I Giullari Di Piazza's
LA CANTATA DEI PASTORI
(The Shepherd's Cantata)
Celebrate the Holidays in Southern Italian Style with I Giullari Di Piazza's Commedia Christmas Show, La Cantata Dei Pastori. We are proud to announce that our Neapolitan Christmas Concert is now available for touring in colleges and Schools! Our Italian Folk Music & Theatre Company is celebrating our 35th anniversary and is happy to revive a concert version
Of "LA CANTATA DEI PASTORI"
A Neapolitan Renaissance Christmas concert
Featuring: La Befana (the Italian Christmas Witch), the Arc Angel Gabriel, and Pulcinella from the Italian Commedia Dell’Arte
La Cantata dei Pastori Pulcinella / Razzullo
Based on a renaissance Play by Andrea Perrucci . This musical version has been adapted and directed by Alessandra Belloni and enacted by masked commedia dell'arte characters, puppets, devils, and the Archangel Gabriel on stilts. Narrated in English by La Befana - Good Witch of Christmas
~Jon Pareles The New York Times
The music, directed by John La Barbera, is folkish, aiming for vitality above precision and often achieving both. The adaptation, by the troupe's director, Alessandra Belloni, is geared for action rather than quiet piety; in a climactic battle, Miss Belloni as Maria beat a large drum and sang out while the Angel Gabriel took on the dragon. Giuseppe de Falco as Razzullo (and Vincenzo Corrao as the birdlike Sarchiapone) shared slapstick duties.
~Alex Ross, the New York Times: "A musical play presented by the traditional Italian group I Giullari di Piazza (is) a rarity among Christmas programs; it somehow manages to be both riotously entertaining and curiously haunting, even profound......a vibrant and uproarious performance."
FEATURING THE NEAPOLITAN SINGER /ACTOR GIUSEPPE DE FALCO IN THE ROLE OF RAZZULLO the Pulcinella character that leads the story with
ALESSANDRA BELLONI in the role of Mary
MARK MINDEK as the Angel Gabriel on stilts, MAX MCGUIRE as LA BEFANA,
FRANCESCA SILVANO - dancer
WILSON MONTUORI guitar, and MARA GERETY –in the role of the devil, violin
I GIULLARI DI PIAZZA, renowned 35-year old Southern Italian music/theater/dance company, is proud to offer a beautiful concert version of LA CANTATA DEI PASTORI for your Italian Community.
La Cantata Dei Pastori Befana / Marenaresca / Tempest
Join La Befana, the Good Witch of Christmas, Mary and Joseph, the Archangel Gabriel, Devils, Demons, and the commedia dell'arte characters who enact this beloved story of the journey of Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem, and the triumph of good over evil.
The music - tarantellas, villanellas and pastorales - comes from traditional sources, with original music by John La Barbera. Adaptation and direction are by Alessandra Belloni. Songs are sung in Italian; costuming and music instrumentation is traditional Southern Italian; narration is in English. The play ends with a singing by the Company of the oldest known Neapolitan Christmas song.
The play is set during Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem, during which the Devil has dispatched demons to stop the birth of Jesus. Along the way, the holy couple's escapades are entwined with the hapless commedia dell'arte character called Razzullo, a comic mischievous Neapolitan scribe who is always hungry and looking for something to eat. The demons, in the meanwhile, conjure up tempests, dragons, and do all they can to stop the birth, but all are under the protection of the Archangel Gabriel (played here, in traditional style, by Mark Mindek, well known stilt dancer who has appeared in Metropolitan Opera productions, Disney Films and special events around the world.). The holy couple experiences funny, outrageous, and dangerous adventures before they finally reach Bethlehem and Good triumphs over Evil!
"La Cantata dei Pastori" is still performed annual during the Christmas season in the environs of Naples. Written by Andrea Perrucci during the height of commedia dell'arte popularity in Italy, it combines commedia characteristics with those of the Italian medieval sacra rappresentazione. These elements are fused in settings which borrow from a third genre, the Italian pastoral drama
La Cantata Dei Pastori Mattacino
" In this age of high tech special effects and over the top theatrics it was refreshing to see a performance reminiscent of traditional Opera Buffa. One gets the feeling of witnessing a show performed the same way it has been for centuries in Campania. The performers' passion and talent, not technology, breathe life into the story to create a wonderful illusion."
Magna Greece (Journal for people of Southern-Italian descent)
La Cantata dei Pastori Cuncti Simus