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Video: Astor Piazzolla: Tanti anni prima (Ave Maria) arr. Cello & Piano

Astor Piazzolla: Tanti anni prima (Ave Maria) arr. Cello & Piano from the soundtrack to the “Enrico IV” byMarco Bellocchio   Website: Sarah Acres – http://www.facebook.com/CellistInTheCity Website: Albert Combrink – http://www.albertcombrink.com Twitter: @albertcombrink Read more about the original programme HERE  

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Astor Piazzolla: Tanti anni prima (Ave Maria) arr. Cello & Piano from the soundtrack to the “Enrico IV” byMarco Bellocchio

Enrico_iv_film

 

Website: Sarah Acres – http://www.facebook.com/CellistInTheCity
Website: Albert Combrink – http://www.albertcombrink.com
Twitter: @albertcombrink

Read more about the original programme HERE
Sarah Acres

Sarah Acres

 
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Video: Ntyilo Ntyilo (Stanislav Angelov & Albert Combrink)

Ntyilo Ntyilo “Little Bird” (Allan Mzamo Silinga) (South African Xhosa Song arranged in the Style of Piazzollla) perfromed by Stanislav Angelov (Bulgarian Accordionist) & Albert Combrink (South African Pianist) in the Tango-Duo Show “The Boer & The Bulgar” in the Theater of Alexander Bar, Cape Town. Read more about the show HERE Ntyilo Ntyilo “Little […]

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Ntyilo Ntyilo “Little Bird” (Allan Mzamo Silinga)

(South African Xhosa Song arranged in the Style of Piazzollla) perfromed by Stanislav Angelov (Bulgarian Accordionist) & Albert Combrink (South African Pianist) in the Tango-Duo Show “The Boer & The Bulgar” in the Theater of Alexander Bar, Cape Town.

Read more about the show HERE

Ntyilo Ntyilo “Little Bird” (Allan Mzamo Silinga): Sheet music, original Xhosa lyrics and English translation:

"Ntyilo Ntyilo" Sheet Music and original lyrics

“Ntyilo Ntyilo” Sheet Music and original lyrics

I heard a sound from the bush.

I looked up, I drew near.

The sound I heard was

Ti, li, ti, li, ti, li.

Ntyilo, Ntyilo, Ntyilo.

That melody was beautiful.

I heard the voice from the bush

1 looked up, I drew near.

The voice said:

‘ There is trouble in the land .’

Tra-la-tra-la.

That melody was beautiful.

The owner of the voice

Was dressed in white robes.

The owner of the voice

Was dressed in red robes.

the words were

Tra-la, tra-la, tra-la.

The melody was beautiful.

 

READ MORE ABOUT THE COMPOSER HERE.

 

The Boer & The Bulgar: Tango Duo Concert & Milonga

These 2 musicians have worked together for over a decade on different stages in different countries.

In this show they will explore their cultures and their interests, centering around the Tango Music which they have been performing together for over a decade. They will perform Tango music from both their cultures, Bulgaria and South Africa, and there will be space on the stage for Tango Dancers to take the stage. So if you are a Tango Dancer, bring your dancing shoes along, and if you are simply interested in watching, you can have a drink and relax and enjoy the sights.

The idea for this show came during their tour to Germany where they performed in the prestigious Leipzig Gewandhaus, and performed in Tango Clubs in Berlin, Leipzig and Tubingen.

Bookings essential!
Limited seats!

Bar and Restaurant available before, between and after shows.

When: Tuesday 22 October 2013,
Time: 7:30 for 8 pm & 9:30 for 10 pm

Price: R80

Bar and Restaurant available before, between and after shows.

Alexander Bar, 76 Strand Street , Cape Town CBD
MAP AND DIRECTIONS
VENUE PHOTOS

Booking: BOOK ONLINE
Information: 021 300 1652 / info@alexanderbar.co.za

ALEXANDER BAR ON FACEBOOK HERE
TWITTER : @alexanderbarct     /     @albertcombrink   /   @StanislavMusic      /     @TangoBand

CT TANGO ENSEMBLE ON FACEBOOK HERE

CT TANGO ENSEMBLE WEBSITE HERE.

ALBERT COMBRINK ARTIST PAGE ON FACEBOOK HERE

 

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Video: Malaika (Stanislav Angelov & Albert Combrink)

  Malaika (Swahili Folk Song) perfromed by Stanislav Angelov (Bulgarian Accordionist) & Albert Combrink (South African Pianist) in the Tango-Duo Show “The Boer & The Bulgar” in the Theater of Alexander Bar, Cape Town Read more about the show HERE: More about the song “Malaika” I grew up in Apartheid South Africa, and much of […]

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AlexanderCPTLogo

 

Malaika (Swahili Folk Song) perfromed by Stanislav Angelov (Bulgarian Accordionist) & Albert Combrink (South African Pianist) in the Tango-Duo Show “The Boer & The Bulgar” in the Theater of Alexander Bar, Cape Town

Read more about the show HERE:

More about the song “Malaika”

I grew up in Apartheid South Africa, and much of my South African musical heritage was lost on me – in my ignorance, or simply from never being in contact with it. I had heard of the wonderful South African singer Miriam Makeba, and it was in my varsity years, when the policital questions became too loud to remain unanswered, that I discovered the magical artistry of this woman, a singer who was living in political exile. I fell in love with her and with this song, the first moment I heard it. It had a melancholy which was iresistible.

