The Thank You Tango

by Karl Hitzemann

It's tango time again! We've featured a few tangos over the years – "The Turkey Tango" (Vol. 8, No. 2) "The Exercise Tango" (Vol. 15, No. 3), "Character Tango" (Vol. 19, No. 4), – and now we bring you "The Thank You Tango!" This song is designed, as you may have surmised, to thank someone special, or a group of special people, in your school or community. This would also be a great song to kick off a lesson about the history of the tango.

"The Thank You Tango" is patterned after a famous piece called, "Por una Cabeza," which was written in 1935 by Carlos Gardel. Mr. Gardel was a singer, composer, and actor in the 1920s and '30s. He was also a very prominent figure in the history of tango. The chorus of our tune, which begins at measure 20, uses a similar chord progression to "Por una Cabeza." And the second time at measure 20, the solo violin briefly hints at the original melody.

In a performance of this piece, your singers should really ham it up and sing with lots of theatrics and gusto. It will make the person or persons being thanked feel even more special.

While there is a playable piano part provided, the recorded accompaniment, which features piano, guitar, strings, bongos, maracas, and more, will really help set the proper tone. If you have a couple of students or teachers who could dance a simplified version of the tango, that would be even more fun.

Also, If you're interested in tying in a bit of music theory, point out to your singers that the verses are written in a major key (A major) and then the chorus switches to a minor key (A minor).

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.