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Arts & Life

The magic of tango nuevo group The Oblivion Project is coming to Ann Arbor

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Chuck Anderson
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Courtesy of The Oblivion Project

The Oblivion Project is dedicated to performing the music of Astor Piazzolla, the late Argentine composer who is regarded as a "godfather" of Tango Nuevo.

The group is appearing throughout the Midwest, including a performance at the Kerrytown Concert House in Ann Arbor on March 14, this coming Saturday night.

Cellist, band leader and Ann Arbor native Derek Snyder describes Tango Nuevo, saying, "It expands and goes in a lot more directions than traditional dance tango."

This week marks what would have been Piazzolla's 94th birthday, and Snyder says the band's tour serves as a way to honor him.

Snyder describes one of Piazzolla's most famous pieces, "Libra Tango," as "meant for the performers to feel totally released and free to create."

And vocalist and dancer for The Oblivion Project Migguel Anggelo, originally from Venezuela and now based in Brooklyn, says performing Piazzolla's music is freeing.

"Especially when some people don't speak Spanish, it's kind of magic. They understand, even with the movement that I do, what I'm trying to say or what Piazzolla is trying to say with the song," Anggelo says.

Piazzolla's catalog includes almost 3,000 pieces with varying influences and sounds.

"Piazzolla lived in four different countries and each of these countries you can hear in his music," Snyder says.

The Oblivion Project hopes to learn from his masterful blending of instruments, sounds and inspirations.

Following in Piazzolla's style, Snyder says the band blends instruments along with musicians from different backgrounds and cultures to create new sounds.

Watch a clip of the band perform below:

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