“My baby, I love you, and if ony I had enough money to afford to come and get you, I would have married you

How simple. How touching. How absolutely heartbreachingly tragic. Sung by a woman far from her homeland, missing her family and loved ones, forbidden even from entering the borders of the land where her ancestors are burried. Heard by a boy exiled in all but name from a community that simply could not or would not connect with his political, social or sexual views. When she sang, she sang my sadness too. The sadness of incomprehension which a child feels when it knows there is something terribly wrong, but it has neither the experience, nor the vocabulary to understand it, let alone do anything about it.

Malaika is a Swahili song. Malaika generally means angel in Swahili. As is the case with many Swahili words, it is ultimately derived from Arabic. An alternative Swahili meaning is a “baby” or “small child“,hence at least one particular traditional version of the song titled Malaika being commonly used as a lullaby throughout East Africa.

 

“Malaika”: Lyrics in English and Swahili

Malaika, nakupenda Malaika
Angel, I love you angel
Malaika, nakupenda Malaika
Angel, I love you angel
Nami nifanyeje, kijana mwenzio
and I, what should I do, your young friend
Nashindwa na mali sina, we,
I am defeated by the bride price that I don’t have
Ningekuoa Malaika
I would marry you, angel
Nashindwa na mali sina, we,
I am defeated by the bride price that I don’t have
Ningekuoa Malaika
I would marry you, angel

Kidege, hukuwaza kidege
Little bird, I think of you little bird
Nami nifanyeje, kijana mwenzio
and I, what should I do, your young friend
Nashindwa na mali sina, we,
I am defeated by the bride price that I don’t have
Ningekuoa Malaika
I would marry you, angel
Nashindwa na mali sina, we,
I am defeated by the bride price that I don’t have
Ningekuoa, Malaika
I would marry you, angel

Pesa zasumbua roho yangu
The money (which I do not have) depresses my soul
Pesa zasumbua roho yangu
the money (which I do not have) depresses my soul
Nami nifanyeje, kijana mwenzio
and I, what should I do, your young friend
Ningekuoa Malaika
I would marry you, angel
Nashndwa na mali sina, we
I am defeated by the bride price that I don’t have
Ningekuoa Malaika
I would marry you, angel

The Boer & The Bulgar: Tango Duo Concert & Milonga

These 2 musicians have worked together for over a decade on different stages in different countries.

In this show they will explore their cultures and their interests, centering around the Tango Music which they have been performing together for over a decade. They will perform Tango music from both their cultures, Bulgaria and South Africa, and there will be space on the stage for Tango Dancers to take the stage. So if you are a Tango Dancer, bring your dancing shoes along, and if you are simply interested in watching, you can have a drink and relax and enjoy the sights.

The idea for this show came during their tour to Germany where they performed in the prestigious Leipzig Gewandhaus, and performed in Tango Clubs in Berlin, Leipzig and Tubingen.

Bookings essential!
Limited seats!

Bar and Restaurant available before, between and after shows.

When: Tuesday 22 October 2013,
Time: 7:30 for 8 pm & 9:30 for 10 pm

Price: R80

Bar and Restaurant available before, between and after shows.

Alexander Bar, 76 Strand Street , Cape Town CBD
MAP AND DIRECTIONS
VENUE PHOTOS

Booking: BOOK ONLINE
Information: 021 300 1652 / info@alexanderbar.co.za

ALEXANDER BAR ON FACEBOOK HERE
TWITTER : @alexanderbarct     /     @albertcombrink   /   @StanislavMusic      /     @TangoBand

CT TANGO ENSEMBLE ON FACEBOOK HERE

CT TANGO ENSEMBLE WEBSITE HERE.

ALBERT COMBRINK ARTIST PAGE ON FACEBOOK HERE.

Albert Combrink & Stanislav Angelov

Albert Combrink & Stanislav Angelov

____

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Tango in Cape Town – where to find it

I receive many comments and mails from Tango Lovers asking me where to find Tango in Cape Town. Lessons and Milongas are offered by a variety of venues. I put together this post of as much information as I have, simply in the spirit of “Tango-Unity”, and it will be updated and revised occasionally. I […]

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I receive many comments and mails from Tango Lovers asking me where to find Tango in Cape Town. Lessons and Milongas are offered by a variety of venues. I put together this post of as much information as I have, simply in the spirit of “Tango-Unity”, and it will be updated and revised occasionally. I know I have left people off, and it is not done in malice. Just drop me an email or leave a comment and i will be happy to update.

