Gert’s imagination was fired by hearing on the radio that the legendary tango composer Astor Piazzola would have liked to become a boxer, in spite of his limp, but couldn’t compete with his childhood friends Rocky Graziano and Jake La Motta. Growing up in the mean streets of Greenwich Village in the 20’s he learned to defend himself against the local gangsters. At the same time, he was listening to jazz and classical music, which became part of the ‘nuevo tango’ he later invented, in the face of much criticism from followers of the classic tradition of tango music.
Astor, known locally as Da Pizza, is wandering home early in the morning, breaking sometimes into a pasa doble and then into a bout of shadow boxing, when out from a doorway steps Slugsy ‘The Ear’ O’Halloran. He is carrying a rolled-up music score with which he shoves Astor in the chest, sending him reeling against a lamp post.
Slugsy: Hey, Asshola, you messin wit da Tradition?
Astor springs into a defensive posture, his hands up by his face.
Slugsy (unrolling the score): What’s wit dis shit? (hums a few bars mockingly)
Astor drops his hands and laughs mockingly: You never heard of a passacaglia?
Slugsy: Sure I have.
He drops the score and they begin to dance around each other, feinting.
Slugsy: A passacaglia, dogface, is a circulating bass line and harmonic sequence much used in baroque music.
Astor: You ain’t as dumb as you look.
They begin to punch each other seriously. Astor, bamboozling Slugsy by the use of cunning dance steps, knocks him down and stands over him brandishing the score.
Slugsy (cringing and covering his face): I don’t want no trouble, Pizza. But I’m tellin ya, da outfit ain’t happy…
And it goes on however you want it to.