a page of madness

film writing by nicholas vroman

Café de los Maestros

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A Buena Vista Social Club for an old generation of tango players, Café de los Maestros by its music alone, lovingly evokes times long past. Director Miguel Kohan and composer Gustavo Santaolla (Brokeback Mountain, Public Enemies) managed to gather a rather formidable orchestra of tangueros from the big bands of the 40s and 50s into the studio to record a set of old favorites. Introducing a cast of virtuoso bandoneon players, guitarists, pianists, vocalist in the recording studio, Café de los Maestros takes a few breaks along the way for interviews, tasty old film and television cutaways, shots of Buenos Aires and moments of these great musicians listening, talking, living and breathing tango. The moments, interludes, and individual songs lead up to a breathtaking performance in the beautiful Teatro Colón. As pianist Carlos Garcia says in the beginning of the film, “If, when you hear a tango that is played well, you don’t feel your chest tremble, find something else to do with your time.” Café de los Maestros definitely will leave you trembling.

Originally published in EL Magazine, July 2010

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Written by Nicholas Vroman

July 1, 2010 at 1:14 am

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