CT Tango Ensemble: Petrus de Beer, Charles Lazar, Albert Combrink, Stanislav Angelov

CT Tango Ensemble: Petrus de Beer, Charles Lazar, Albert Combrink, Stanislav Angelov

Cape Town Tango Ensemble:

The only Tango Orchestra in Cape Town, South Africa, and possibly even Africa. We play for serious concerts and recitals, as well as corporate functions and we are regularly invited to provide live music for dancing at Milongas hosted by various dancing-schools and dance-community members in South Africa.

Cape Tango Ensemble Website

Cape Tango Ensemble Facebook

Cape Tango Ensemble Twitter: @stanislavmusic @TangoBand @albertcombrink

Cape Town Tango Community

Tango Community on Facebook

TangoCapeTown

TangoCapeTown Website.
TangoCapeTown Mailinglist and email: info.tangocapetown@gmail.com

Libertango Cape Town

Libertango Website

Libertango Facebook

El Cacha Tango Company

El Cacha on Facebook

El Cacha Website

Cape Tango (Los Fanaticos)

Cape Tango Website.

I Love Tango in Cape Peninsula

Cape Town Tango Community page on Facebook

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Summertime (Gershwin): Louise Howlett, Albert Combrink, Charles Lazar (live)

“Summertime”, Louise Howlett (vocals), Albert Combrink (Piano), Charles Lazar (Double Bass) – from the Opera “Porgy & Bess” by George & Ira Gershwin, after the novel by DuBose Heyward. Recorded Live at Alexander Bar, Cape Town. This recording was catalogued in “The Summertime Connection”, a website dedicated to this extraordinary song. Read more about Louise […]

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“Summertime”, Louise Howlett (vocals), Albert Combrink (Piano), Charles Lazar (Double Bass) – from the Opera “Porgy & Bess” by George & Ira Gershwin, after the novel by DuBose Heyward.

Recorded Live at Alexander Bar, Cape Town. This recording was catalogued in “The Summertime Connection”, a website dedicated to this extraordinary song.

Read more about Louise Howlett HERE:
http://www.louisehowlett.com

Read more about Albert Combrink HERE:
http://www.albertcombrink.com

Buy their CD “Night Sessions” HERE:
https://www.cdbaby.com/cd/combrinkhowlett

Follow Albert on Twitter:
@albertcombrink

Read more about the original show HERE:
http://www.albertcombrink.com/2013/05/08/lady-sings-the-blues-at-the-alexander-bar-famous-women-of-jazz-blues/

Visit Alexander Bar’s Website:
http://alexanderbar.co.za/shows-upstairs/

Find Alexander Bar on Twitter:
@AlexanderBarCT

Poster Design: Bryn van Wyk (bryn@brynvanwyk.com)

Find “The Summertime Connection”on FACEBOOK.

More about Gershwin’s song “Summertime”:

An Opera Aria that became a Jazz Standard, Gershwin’s “Summertime” has gained international fame as one of the most recorded songs of all time, with almost 35 ooo known recordings. Gershwin began composing the song/opera aria, for inclusion in his opera Porgy and Bess (America’s first serious “Jazz-Opera” after Scott Joplin’s Treemonisha” ) in December 1933. He attempted to create his own spiritual in the style of the African American folk music of the period. 

Two main sources of inspiration are usually quoted about this song:
1) The Book by DuBose Heyward had been presented as a play, and the spiritual “Sometimes I feel, like a motherless child”) was sung at the end. [Rosenberg, Deena (1991). Fascinating Rhythm: The Collaboration of George and Ira Gershwin. Penguin Books USA. ISBN 0-525-93356-5., p. 281]  The opening intervals of  “Summertime” do contain a melodic cell that reminds one of the spiritual.

2) The Ukrainian-Canadian composer and singer Alexis Kochan has suggested that some part of Gershwin’s inspiration may have come from having heard the Ukrainian lullaby, Oi Khodyt Son Kolo Vikon (A Dream Passes By The Windows) at a New York City performance by Oleksander Koshetz‘s Ukrainian National Chorus in 1929 (or 1926). [Helen Smindak DATELINE NEW YORK: Kochan and Kytasty delve deeply into musical past, The Ukrainian Weekly, 24 May 1998]

Gershwin had completed setting DuBose Heyward’s poem to music by February 1934, and spent the next 20 months completing and orchestrating the score of the opera. [Howard Pollack, George Gershwin: his life and work, University of California Press, 2006, p.589]

The song is sung multiple times throughout Porgy and Bess, first by Clara in Act I as a lullaby and soon after as counterpoint to the craps game scene, in Act II in a reprise by Clara, and in Act III by Bess, singing to Clara’s baby. It was recorded for the first time by Abbie Mitchell on 19 July 1935, with George Gershwin playing the piano and conducting the orchestra (on: George Gershwin Conducts Excerpts from Porgy & Bess, Mark 56 667).

