Thursday, March 16, 2023



The Street Theatre March 15


Reviewed by Len Power


It was an evening to remember at the Street Theatre when Quinteto Astor Piazzolla gave a spell-binding concert.

These five virtuoso soloists that make up Quinteto Astor Piazzolla have been touring the world and playing the music of legendary Argentinean composer, Astor Piazzolla.

Modelled on Astor Piazzolla’s own ’60s quintet, the ensemble was founded by his widow, Laura Escalada Piazzolla, with the mission to protect and promote her late husband’s legacy.

Quinteto Astor Piazzolla

Pablo Mainetti on tango music’s unique bandoneon instrument, Bárbara Varassi Pega on piano, Serdar Geldymuradov on violin, Armando de la Vega on guitar and Daniel Falasca on double bass make up this extraordinary group.

Piazzolla’s music is an unorthodox mix of traditional tango, classical, jazz, and popular music like Neapolitan songs and klezmer.

With only a brief introduction at the start of the concert, the group played one number after another without a break. It was all Piazzolla’s distinctive music and there were a couple of well-known items presented, but most of the concert showcased less familiar works.

What was heard was spell-binding as these masterful musicians moved through the colourful repertoire of this extraordinary composer. While the music is complex, it is accessible and enjoyable to listen to. At times fiery and passionate and then moody and reflective, it’s hard to guess where each piece is going with the unexpectedly changing tempos. Driving, sensuous rhythms and beautiful melodies surprise and delight you.

Each of the musicians displays their virtuosity with dominant solo moments within the works, but it is when they are playing together that magic is truly created.

The audience appreciated their playing so much that these musicians returned for two encores.


Photo By Maurizio Velez


This review was first published by Canberra CityNews digital edition on 16 March.

Len Power's reviews are also broadcast on Artsound FM 92.7 in the ‘Arts Cafe’ and ‘Arts About’ programs and published in his blog 'Just Power Writing' at