Buenos Aires Museums at Night 2012

(Photo by Ante todo, Pablo Zárate)

On Saturday night, the city museums will be open from 8pm to 3am. The cultural event will pay homage to Astor Piazzolla to commemorate the twenty-year anniversary of his death. Additionally, there will be live shows, ballet, and more at different city venues.

Some of the highlights of the evening will be:

The Teatro General San Martín Ballet will be staging Las ocho estaciones, by Astor Piazzolla, at the Planetarium starting at 8pm. Av Sarmiento and Belisario Roldán, Palermo.

Also at the Planetarium, there will be an exhibition of fashion and automobile design from 1920-2010 sponsored by Citroen. Av Sarmiento and Belisario Roldán, Palermo.

The Museo de la Cuidad will inaugurate an exhibition on the typical florid painting style present around the city known as Filete Porteño. Defensa 219, Downtown.

La Usina del Arte in La Boca will present a photography exhibit showcasing portraits of Latin American authors. Pedro de Mendoza 501, La Boca.

There will also be open bookstores in Av. Corrientes between 9 de Julio and Callao that will not only offer books but also different cultural activities.

Find the full program here.

Day of the Dead at Museo Fernandez Blanco

(Photo by rainy city)

In Mexican tradition, the deceased are remembered in a colorful celebration on the Day of the Dead. During this holiday, family and friends visit altars that are built for those who have passed, with offerings of sweets, marigolds, skulls (calaveritas) and more.

The Museo de Arte Hispanoamericano Isaac Fernandez Blanco takes part in this festivity every year. This year it will pay homage to the lives of Mexican author Carlos Fuentes, Mexican singer Chavela Vargas, the Argentine Astor Piazzolla, renowned for his tangos and composition, and Carlos Loiseau “Caloi” who was a famous local cartoonist.

Tonight, starting at 6.30pm, the museum will inaugurate the altar that will be open to the public until the 11th of November.  Additionally, there will be traditional Mexican and Argentine dances. The Museum is also well worth visiting for its collection of Hispanic art, and live concerts.

Museo Isaac Fernandez Blanco. Palacio Noel. Suipacha 1422, Downtown.4327- 0228.mifb_prensa@buenosaires.gob.ar

Emblematic Argentine Tangos

(Photo by Yellow Sky Photography)

La Cumparsita is one of the oldest and most famous tangos. It was written in 1916 by Gerardo Matos Rodriguez as a Uruguayan carnival march and then turned into a tango by Roberto Firpo who included pieces of some of his own tangos and of Verdi´s Ill trovatore. Pascual Contursí and Enrique Pedro Maroni added lyrics later.

Caminito is an emblematic tango of Buenos Aires because it was inspired by the famous location in La Boca that artist Quinquela Martin painted. Juan de Dios Filiberto, who composed the tango in 1926, was friends with the artist and the street took the tango’s name.

Cambalache was written in 1934 by Enrique Santos Discépolo for the film El alma del bandoneon  (The accordion´s soul). It was a criticism to the political upheaval and corruption of the time and was banned during the first military dictatorships.

Mi Buenos Aires Querido is the most commonly associated tango with Gardel. He composed it in 1934 and Alfredo Le Pera gave it its nostalgic lyrics.

Por Una Cabeza is another Gardel/Le Pera anthem from 1935 and is about a compulsive racetrack gambler. It compares the compulsion of gambling on horses with women. The world of the racetracks is very characteristic of Buenos Aires and this tango, as well as other Gardel tangos, is valued for representing it.

Naranjo en Flor is a tango from 1944 written by the Exposito brothers, Virgilio and Homero. The tango talks about the woes of love in the poetic language that Homero Expósito became renowned for.

Sur was composed by the celebrated Anibal Troilo in 1948 with lyrics by none other than Homero Manzi. The tango tells of lost love and through it the changes of the neighborhood or “barrio”, one of tango’s most recurrent themes that is directly linked to the city’s transformations and migratory patterns.

Adios Nonino is one of Astor Piazzolla’s most famous pieces and was recorded in 1959 in memory of his father, a few days after his death.

Tango Festival and World Championship 2012

(Photo by femuruy)

One of the most important cultural events of the year, the Tango Festival and World Championship, kicks off today, promising for a full two weeks of traditional porteño music and dancing. The festival, which will be inaugurated today at La Usina del Arte with a special presentation at 8pm by Pablo Agri and la Orquesta Típica Sub25, will display both traditional and contemporary tango until the 28th of August.

Some of the participating venues include the Centro de Exposiciones, where dance lessons, world dance championship, a Piazzolla music program, and most of the tango concerts will take place; La Usina del Arte, in La Boca, where there will be a special program of acoustic tango concerts, as well as parties and “Milonga Raves”; the Anfiteatro del Parque Centenario, where various tango shows will take place, the Teatro Regio, in Chacarita; the Luna Park, where the tango dance world championship finals will take place, and the Colón Theatre, where there will be a special presentation by TangoContempo on the 20th of August. Additionally, there will be a product fair and permanent exhibition of Piazzolla in the Centro de Exposiciones from the 15th to the 26th of August.

Some of the recommended events for the 2012 Tango Festival and World Championship include the Usina del Arte parties, where there will be remixes of electronic tango and late night dancing during the weekend from 8pm onwards; Gabriel Senanes Trio‘s Tango Monstrosos debut, with Pablo Agri, Pipi Piazzolla and Pedro Aznar as guests; the TangoContempo concert at the Colón Theatre on the 20th of August; the tango dancing world championship rounds, of course, and also, on Sunday the 26th of August the special tango dance shows that will be held at the Centro de Exposiciones from 2.30pm onwards.

The full program is available here.

Tickets to all the events are free of charge and for the Centro de Exposiciones, Anfiteatro del Parque Centenario, and Teatro Regio will be available on a first come first serve basis before the shows. Tickets (a maximum of two per person) for the Usina del Arte will be handed out with the following criteria: for shows starting at 5.30pm, tickets must be picked up at 2pm, for shows starting from 6pm onwards, tickets will be available at 5pm, and tickets are not required for the Usina parties. The tickets for the opening concert are being raffled by facebook. Tickets (again only two per person) for the Teatro Colón show will be available at the Centro de Exposiciones box office on Saturday the 18th of August from 11am. The Luna Park tickets for the dance finals will be available on Monday the 20th of August from 11am at the box office of the Centro de Exposiciones following the same two per person criteria.

Off the Beaten Path: Piazzolla Tango Centro de Arte

A treasure cove of mischief and distorted fantasies, the basement of the Pasaje Guemes, with its cabaret, theatre and restaurant, has charmed its eclectic public during the 1920’s throught the 50’s. So much so, that Antoine de Saint Exupery became a regular during his year in Argentina and author Julio Cortazar situated his story ‘The Other Sky’  in the art-deco gallery.  Now a days The Piazzolla Tango Centro de Arte offers the chance to visit the beautiful interior of the cabaret, theatre and restaurant whist serving dinner and staging tango shows. If you’re looking for great architecture, history, tango and all with a touch of literary allure (in other words everything good about Buenos Aires!), you will surely find it all in this spectactular tango venue!