Creating and re-creating tangos

Artistic processes and innovations in music by Pugliese, Salgán, Piazzolla and Beytelmann

Barbara Varassi Pega
Supervising team:
Joep Bor (promotor), prof. Frans de Ruiter (promotor), Edgardo Rodriguez (promotor), Gustavo Beytelman (co-promotor)
Musician type:
beytelmann, creation, innovations, piano, piazzolla, pugliese, salgán, tango
ancient music (before 13th century), 13th century music



Barbara Varassi Pega digs into the constituent elements of River Plate tango in order to decode how specific musical materials were organized and combined by four outstanding musicians: Osvaldo Pugliese, Horacio Salgán, Astor Piazzolla and Gustavo Beytelmann. 

For this purpose, she has analysed a select number of representative pieces through a study of their scores and recordings. This led to the definition of certain artistic processes and innovations within the genre, theoretical foundations for such processes, and, in all, a deeper understanding of the art of creating tango music, in addition to an overall, chronological view of its development and techniques. The articulation of this (partly) embodied knowledge has resulted in an original contribution to the field, providing new insights with which both Barbara herself and the greater artistic community can enrich their skills in arranging, composing and performing tango music.

The formulation of hypothesis and conclusions, and the translation of the findings into her own production through empiric methods and experimentation were executed alongside the analytical part of the work. The continuous exchange between the practical and theoretical aspects of this research project was fundamental, always strengthening and feeding back each other.

Related events

December 11, 2014 (16h15)

Barbara Varassi Pega's PhD defense

Barbara Varassi Pega publicly defended her PhD dissertation Creating and Re-creating Tangos: Artistic Processes and Innovations in Music by Pugliese, Salgán, Piazzolla and Beytelmann on Thursday December 11, 2014 at Leiden University. 

December 9 and 10th 2014 (20h00, 14h30)

Barbara Varassi Pega's PhD concert and lecture

A concert was held on Tuesday December 9th, at 20h00 at the World Music and Dance Centre, Pieter de Hoochweg 125, Rotterdam. 

On Wednesday December 10th, out of the unique opportunity of gathering a team of international researchers and experts who are members of the jury of Barbara Varassi Pega’s PhD dissertation, a symposium on (artistic) research, (world) music and (tango) creation will be held, from 14h30 until 18h00, at Codarts Theaterzaal, Kruisplein 26, 3012 CC Rotterdam.