The Festa del Centro Storico is many things, mostly but not exclusively musical, wrapped up into a 10-day package that can alternately dazzle and exhaust performers and audiences alike. It’s provocative a lot of the time and (alas) too enamored of high-decibel volume much of the time. But it is very seldom, if ever, boring.
Monday night’s installment was a stunning example, brought to us by a foursome of contemporary musicians and visual artists in the Piazza Angelio and a dynamic open-air nightclub combo in Piazza Annunziata. In the peripatetic tradition of what used to be called the Festa delle Piazzette – am I alone in preferring the old name? – the summer evening crowds wandered back and forth between these two acts: art as passeggiata.
Painting, theater, music and architecture collided and collaborated in the Piazza Angelio. The set, if that’s the right term, was an enormous cube, fashioned from wood and translucent plastic sheeting, that dominated Barga’s largest square. Until 10 pm, it posed a silent metaphorical question mark for passersby and a full terrace of Osteria diners. Then, with clockwork precision, the static was suddenly converted to frenzied sound and movement.
Trumpet king/composer Andrea Guzzoletti and keyboard magician Simone Venturi, two of Italy’s outstanding jazz talents, began playing selections from Guzzoletti’s riveting “invisible Cities,” inspired by Italo Calvino’s famous prose poem – article here. Artists Fabrizio Da Prato and Keane, dressed in construction overalls and safety helmets and assisted by a muscle team, lifted the cube and lowered it over the musicans. In effect, they and their instruments were incarcerated in the huge hollow box, the exterior of which Keane and Da Prato set to painting.
Read the full article >> here