Incitation to Desire
Performed on piano by Yvar Mikhashoff (1945-1993)
Tangos from John Cage, Aaron Copland, Lucas Foss, Conlon Nancarrow, and Dane Rudhyar, among others.
Tangos, tangos, tangos, abstract intellectual tangos, heart on the sleeve romances, passionate pillow talk tangos, solitude cafe cold coffee tangos, performed on piano by the late Yvar Mikhashoff
The movements of the dance are less presentable to a polite audience than those of the habanera, and as now performed in the cafes chantants of Madrid and other cities of Spain, the Tango has become nothing but an Incitation to Desire.
--"Tango", Grove's Dictionary of Music, 1944
Yvar was an internationally known virtuoso pianist, bon vivant and ballroom dancer who died of AIDS a few years ago. One of his obsessive passions in life was to commission tangos from living composers of all ilk. This collection is drawn from sessions we recorded near the end of his life, when his sight was failing but his playing was still brilliant. These short pieces are mostly played from memory and include some terrifically funny titles: "Fromage Dangereux", which is self explanatory, and the final "Thorn Torn Lips" which observes the condition of the gypsy dancer who was kissed before the rose in her mouth was removed.
Mikhashoff's tango collection tells us much about this seductive dance, but just as much about the personalities confronting it.
--The New York Times
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