The Ill-Advised Tango

Year of composition
Difficult (Grades 7+)
8 minutes
Large mixed ensemble
Instrumental parts
Not available

The version written for (and dedicated to) alto saxophone virtuoso Sundar Viswanathan.

The Speech:

Ladies and Gentlemen ? please strike out where not applicable ? we are indubitably at the point in this evening?s proceedings when matters of high and urgent moral moment are on the agenda. It has come to our attention that some of you are permitting your sons and daughters to indulge, not in minor moral distractions like video games and oral sex, but in dire acts of severe moral turpitude. I mean, ladies and gentleman, and could only mean: the tango. [sinister saxophone underscore begins] This terrible entertainment has brought more souls straight to hellfire than all the wars and fraudulent tax forms combined. How frail a reed is man, my friends. A few seductive chords; a wisp or two of melancholy piping; an invidious rhythm or two, and all inhibition is lost. All sense is fled. All restraint and decency abandoned. Can such things be? If it is not too late already for your children, act at once to suppress this vicious dance. Do your part to send the tango back to the nether regions where it belongs!

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