Albert Combrink (Piano) (Louise Howlett (Vocalist)

Albert Combrink (Piano) (Louise Howlett (Vocalist)

“Summertime” (George & Ira Gershwin, after the book by DuBose Heyward) LYRICS:

Summertime,
And the livin’ is easy
Fish are jumpin’
And the cotton is high

Your daddy’s rich
And your mamma’s good lookin’
So hush little baby
Don’t you cry

One of these mornings
You’re going to rise up singing
Then you’ll spread your wings
And you’ll take to the sky

But till that morning
There’s a’nothing can harm you
With daddy and mamma standing by

Summertime,
And the livin’ is easy
Fish are jumpin’
And the cotton is high

Your daddy’s rich
And your mamma’s good lookin’
So hush little baby
Don’t you cry

 

Sheet Music for “Summertime” (George & Ira Gershwin, after the book by DuBose Heyward) in A Minor: Vocal Line and Chords (Jazz Fake Book)

Summertime Sheet Music A Minor Jazz Fake Book

Summertime Sheet Music A Minor Jazz Fake Book

Sheet Music for “Summertime” (George & Ira Gershwin, after the book by DuBose Heyward) in D Minor: Instrumental Line and Chords (Colorado Jazz Fake Book)

Summertime Sheet Music D Minor, Colorado Jazz Fake Book

Summertime Sheet Music D Minor, Colorado Jazz Fake Book

Possible inspirations for the song “Summertime” (George & Ira Gershwin, after the book by DuBose Heyward):

~”Oy Khodyt Son Kolo Vikon” is a Ukrainian lullaby. The title is usually translated into English as “The Dream Passes by the Windows”. (Text,Transliteration and Translation uncredited)

Ukrainian Translated into English Transliterated into English
Ой ходить сон, коло вікон.
А дрімота коло плота.
Питається сон дрімоти:
“Де ж ми будем ночувати?”Де хатонька теплесенька,
Де дитина малесенька,
Туди підем ночувати,
І дитинку колисати.Там ми будем спочивати,
І дитинку присипляти:
Спати, спати, соколятко,
Спати, спати, голуб’ятко.
The Dream passes by the window,
And Sleep by the fence.
The Dream asks Sleep:
“Where should we rest tonight?”Where the house is warm,
Where the child is small,
There we will go,
And rock the child to sleep.There we will sleep,
and will rock the child:
Sleep, sleep, my little falcon,
Sleep, sleep, my little dove.
Oy khodyt’ son, kolo vikon.
A drimota kolo plota.
Pytayetsya son drimoty:
De zh my budem nochuvaty?De khaton’ka teplesen’ka,
De dytynka malesen’ka,
Tudy pidem nochuvaty
I dytynku kolysaty.Tam budem spochyvaty,
I dytynku prysypl’yaty:
Spaty, spaty, sokol’yatko,
Spaty, spaty, holubyatko.

~A most haunting, soulful and moving version of the spiritual “Sometimes I feel like a motherless child”, sung by  Odetta. Mournful, haunting vocals, the ethereal choir and Bill Lee’s [Spike's daddy] bass make this unforgettable.

~ And here is “Summertime” is as heard in the original opera, “Porgy and Bess”. Clara is acted by Paula Ingram and sung by Harolyn Blackwell.
The London Philharmonic and The Glyndebourne Chorus are conducted by Sir Simon Rattle.

~ And here is “Summertime” given the full Jazz treatment like only Miles Davis could.

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Piazzolla’s Oblivion: Tango and the Mystery of Divine Love

Piazzolla’s Oblivion: Tango and the Mystery of Divine Love Written as part of the Soundtrack of Marco Bellocchio’s 1984 film Enrico IV, the hauntingly beautiful Oblivion has had great success on the concert stages of the world. [you can watch the trailer to this film at the bottom of this page.] From superstars in the […]

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Piazzolla’s Oblivion: Tango and the Mystery of Divine Love

Written as part of the Soundtrack of Marco Bellocchio’s 1984 film Enrico IV, the hauntingly beautiful Oblivion has had great success on the concert stages of the world. [you can watch the trailer to this film at the bottom of this page.]

Enrico_iv_film
From superstars in the classical world such as violinist Gidon Kremer and cellist Yo-Yo Ma, to superstars in the jazz arena such as Chick Corea and Al de Meola, the timeless quality of this piece has revealed itself as a conduit for an astounding array of emotional and musical treatments. Much as Bach has been transposed, transcribed, re-arranged, re-thought and re-assembled in many forms while remaining true to its internal essence – and still remain undeniably “Bach” – the same can be said for much of the work of Ástor Pantaleón Piazzolla (1921-1992)

One Tango, Many Incarnations

I have been performing this Tango for over a decade now. With the CT Tango Ensemble we have progressed from the melodic line played on Accordeon, to the subtly more “crying” of an actual Bandoneon, the first instrument for which it was conceived. We have added guitar, sometimes saxophone, violin obviously, and on our 2010 German Tour to perform at the Leipzig Gewandhaus, even added an orchestra of Accordeons.

