NYU Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò Presents: The Black Madonna and the Taranta: Healing Music from Southern Italy
CASA ITALIANA ZERILLI MARIMO - Prof. Stefano Albertini, Director- Invites you to a special series of workshops and lectures (90 minutes each): February 9,11 & 16 – 5:00pm to 6:30pm – free – link on zoom will be available from NYU CASA ITALIANA upon registration.
THE BLACK MADONNA & THE TARANTA: HEALING MUSIC FROM SOUTHERN ITALY with I GIULLARI DI PIAZZA featuring:
INTERNATIONALLY RENOWNED SINGER, PERCUSSIONIST, TEACHER ALESSANDRA BELLONI! AUTHOR OF THE BOOK 'HEALING JOURNEYS WITH THE BLACK MADONNA, published by Inner Traditions - Bear & Co.
And featuring: Giullari di Piazza music director/co-founder JOHN LA BARBERA, composer & guitarist JOE DENINZON violin & vocals Dancer FRANCESCA SILVANO GUEST SPEAKERS FROM ITALY: Armando Mei, Egyptologist and writer and Angelo Tonelli, philosopher, writer, theater director and Classicist
TUESDAY FEBRUARY 9 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm PART 1: Alessandra will open with a short presentation about myths & legends in the South of Italy and the ancient sacred sites of the Black Madonna. Alessandra will speak about her personal healing journey with the Black Madonna, and her unique research that led her to write her book, Healing Journeys with the Black Madonna.
GUEST SPEAKER: Armando Mei (Egyptologist, writer and award winning archeologist, to be featured in the USA on the TV Show Open Mind on March 18, 2021) will speak about Ancient Egypt and the Myth of Isis, how devotion to Isis has continued and transformed over the years and evolved into the worship and devotion for the Black Madonna.
PART TWO: 1) Alessandra & John will teach the chants in honor of the Madonna of Montevergine (Avellino) and La Madonna della Libera (Moiano Benevento). These ancient healing chants use the Lydian Scale or Neapolitan Scale use to invoke healing and calm the mind
2) Alessandra & Francesca Silvano will lead a ceremonial workshop teaching the traditional sacred dances in honor of the Black Madonna: The powerful TAMMURRIATA from the region of Campania, which dates back to the rites of the Mother Earth Goddess Cybele, and the Egyptian Goddess Isis, now worshiped as the Black Madonna all over the South of Italy.
2ND CLASS: THURSDAY FEBRUARY 11- 5:00PM TO 6:30PM Experience the healing power of the ancient Tarantella ! Part 1 Alessandra will introduce the special guest speaker: ● Angelo Tonelli, Italian writer, philosopher, scholar of ancient Greek myths , and theatre director, originally from Lerici, (Liguria) and specialized in the ritual aspect of ancient Greek mythology. He has translated all the major Greek tragedies into Italian, and he will speak about his research into the myths of the Great Mother, Demeter, and the Eleusinian mysteries; Dionysus as God who dies and is reborn; the Bacchae and the relation of their ecstatic rites of to the ancient healing ritual of the tarantella and also in relation to the devotion and tradition of the Black Madonna in Southern Italy.
3) After a brief explanation and demonstration, Alessandra, Joe and John will play the Medieval Chant in Honor of the Black Madonna used to send way the fear of death by the plague: CUNCTI SIMUS CONCANENTES. Participants will also learn to sing this powerful prayer.
PART 2 : The healing rhythm of San Rocco & the Black Madonna from Calabria, known as OUR LADY OF THE POOR – CUNCTI SIMUS CONCANENTES – FOLLOWED BY TARANTELLA INFUOCATA – This rhythm is used to accompany a trance dance originating in Calabria during the Middle Ages, which evokes the elegant and meditative movements of the Whirling Dervish ceremonies of the Sufis. Both rhythm and dance were used during the time of the Black Death, to heal people and as a release from overpowering fears of death by contagious disease. This is very important and similar to the situation today with the outbreak of the CORONAVIRUS. Will end with a special healing chant in the Lydian Mode as meditation.
SESSION 3 TUESDAY FEBRUARY 16 – 5:00PM Experience the healing power of the authentic PIZZICA TARANTATA !
LET’S GET THE POISON OUT OF OUR BODIES & BREAK THE IMAGINARY WEB! Alessandra Belloni & John La Barbera will start with a short lecture about the tradition of the Tarantella from pre-christian times, the Myth of Arachne, and the true origins of the tarantella as music and dance therapy.
Participants will learn the traditional ancient healing trance dance of the tarantella, known as PIZZICA TARANTATA - used to cure the mythical bite of the tarantula, in use for centuries throughout the Mediterranean. We’ll create a community healing ritual as our bodies move in ways that help us to open the energy points and stay grounded. These rhythms and movements represent an unbroken chain of inspiration and expression of sound and dance, dating back to the rites the God Dionysus and the women known as Baccanti (Bacchae) , and kept alive into the present. The presentation features: Alessandra and John will teach the healing chant from Naples JESCE SOLE, using the Lydian Mode. Francesca will lead the DANCE OF THE PIZZICA DE CORE as Alessandra, John La Barbera and JOE DENINZON will play the music: voice, percussion, guitar an violin.
PIZZICARELLA – social dance - FRANCESCA will steps of this energetic dance done in a circle. FIMMENE FIMMEN/THE PIZZICA TARANTATA or Spider Dance– This powerful and dynamic ritual dance originated in Puglia as a cure for the mythical bite of the Tarantula, a condition causing a mental disease called tarantismo, a form of depression, which afflicted mainly women (tarantate) often due to abuse. The wild rhythm of the Pizzica, played on medium size tambourines and accompanied by dance was performed as an exorcism ritual which produced a trance-like state beneficial for the healing of many disorders and imbalances. As part of a re-enactment of this ritual, Francesca Silvano, accompanied by John La Barbera, Joe Deninzon, and Alessandra Belloni will lead the participants in a circle dance accompanied by tambourine and guitar and accordion, playing the 6/8 rhythm and singing. During the ritual each student will learn the steps of the Pizzica, which means “ bite,” building up to a culmination where each student will then dance in a circle and lay down (possibly upon a white sheet) , using a red ribbons, and emulate "Spider" like movements on the ground, releasing stress and blockages as well as opening the heart and throat chakras. The dance comes to completion as each participant dances their way out of an imaginary “Spider Web", achieve inner balance and relief of stress while restoring spiritual and physical energy is a major theme of this work.
REQUIREMENTS: Participants in the dance workshops should be barefoot, or wear comfortable shoes, and if possible everyone should wear white and red clothes, also use red ribbons. The sessions are held in a way that gives students the feeling of being part of the "ritual." Important : access to good internet