Gente de Tango

Alberto Demaria & Enrique Seone, founders of Orquesta Tipica Gente de Tango

Alberto Demaria & Enrique Seone, founders of Orquesta Tipica Gente de Tango

During 1981, a group of amateur musicians with a common passion for tango began practicing together. They formed to interpret the renowned style of Carlos Di Sarli and became the Orquesta Tipica Gente de Tango. On November 1, 1981, they made their debut on Channel 11 in Buenos Aires. They are the only orchestra in the world performing the repertoire of the Carlos Di Sarli orquesta, thanks to the dedication of Enrique Seone, one of two founding members. Great singers performed with Gente de Tango on special occasions: Jorge Duran, Roberto Florio, Roberto Rufino, Mario Pomar, Horacio Caseras and Amadeo Mandarino.
Enrique Seone was born July 26, 1933, in Buenos Aires and studied bandoneon. He was a professional music arranger since 1953 and perfected his knowledge of harmony with Sebastian Piana and orchestration with Ismael Spitalnik. He played with the orchestras of Roberto Chanel and Moro-Della Rocca (former musicians of Juan D’Arienzo). I once asked Enrique how the scores used by Gente de Tango came into being. He listened to the recordings and notated each individual part. One orchestration took more than 25 hours to transcribe. None of what Di Sarli played on the piano was ever printed. He conducted from the piano and played without a score. He was a genius who had the complete orchestrations in his head and his heart. Gente de Tango has Enrique to thank for painstakingly notating the orchestrations they have used for 27 years.

I received a phone call on Monday from one of the bandoneonists with Gente de Tango informing me that Enrique had died last week. When I met him three years ago, he was dealing with Parkinson’s, but continued to perform with the orchestra for 25 years. A few weeks ago, all the musicians gave Enrique a surprise visit at the hospital when he played his bandoneon for the last time.

I had the pleasure of hearing Gente de Tango for the first time in March 2000 when they performed during CITA. I attended their rehearsals three years ago in Villa Devoto because they had been hired to perform for the Miami tango festival in 2006. I regularly attended their performances in the milongas and got to know the musicians. The orchestra of Carlos Di Sarli is my favorite in the milongas, so it was always a joy to hear the Di Sarli style live. Guillermo Durante directs from the piano just as Carlos Di Sarli did. He masterfully recreates the style of “The Lord of the Tango.” 

The next performance of Gente de Tango will be Thursday, October 30 in Viejo Correo during the Campeonato Intercontinental de Tango.

Gente de Tango rehearsal




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