We have had formal “Performance Dancers” – Mark Hoeben and Ina Wichterich (in an astonishing red dress), performed it on a giant chess-board set for Marthinus Basson’s “Tango del Fuego”, and many times since.

Mark Hoeben & Ina Wichterich

Mark Hoeben & Ina Wichterich

We performed it at the Leipzig Gewandhaus with Angela Salat and Andreas Küttner, two of Germany’s finest performers.

 Angela Sallat & Andreas Küttner perform with CT Tango Ensemble: Leipzig Gewandhaus

Angela Sallat & Andreas Küttner perform with CT Tango Ensemble: Leipzig Gewandhaus

And then of course, we have performed it simply for Tango Dancers to dance to, at various Milongas from Cape Town to Germany. I also had the joy of performing it during the international Tango Festival at Abbrazzos in Singapore. For a recent concert, we added Jazz Saxophonist Daniel Shout and Melanie Scholtz sang the French version as performed by Piazzolla’s collaborator Milva.

String Quartets and Symphony Orchestras have all performed this work

Even Techno-inspired version exist of what is, after Adios Nonino, Piazzolla’s most recorded and re-invented work.

And now I will perform in it’s simplest incarnation – a piano and a melody instrument. In this case, the cello.

  • How can one work fit into so many contexts?

  • And why would so many treatments be desirable?

  • And how does one adjust a work to fit these?

The answer to these questions lie of course at the heart of the Tango itself. The real Tango is not worked out by steps, choreographed or learnt by rote. Argentine Tango is improvised, and follows the expression of the music very closely. It is intensely sense-driven. Dancers actually do not make much eye-contact and do not generally talk while dancing. All communication happens through the senses. You feel the weight of your partner’s body, and if their weight is on a particular leg, it determines the various options that are open to you. There is a leader and a follower in Tango, but the follower is far from passive and the leader far from dominating. It is a gentle conversation of request and consent, of strict convention infused with a delighted playfulness and desire to experiment. And despite the public display inherent in dancing, the actual experience is deeply internal.

Tango Albert Combrink

Dancing as a mirror of the self

The best dancers do not think about what they look like to others. They are too busy connecting with each other and experiencing the conversation.

Dancing with someone tells you a lot about them. Are they comfortable taking the lead? Do they follow happily without having to insist on their needs being met first? Can they listen with their souls and their bodies at the same time? Or do they get insecure and fall back on rote-learned patterns that keep the status quo safely in the comfort-zone?

As Kapka Kassabova - author of the book Twelve Minutes of Love- A Tango Story” - says so beautifully when asked what about the Tango obsesses her somuch”

“It’s a metaphor for love and hope. And the music is divine – it connects you with the whole of the 20th century, and its melancholy is exquisite. I don’t know any other music that has such perfect balance of the sad and the playful. Just listen to a simple old tango called ‘La melodia del corazon’, or anything by Astor Piazzolla, and you’ll know what I mean. You also become part of a ritualised international subculture and that gives you access to tango clubs around the world where you can have the dance of your life with a complete stranger, to the world’s most romantic music. Tango attracts interesting, complex, often troubled people. The dance itself is very creative and every tango partner you experience is completely different. How can you not get hooked! “

Twelve Minutes of Love

 

Music as a form of Dance

For me as a musician, this experience is exactly the same. This Tango reveals the training and preconceptions and perceptions of the musician performing it. To break away from the notes on the page, to bend the rhythm without fracturing it, to colour a note beyond what is indicated on the score; these things take great skill, but even greater courage. It is not a simple matter of “Classical musicians read the score” and “Jazz musicians can improvise”. Classically trained musicians often feel that their own desire to express something is somehow subservient to that which the composer wishes to express. The answers – we are taught from childhood – are to be found in the notation on the score, and composers spend their lives refining and redefining music notation in order for their musical instructions to be as clear as possible. And in many cases, this is already a good place to start. Simply performing a piece accurately with every single notated nuance, is not only an achievement in itself, but presents the music without any egotistical “interpretation” by the artist. Try that with Piazzolla and you’re dead in the water. The notes are a rough guide. A very precise, rough guide. If you play all the notes, you miss the point. Improvising around such a strict guideline with expansive freedom is an enormous challenge.

Each musician I play with, has their own ideas, their own personality, and bring their own “paintbrush” to the collaborative canvass you are creating together. Exactly like two Tango Dancers. And yes, like lovers.

