They say if you get bitten by a tarantula on a summer night then you will start to dance like a crazy, your feet will burn to the ground and yet you will not stop until you…die. Well, this is not a screenplay of a new horror movie, but a folkloristic tale about the birth of one of the most famous popular dances from South Italy, the tarantella.
The term tarantella indicates a very ancient style of dancing and gathers a series of traditional dances belonging to the different regions of South Italy, such as Puglia, Campania, Calabria, and Sicily. Nowadays tarantella and the akin pizzica have become an occasion for gathering and celebrating life in a pure Southern Italy manner, with joy and passion.
So, if you are planning to come to Italy in August, you should really pay a visit to the world-known Notte della Taranta, Italy’s biggest music festival and one of Europe’s most important events dedicated to traditional local culture. The festival takes place in Apulia region, in particular in the geographical area called Salento and its aim is to re-discover and enhance folk music and its fusion with other types of music, from world music to classical one.
La Notte della Taranta is not just music. For the local culture it symbolizes a constant search for that primordial energy that structures things, and that allows us to vibrate in perfect harmony with the surrounding universe. The pizzica has indeed a curative function capable to exorcise the evils of today through its rhythm of the tambourine, a rhythm that is essential to find your inner self.
The festival was born back in 1988 and during the years, it has enjoyed huge growth in size, audience, and international prestige. The festival, which lasts for all the August month, reaches its apex with the Final Concertone of Melpignano (Lecce): a massive concert held by an orchestra of nearly 30 musicians from Salento together with important guests from national and international music scene, directed by the so-called Maestro Concertatore, invited to arrange and interpret classics from the local musical tradition. The Concertone alone attracts about 150.000 people, while tens of thousands follow the final rehearsal the day before. The date set for 2019 edition is the 24th August and it will see the presence of Fabio Mastrangelo as Maestro Concertatore, along with famous guests such as Elisa, Enzo Avitabile, and Salif Keita.
For further information about the calendar of the events and how to join the Notte della Taranta festival, you can visit the official website.
NOTTE DELLA TARANTA
FROM 1st TO 31st AUGUST 2019
SALENTO – APULIA
FINAL CONCERTONE OF MELPIGNANO
24th AUGUST 2019
VIA DAFNI 11 – MELPIGNANO (LECCE)