Breakdown Tango (2000)
for clarinet, violin, cello, and piano
Click to buy : Full set: $90.
Commissioned by the Parsons Dance Company, with funding provided by the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust's Live Music for Dance program and the Margaret Fairbank Jory Copying Assistance Program of the American Music Center.
Premiered June 13-18, 2000. The Joyce Theater, New York, NY.
Dedicated to Garrick Zoeter of Antares.
The ballet is called "Promenade."
This work (called "darkly dramatic" by the New York Times, and "an appealing, and at times wonderfully trashy piece" by The Clarinet Magazine), has a virtuostic beginning and ending, with a peculiar tango sandwiched in the middle. It's a bit more jagged than my earlier pieces. The choreography, by Robert Battle (now Artistic Director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater), is really, really fantastically odd.
There is now a commercially-available recording of the work available on the Innova label. Gramophone Magazine described the work by saying, "Certainly one would be hard pressed to find a better piece than John Mackey's Breakdown Tango..."
This work was the source of material for "Redline Tango."