Tango Heart – the Tantric Journey of Argentine Tango says it beautifully:

“Words may divide but the Tango embrace unites.  So on the dance floor, in the absence of words, I completely offer my heart and spirit to my cherished dance partners.  Although my offering is only on the level of energy and presence with the dance, for me it is so complete and exposed, that I might as well be making love.   It is my conscious choice to open my energy field to this degree and I do so with partners I generally trust. But it’s a vulnerable place to be

Albert Combrink Tango 3

 

Tango as a path to the Divine

Naturally, not many people are open to this level of intimacy. The dance and the Tango and the music can guide them along this path.

A decade of playing this music, studying it, masterclasses with dancers and musicians, listening to the great masters – all of these have given me a certain feeling and freedom with this repertoire. A style which is respectful of the original, but one that acknowledges that interaction and interpretation with the Spirit of the text can override the actual text. This reminds me of people – spiritual leaders and laymen – who obsess about the words in sacred texts, rather than their spiritual meaning. The act of dancing Tango is a meditation on inner quietness, a mediation on making visible certain feelings, and in particular, feelings inspired by the music. In the same way, making the music is a meditation. It is a meditation on creating connection with your musical partner(s), connecting with the world of the  spirit with which the composer was connecting.

This is meditation at a very deep level. Subjugating the ego, quietening the mind and going to world of feeling and emotional response, which you can only get to once the world of technical limitations have been left behind. Through this quietness find connection. Through the waves of stillness, we feel the pulse of the Divine.

Albert Combrink Sea Scape

Watch a Trailer of Marco Bellocchio’s 1984 film Enrico IV below and read more about the film HERE.

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As Time Goes By – from the CD “Night Sessions”: Louise Howlett & Albert Combrink

Still regarded as a truly perfect movie, the 1942 “Casablanca” still wows viewers today. And the main song from the film “As Time Goes By” still elicits a special reaction from our audiences every time we perform it. Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink recorded the song the album “Night Sessions” and remain true to the piano-lounge atmosphere of the original while putting a contemporary spin on it. A truly timeless classic.

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As Time goes by Bogard Bergman
As Time Goes By
as time goes by poster casablanca-humphrey-bogart
astimegoesby
Track 02 'As Time Goes By' (Hupfield) - Demo from the CD 'NIGHT SESSIONS'

Download Free MP3 demo tracks from the album Night Sessions by Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink HERE.

You must remember this
A kiss is just a kiss, a sigh is just a sigh.

Whenever Louise and I perform this song on stage, there is a collective sigh from the audience. Everybody seems to know and love this song. I love this song for its “late-at-night” feel. The space it conjures up for me is somewhere public – a bar or a nightclub – but private, at that moment just before closing time when everyone is finishing their drinks and packing up to go home, and reminisce quietly by themselves. Louise and I try to give it a modern feel and do not try to recreate the sound-world of Casablanca, making our version much more intimate than the large canvas of a movie screen.

Humphrey Bogart & Ingrid Bergman

As Time Goes By runs through the film Casablanca like a leitmotif, as the characters of Rick and Ilsa torment themselves by reminiscing over their star-crossed love by asking the club’s piano player Sam to play this song which they loved when they were together in Paris.

Moonlight and love songs
Never out of date.

“A truly perfect movie, the 1942 Casablanca still wows viewers today, and for good reason. Its unique story of a love triangle set against terribly high stakes in the war against a monster is sophisticated instead of outlandish, intriguing instead of garish. Humphrey Bogart plays the allegedly apolitical club owner in unoccupied French territory that is nevertheless crawling with Nazis; Ingrid Bergman is the lover who mysteriously deserted him in Paris; and Paul Heinreid is her heroic, slightly bewildered husband. Claude Rains, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre, and Conrad Veidt are among what may be the best supporting cast in the history of Hollywood films. This is certainly among the most spirited and ennobling movies ever made.” –Tom Keogh (www.reelclassics.com)

It’s still the same old story
A fight for love and glory

Herman Hupfield (1894-1951) started violin lessons in Germany at the age of 9, fought in World War I and – while more recognised as a composer than a performer – entertained in military camps and hospitals in World War II. He wrote both words and music for As Time Goes By for the 1931 Broadway musical Everybody’s Welcome. The director of Casablanca Max Steiner tried to cut the song from the movie. Firstly, because of a musician’s strike, they were unable to record a new version of it and had to use the original 1931 single, which would have an effect on merchandising. In addition, Steiner wanted to write his own song, which would also give him earnings from royalties. In the end, the song had to stay in, as it was impossible to re-shoot the already-completed crucial scenes with Ingrid Bergman, who had by then cut her hair for another movie! After the film’s release, “As Time Goes By” – already recorded 11 years ealier – stayed on radio’s “Hit Parade” for 21 weeks. Max Steiner, in a 1943 interview, admitted that the song “must have had something to attract so much attention”.

Oh yes, the world will always welcome lovers
As time goes by

Download Free Sheet Music of “As Time Goes By”.

