rousing standing ovation from the appreciative audience. When the applause died down, Rappoport stood graciously at the door as every person in the audience stopped to hold her hands and tell her of their emotions.

Alicia Rappoport
“Reborn in Buenos Aires”
Sun, Oct 6, 6:30pm
Mon, Oct 7, 8pm
VC & Friends
Hernández Macías 83

Alicia Rappoport is, without a doubt, one of the leading advocates of “New Tango.” Astor Piazzolla (1921-1992), was world-renowned for the style in which he combined traditional tango with jazz, and classical music, and lyrics from famous poets Horacio Ferrer, Eladia Blasquez, Jorge Luis Borges and Pablo Neruda. Born in Argentina, Piazzolla lived and performed all over the world. Argentine psychoanalyst Carlos Kuri said, “Piazzolla’s fusion of tango with this wide range of other recognizable Western musical elements was so successful that it produced a new individual style transcending these influences.” Biographers estimate that Piazzolla wrote around 3,000 pieces and recorded around 500.

“Reborn in Buenos Aires” is a collaboration between Rappoport and her vocal coach, and stage director, Joseph McClain, the founder and director of the Austin Lyric Opera, Austin, Texas.

Trained in classic ballet and ethnic dances since she was a child, Rappoport began her singing career learning popular music with Luis Jara, a world-renowned, multi-award winning singer, and continued her professional opera training and acting with Joseph McClain.

VC & Friends in San Miguel de Allende will host Alicia Rappoport in a recital of traditional tango songs on October 6, at 6:30pm and on October 7 at 8pm. She will recreate her musical theatre performance “Reborn in Buenos Aires,” on October 23, for the Cervantino Festival in the Teatro José Nieto Pina at the Universidad de Celaya, at 8pm. The city of Comonfort will be her venue on October 24. For further information check www.aliciarappoport.com or email her at aliluz23@hotmail.com.


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