Saturday, 5 November 2011

Music with Holes In - Biagi and the Dancing Flower

Biagi, to me, is music with holes in; it has an open, airy texture, like a Swiss cheese. A lot of people find it challenging to dance to, perhaps in apprehension of falling down the holes and embarrassing themselves. It's wonderful stuff, though.

Here, then, by the request of some very dear friends, (one of whom said that her perception of El Flete had been transformed by the Dancing Flower's interpretation) is Biagi's "La Viruta" danced by a piezoelectric plastic flower. Just in case you were in danger of taking this tango nonsense too seriously.

The Dancing Flower loves Biagi! Analyses in the comments please. (I know the video quality isn't too good - the original is high quality but my internet connection doesn't really have the upload speed for HD - sorry).


Anonymous said...

damn - that thing there has more musicality than me - which means the ladies will love him more than me!

Ghost said...

Took me a while to figure out how the flower is shifting between the rhythm and the melody - I'd assumed the flower would follow the rhythm, but actually the flower follows whatever's dominant in the music, so presuambly it's based on volume rather than pitch.

I love the calm, subtle following of the rhythm around 1.24ish :o) contrasted by the finish.

msHedgehog said...

@Anon: just dance piezoelectrically and you'll be fine ;)

@Ghost: yes, it just follows volume - it can't tell what's what - and I can control its interpretation to some extent by turning the volume up or down. If it's quieter, then more of the music doesn't meet its threshold, so it pauses more. If it's too loud then all of it does and it gets boring. With Biagi, fairly loud works well, but with each orchestra I try a couple of different levels and use the one that seems most interesting. A good dynamic range in the music makes for an interesting flower-bop.

Ghost said...

Lol - just tried it and a similar thing happens to me. If I turn the volume way down the music has less "ommph / spirit" and so I take much smaller, gentler steps with less momentum, so pauses feel more natural (plus I can't hear the notes that I'd bridge the pauses with).

If I turn it waaaaaaay up I get overwhelmed by all the stuff going on and get pulled 6 ways at once. I can get my head around it, but it's a completely different mindset.

Wonder what that means in terms of the volume djs play things at?

TP said...

Even the flower perceives the pauses in the music... :-)

Anonymous said...

"Music with holes in" -- what a great image for Biagi!

Tango Therapist said...

Ms Hedgehog! What a great dancing flower you have!

Okay, here is the analysis:
The flower has some very good clues about musicality for Biagi, my favorite composer. If you watch how the flower is making accents to his right, you will see they are almost always on the up beat. So a good way to get at Biagi is to practice by yourself on the up-beat. (Most dance on the down beat on everything.) So dance on the "and" through the whole thing, counting 1 AND 2 And 3 And 4 And -- even the middle part. In reality, the best dance is to switch between the up- and downbeats, but it is best to practice always on the upbeat. You will notice that the upbeat will never really go away.

The more difficult part of Biagi is that he has the strongest upbeat Afro-clave of all famous tango composers (but Pugliese and di Sarli do the same thing). That is a blog I have been planning to write for some time. Can I steal your flower for that? He's soooo cool.

msHedgehog said...

Hi Therapist - by all means, the Flower will be happy to make an appearance, I'm sure. If you click the "dancing flower" tag and then scroll down, you'll also see some Di Sarli, but I don't know if it will suit your purpose.