“On the one hand, in the presence of Richard Scofano’s talent, we feel that we are facing a pure experience, a tango with open veins…since he, with his bandoneón, doesn’t interpret the tango, he interprets the secret codes embedded in tango. Precisely because of that, I claim that Scofano is unique in the world. On the other hand, Alfredo Minetti is a concert pianist who transits with incredible easiness before the complex interpretive pathways of tango.” Prensa Recinto Universitário de Mayagüez, Puerto Rico (October 2nd, 2015)
The Duo Scofano/Minetti – bandoneón and piano – presents a superb repertory of Argentine Tangos and New Chamamé, with overpowering virtuosity and poignant interpretations. New compositions by bandoneonist Scofano, and classic tango selections arranged by both musicians, are rendered with astonishing power and indescribable beauty.
Chamamé is a traditional folkloric musical genre from Northeastern Argentina, originally influenced by the traditions of native peoples and Europeans who settled in that region. Scofano’s approach to Chamamé parallels that of composer and bandoneonist Astor Piazzolla to tango. Scofano is actively renewing the possibilities of the genre – hence New Chamamé – through the fusion of classical musical forms and harmonies, as well as influences from other world music.
The duo’s identity results from the merging of two diverse musical personalities. Scofano’s roots are in Corrientes, Argentina, but he is highly influenced by classical and Brazilian music. Minetti was born in Uruguay, lived in Argentina, and grew up in Brazil, absorbing rich musical traditions that travel seamlessly from the popular to the classical. Well beyond the profound lyricism and rhythmic diversity encapsulated in these traditions, it is the intensity of their performances and interpretations, their extraordinary level of musicianship and artistry, the originality of their arrangements, and the innovation of Scofano’s New Chamamé, that set the duo apart from other musical formations.
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Richard Scofano (Bandoneonist and Composer)
A superlative master of the bandoneón, Richard Scofano was born in Paso de los Libres, Argentina. Descendant of three generations of bandoneón players, Scofano is considered one of today’s most important bandoneonists. Beyond his recognized stunning virtuosity at his instrument, Scofano is also an accomplished composer (creator of the New Chamamé), arranger, producer and musical director. He began his studies at the age of five, with his father Ricardo Scofano, a living legend in the Argentine musical genre of Chamamé. Scofano grew up in an environment surrounded by music and folkloric traditions and, thanks to the support of his family, quickly became an expert and an authority in both Chamamé and Tango. At the age of fifteen, he graduated as Master of Music. At eighteen he was named the first bandoneonist at the Folkloric Orchestra of Corrientes. Richard always nurtured interest for the music of Paraguay and Brazil (neighboring countries) and is passionate about the study of the European classical traditions. In 2015 Richard wrote the score for the This is Tango Now’s production of Carmen de Buenos Aires, a 90-minute work inspired on the music of G. Bizet. This past October 2016 Scofano premiered his Concerto for Bandoneón and Orchestra, the IBERÁ, with the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra of Chicago (IL) under conductor Mina Zikri. At the same time, he released the CD ESTACIONES, with original compositions interpreted by his Duo Scofano/Minetti. On this CD Richard presents his ‘Nuevo Chamamé’. With over thirty years of professional work, he has taken his music literally throughout the world and is highly esteemed by his peers and audiences.
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Alfredo Minetti (Pianist, Arranger, Artistic Producer, Anthropologist)
A native of Uruguay, Minetti moved with his family to Argentina at the age of six and, eventually, moved to Brazil. In Rio de Janeiro, he studied classical piano under Ondine de Mello and developed a series of interests around the social and human sciences. He explored many disciplines beyond the performing arts, such as history, philosophy, archaeology and anthropology. Minetti believes that a complete artist needs a well-rounded education that, ideally, includes the human and social sciences. He earned a PhD in Cultural Anthropology (researching music) at Indiana University, USA. In 2008, he created Minetti Productions, a performing arts company and, in 2010, the Zero Hour Tango Festival. That same year, Minetti partnered with Fernanda Ghi and Guillermo Merlo, two of the most important contemporary tango dancers and choreographers. The three established the creative group This is Tango Now as a means to present tango under their philosophy and aesthetics. They produced the show Identidad, which toured extensively; this production was followed by a tango/flamenco adaptation of Bizet’s Carmen named Carmen de Buenos Aires. Through his record label Dianoia Minetti produced and played on Richard Scofano’s CD ESTACIONES and is working on a piano solo album exploring musical traditions from South America. An accomplished pianist, Minetti has performed in Brazil, Argentina, Europe, China, Canada, and the United States. He has a duo with bandoneonist and composer Richard Scofano and, at the moment, is working on the research for a book on musical interpretation.