A Tango in Edinburgh by Cynthia Stillman Gerdes

Born in Buenos Aires and quickly adopted around the world, the tango was once described as “a vertical expression of a horizontal desire.”  Playing it should feel like an improvisation--just the same way that the Argentinian tango is danced.  It's the pianist and the piano and the interplay of notes--sensuous, slinky, unapologetic. Despite the meticulously detailed score, A Tango in Edinburgh needs to be played from the senses, not the brain; instinct, not reason.

Composer  and pianist Cynthia Stillman Gerdes is an experienced tango dancer.  It shows in the lines of this piece.  Propelled by an active bass, the right hand becomes the showy, flamboyant follower—much like the relationship between the male and female dancers.  This tango is a musical memory of a dance she shared with a stranger in Edinburgh and Cynthia’s description of that night is so evocative that I needed to share it, in her own words: 

That May night in Edinburgh, Scotland the music was more sensual, complex and subtle compared to our usual tango scene. Being a composer/musician I loved it.

We were surprised how the dancers warmly welcomed us as distant American “cousins”. The whole evening was fun; however, there was one especially unforgettable, juicy, smooth tanda…  

"A Tango In Edinburgh" is an honoring of those special, fleeting connections with a stranger. Romantic? Well...maybe. My “traveling partner” didn’t seem to mind. He found his own tango pleasures that evening.

To learn more about Cynthia Stillman Gerdes and to purchase a copy: http://www.cynthiastillmangerdes.com


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