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Stardust – from the CD “Night Sessions” with Louise Howlett (vocals) and Albert Combrink (piano)

Duo Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink’s album “Night Sessions” includes “Stardust”, one of Hoagy Carmichael’s most loved songs. They communicate the timeless and delicate nostalgia of love remembered and lost, making this song one of the highlights of their stage-shows.

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Star Dust
Stardust Crosby
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Stardust Hoagy Carmichael, Mitchell Parish
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Track 03 'Stardust' (Hoagy Carmichael) - Demo from the CD 'NIGHT SESSIONS'

When putting together the tracklist for their album Night Sessions, Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink had no dispute about including the exquisite Stardust, one of Hoagy Carmichael’s most loved songs. This song is often one of the highlights of their stage-shows, as they communicate the  timeless and delicate nostalgia of love remembered and lost.

Listen to more demotracks from their CD Night Sessions HERE.

Carmichael abandoned a lucrative career in law in favour of a lucrative career in music.

Hoagland HowardHoagyCarmichael (1899 – 1981) was an disinterested  law student who supported himself by playing piano with dance bands. He did pass with a law degree from Indiana University, but was too busy as a “gigging muso”  to study for his bar exam, resulting in his being fired from his law firm. The legal fraternity’s loss was the gain of lovers and music lovers across the globe.

Carmichael  seems to have had a special affinity with night themes in his songs. He is known for nocturnal gems such as In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening and In the Still of the Night. Georgia on My Mind has “a song of you [that] comes as sweet and clear as moonlight through the pines.” In The Nearness of You, “It’s not the pale moon that delights me, that thrills me or delights me; Oh no, it’s just the nearness of you.”

A delightfully romantic tale has resulted in a creation myth that is so exquisitely sweet, one almost wishes it were true. Biographer Will Freedman describes Hoagy on a nostalgic visit to Indiana University. As he walks down the moonlit lover’s lane, or “spooning wall” as it was called, he recalls an old school romance, and it instantly inspires the tune. Then our hero dashes across campus in search of a piano, and finds one in the campus coffee shop – the “Book Nook”. Here he works out the melody until an old classmate remarks that it reminds him “of the dust from the stars drifting down through a summer night.” Hence, the original title, “Star Dust”.

Richard Sudhalter’s biography Stardust Melody paints a less poetic but perhaps more accurate picture. It seems that Carmichael had fragments of a melody in his head, which he took to a jam session with some fellow musicians, who included cornetist Charles “Bud” Dent, who added his own shreds of melody. Out of this jam-session the song started to take shape. Perhaps Hoagy created the “creation myth” himself to boost the song’s romantic appeal with audiences. He needn’t have worried. The exquisite song has remained a firm favourite since its composition over 80 years ago.

Bing Crosby's 1931 Pop version was an instant hit

The all-important lyrics were similarly created in collaboration. Charmichael was not convinced that it even needed to be a song and argued for it to remain an instrumental number. However, the Mitchell Parish text became a part of world music history when recorded in 1931 by both Bing Crosby and Louis Armstrong. It became an instant hit in both the pop and jazz genres.

Louis Armstrong: A unique Jazz voice

It is fascinating that just two years after its birth, the song had already received such divergent musical treatments, and both of these had won a very large audience. One of the big thrills of hearing this song – almost a century old – is in the revising and musical rethinking of the material.

Louise and Albert take a very dreamy approach to this number, to create an atmosphere of space around the music. Not simply looking up in the sky and seeing the moon and the stars, but that special place of knowing that – once upon a time – you truly did love.

Stardust (Carmichael & Parish) – Download Free Sheet Music:

Copyright reserved by Musi©opy. Offered by Wikifonia.org. Muisc engraving by Lilypond

Some useful links:

Read an interview by Jerry Jass Musician with Carmichael’s biographer Richard Sudhalter HERE.

Listen to Bing Crosby’s original recording HERE.

Listen to Louis Armstrong’s original recording HERE.

I found the Blog SONGBOOK most useful in compiling this article. Visit the American Songbook Blogpage HERE.

Read more about this song and discover a catalogue of over 918 different recordings of this song at Paul Morissette’s Site devoted to Stardust.

To view a video of Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink performing Carmichael’s classic Stardust, Click HERE

Photos of Louise & Albert: Dirk Visser

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Old Devil Moon – Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink present “Night Sessions”

Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink give this Broadway hit a complete make-over on their new CD Night Sessions. The intimacy of voice and piano allows a tender conversation to develop, reflecting the light-headedness of falling head-over heels in love.

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Old Devil Moon FinianPlaybill
Old Devil Moon Burton Lane, E. Y. Harburg
Track 01 'Old Devil Moon' (Harburg) - Demo from the CD 'NIGHT SESSIONS'

“That Old Devil Moon, deep in your eyes, blinds me with love”

Louise Howlett & Albert Combrink

Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink give this Broadway hit a complete make-over on their new CD Night Sessions. The intimacy of voice and piano allows a tender conversation to develop, reflecting the light-headedness of falling head-over heels in love.

