Global Moves: Learn the Tarantella of Italy w/ Alessandra Belloni


Learn about the ancient roots of the tarantella - a traditional Italian folk dance - and try it for yourself! About this event There are many ways to experience a new culture. You can try the food, read the literature, or listen to the music, just to name a few. But in this new digital series, we want you to get out of your seat and explore the world through movement and dance!

During this monthly, one-hour live experience, guests of all ages are invited to discover the roots of cultural dances from around the globe, learning some steps and uncovering the meaning behind the moves. This month, we’ll be joined by Alessandra Belloni who will be introducing us to the tarantella of Italy. To start, Alessandra will explore the evolution of the tarantella from pre-Christian times to the dance we know today. You’ll learn about the Myth of Aracne and the origins of the tarantella as a form of music and dance therapy that originated in Puglia. Known as pizzica tarantata, the traditional ancient healing trance dance of the tarantella was used for centuries throughout the Mediterranean to cure the mythical bite of the tarantula.

After the presentation, it’s time to dance! Alessandra will pick up her tambourine to accompany dancer Francesca Silvano as you learn the steps of the pizzicarella - an energetic social dance usually performed in a circle. Francesca will also demonstrate the women's work chant ritual, fimmene fimmmene, and the pizzica tarantata - the Spider Dance, a powerful and dynamic ritual dance. For the dance, you are encouraged to be barefoot or in comfortable shoes and to wear white and red, the traditional ceremonial colors of the ancient tarantella.

About Your Host

Alessandra Belloni is the Artistic Director, Founder and Lead Performer of “Giullari Di Piazza”, an Italian Music, Theatre and Dance Ensemble and Artists-in-Residence at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City. She is also the designer of a line of signature series Italian tambourines made by Remo. She is the only woman in the U.S. and in Italy who specializes in traditional Southern Italian folk dances and percussion combined with singing that she learned in Southern Italy.

An award winning tambourine virtuoso, singer, dancer and actress, Ms.Belloni was born in Rome, Italy and is committed to preserving the strong and rich traditions of her culture. Author of the book “Healing Journeys with the Black Madonna" published by Inner Traditions- Bear & Company with a foreword by best-selling author Matthew Fox. Recently appeared with a feature Smithsonian Folk Life Magazine for her work using the tarantella healing tradition with women around the world. For the last nineteen years, she has been holding her special dance and drumming workshop in Tuscany, Rythym is the Cure, with students that come from all over the world. Recipient of the Folk Arts Master Grant from the New York State Council on the Arts 2016 & 2018.


Once registered, you can access the Zoom room for this experience through your confirmation email or Eventbrite account. Atlas Obscura online experiences are recommended for attendees age 13+.

This Online Experience will be recorded. A temporary link to the recording will be provided in a follow-up email to all ticket holders within 72 hours after the event. Access to this recording will be available for seven days.

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