That Guy Troilo

Posted: May 18, 2013 in El tango cuenta su historia
Tags:
orq_troilo THAT GUY TROILO

PLAYLIST

1. ESE MUCHACHO TROILO
2. QUEJAS DE BANDONEON
3. BARRIO DE TANGO
4. SUR
5. MILONGUEANDO EN EL 40
6. RESPONSO

SYNOPSIS

For many, Anibal Troilo is the archetype of the 1940s tango. Somehow, among the many luminaries that emerged during the golden years, Anibal Troilo has been elevated to the category of myth. This explains why his artistic achievements, his musical prowess, and his personal life have been chronicled in many oblique ways, the way religious writ- ings deal with the unexplainable mystery of faith. Ironically, though having been dubbed in the early 1960s “el bandoneon mayor de Buenos Aires (the premier bandoneon of Buenos Aires)” by poet Julian Centeya (a moniker widely accepted and adopted as dogma), his name does not seem to generate much excitement among dancers outside Buenos Aires.

The word that describes the Troilo style is complete. His solos demonstrate a sound that does not need technical jargon. He was not narcissistic, ostenta- tious, or exhibitionistic; the bandoneón in his hands, held on his knee, hardly moved. The stage lights would dim, leaving him alone in the spotlight with the mystery of his romance with the instrument. Those who have seen him and heard him can only describe the experience as the deep eruption of emotions that occurs when the magic of his sound takes possession of the body. Among the many merits attributed to Anibal Troilo were his intuition in selecting his musicians and singers and his ability to adapt them to his ensemble. The selec- tion of his repertoire also indicates his brilliance. His favorite composer was himself. Forty-one of his recordings were his own.

The life of Anibal Troilo moved around heartaches. A mild stroke had affected him seriously a year before his death. For 20 years he dealt with the excruciating pain caused by an arthritic hip. He once went through hundreds of cortisone shots within a 60-day period. On the morning of May 18, 1975, Troilo fainted, and spent most of the day in intensive care at the Hospital Italiano. That evening, around 8 p.m., patrons were filing into the doors of the Teatro Odeon for a performance of the musical Simplemente . . . Pichuco (Simply Pichuco). However, that evening the show didn’t go on. At 11:40 p.m. the heart of Anibal Troilo played its final note. The torture of the man had come to an end. The peace of his soul had begun. The city mourned the death of an idol baptized on the sidewalks with the teardrops of his sobbing bandoneon.

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