Listen to more tracks from the CD Night Sessions HERE

Composed for the 1947 Broadway musical Finian’s Rainbow by Grammy Award winner, Burton Lane (1912-1997), Old Devil Moon has remained popular with audiences for over six decades. The song has also far outlived the stage-show as well as the 1968 film version by a young Francis Ford Coppola. Filled with gold digging rakes and leprechauns the film provides more quality music than story, and this song is the gem of the show’s playlist. Credited with discovering an 11-year-old Frances Gumm – who later metamorphosed into Judy Garland – Lane’s compositions include How are things in Glocca Mora and On a Clear Day.

Edgar Yipsel Harburg (1896-1981) wrote the lyrics that describe so delightfully the thrill of first love. Knows as Yip, he is famous for writing lyrics to some of the most-loved standards, including April in Paris and It’s Only a Paper Moon. The Wizard of Oz – with its famous Somewhere Over the Rainbow brought him lasting financial success as well as an Oscar. Suspected of involvement with the American Communist Party, he was blacklisted by Hollywood bosses, and his film-writing career came to an abrupt end. He then transferred his energies to Broadway until his death in a car accident on Hollywood’s Sunset Boulevard.

Listen to demo tracks from the album Night Sessions by Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink HERE.

You can watch Petula Clark and Jo Stafford singing this song in its original context in a filmed version of Finian’s Rainbow HERE.

You can read more about the musical Finigan’s Wake and its film version in an article by Al Barger HERE.

Buy the Sheet Music for Old Devil Moon from www.musicnotes.com. or Download Free Sheet Music for Old Devil Moon (

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Offered by Wikifonia.org)




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Night Sessions – The Story

“Night Sessions”, the new CD by Louise Howlett and Albert Combrink, follows the shape of many of their successful stage shows. Songs inspired by and set in the night are woven into a subtle “story” that take the listener on a journey through the lows and highs of love. Classic standards are presented in a new context, making the album an interesting narrative disc, as well as a special listening experience.

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Listen to tracks from this CD HERE.

Life and love: finding it, negotiating its pitfalls, tasting its highs and its lows… Is that not the ultimate human condition? Through the night we seek solace, find answers and are guided by the moon towards a new dawn filled with hope.

The moon… O yes, it’s all the moon’s fault – that Old Devil Moon (EY Harburg).

But then, how bad can it be? A sigh is just a sigh, and a kiss? Oh, a kiss is never just a kiss – it’s a fundamental thing, As Time Goes By (Herman Hupfeld).

Remembering those kisses, that wonderful feeling under the stars, can be as painful as it is beautiful. Because sometimes the memory of love is as real and intangible as Stardust (Hoagy Carmichael).

Life is generous. The possibility of love is always there, you just need a bit of faith in the Blue Moon (Rodgers and Hart).

And isn’t it a wonderful feeling? The fluttering heart, the furtively exchanged glances and that moment when you catch them smiling at you and you can’t help but smile back? Don’t you just feel like you’re walking on air? And you think, “Someone should just Fly Me To The Moon” (Bart Howard).

But what goes up, sometimes must come down. Losing that one you love, under any circumstances, is rarely easy. You try to hold on, you look to the moon to keep youtogether. Especially ‘Round Midnight (Thelonius Monk).

But sometimes you find yourself in the dark. How does one get through those times? Chocolate? Red Wine? Something stronger? Cigarettes and regrets? Or just lots of Black Coffee (Burke / Webster).

And the in early hours of the morning, you may face the reality, too late, that youalso made mistakes. So much irony, it’s a joke – just Send In The Clowns (Stephen Sondheim).

There is something very peaceful about those special moments just before dawn.When you find yourself at a new beginning, and there’s hope for the new day. On the horizon you see a glow, a glimmer of hope and you know that Someday My Prince Will Come (Morey / Churchill).

And you think about that special person Night and Day (Cole Porter).

The moon, of course, sees everything. And has seen it all before – all you can do is ask her to look out for love and bring it to you with your Song To The Moon (Dvorak / Kvapil – Translation: Rodney Blume).

Some of us are hopeless romantics. And how wonderful that we are! The world needs optimists, visionaries – in short, dreamers. We believe there’s something special at the end of the rainbow, and that there is true love out there for each and every one of us. Us dreamers, we’re connected you know. Think of it as a Rainbow Connection (Williams / Ascher).

The Rainbow brings a spectrum of colour into our vision, and colours everything we see with a rose tint. Find the beauty and enjoy it while it lasts, because everything has a time to blossom, and a time to fade. Love and life, is as fleeting as a flower. So drink a toast to La Vie En Rose (Edith Piaf).

Lover or no lover, life is for living. It’s time to get out and have fun, forget our troubles and cares. Maybe I see you there – Downtown (Tony Hatch).

So go check out that ol’ Devil moon and who knows, love may be just around the corner. Maybe even Tonight (Bernstein / Sondheim).

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