Rhythms, Songs and Dances From Southern Italy

A Hands-On Tambourine Workshop
Alessandra Belloni

The purpose of this workshop is to introduce general audiences to a rich tambourine and folk dance culture that is still practiced in Southern Italy today. The workshop focuses on the origins of the Tarantella as an ecstatic dance in honor of Dionysus, god of ecstasy and wine, still celebrated all throughout Italy during Carnival.

During the tambourine workshop, the participants will learn:

* The basic technique of holding the drum, with emphasis on arm movement, wrist and elbow technique, which requires strength to create the bouncing sound of the triplets.
* Hand technique with the palm and the fingertips in both a basic and accented fast 6/8 rhythm.
* Tammorriata: a 4/4 rhythm played on the large drum called the Tammorra, originally from Naples with a strong African influence in the rhythm.
* Tarantella alla Montemaranese: a carnival dance from Montemarano (Naples) played on the smaller tambourines with a very unusual syncopation on the 6/8. This rite of Carnival dates back to the Roman celebrations in honor of Bacchus, the god of wine.

Featured Songs:

* Sicilian Fisherman chant LEVA LEVA, done by fishermen when fishing for tuna and accompanied by tambourines.
* The ancient Neapolitan chant JESCE SOLE, sung in order to bring forth the healing energy of the sun.

About Alessandra Belloni:

Alessandra Belloni is a singer, percussionist, dancer and actress who stands as one of the most important voices of traditional southern Italian music and dance today. She is an artist in residence at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in NYC and Artistic Director/Founder of I Giullari di Piazza (Players of the Square). Acclaimed for her mastery of musical styles at home and abroad, she has her own signature series of Italian tambourines designed with the largest percussion manufacturer in the wo rld, REMO. Ms. Belloni was born in Rome, Italy and is committed to preserving the strong and rich traditions of her culture. She has performed extensively with master drummer Glen Velez and was invited by Nana Vasconcellos and Gilberto Gil to perform in PERC PAN '98 in Bahia, Brazil. Alessandra was also selected as one of three runners-up to Arthur Hull in DRUM! magazine's “New Age/Worldbeat Percussionist” category in their 1998 awards. She was featured in Modern Drummer magazine and has written articles for Percussive Notes.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012 – 6:30pm – 10:00pm
Italian American Museum
155 Mulberry Street
New York, NY 10013
Suggested donation of $50

To reserve a place for this workshop please call the
Italian American Museum at (212) 965-9000
email: ItalianAmericanMuseum@gmail.com

For information on the Museum's Travel Program, please call (718) 597-1414
or email: JRusso-Winner@ItalianAmericanMuseum.org
The IAM is chartered by the University of the State of New York and has a 501(c)(3) designation from the IRS.

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