Gli Arbëreshë di Sicilia. Identità storica e pratiche musicali paraliturgiche

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As part of the musical tradition of the Albanians of Sicily, in addition to the Byzantine liturgical chants (a field of studies on which the author has produced numerous researches and numerous publications in recent decades), also the devotional and paraliturgical musical repertoires represent an heritage and of significant interest.In the villages of the Eparchy of Piana degli Albanesi, in fact, in correspondence with the various festive dates of the year, innumerable devotional and paraliturgical celebrations (novenas, rosaries, triduums, “months”) are held, in which signs of the oriental tradition are mixed with practices of western provenance, texts in Arbëresh or Sicilian dialect alternate with compositions in Greek or in Latin, melodies of ancient origin are interwoved with songs of more recent origin.These celebration’s forms, although extraneous to the Greek-Byzantine rituality, have progressively been introduced in past centuries due to the influence of the folk Sicilian cultural adstrate. In many cases the lyrics of many paraliturgical chants are certainly translations into Albanian of pre-existing traditional songs in Sicilian dialect, “imported” from the adjacent “Latin” villages.Overall, this repertoire highlights the conservative character of the culture of the Arbëreshe minority, since if very often in almost all other areas of Sicily these songs have now fallen into oblivion, in the Sicilian-Albanian villages, on the contrary, they continue to be handed down in the Arbëreshe version.In this broad and multifaceted framework, the musical repertoires connected with Novenas and Rosaries deserve particular attention.In the rich and varied context of the paraliturgical musical repertoires of the Arbëreshë of Sicily, the “Song of the Resurrection” of Lazarus occupies a place in itself and of absolute importance for various reasons.Among these reasons, at least two should be highlighted above all. The first reason is that it is the devotional musical folk tradition that more than all the others preserves the traits of an oriental origin, particularly in connection with the Byzantine-Orthodox world, especially in reference to the celebratory context - both liturgical and folkloric - in which the chant is performed (a sung ritual begging that takes place in the evening and the night of the so-called “Friday of Lazarus”, i.e. the Friday preceding Palm Sunday).The second reason is that it is a tradition practiced in all five villages of the Eparchy (each village, however, has its own textual-musical variant), moreover preserved today still in an extraordinarily vital and participatory way.
Lingua originaleItalian
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteIl rito musicale del Lazzaro nelle comunità arbëreshe di Sicilia
Numero di pagine20
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2016

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