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Le ciaramelle

Text: Giovanni Pascoli (1855-1912)

Pastorale for Unaccompanied SATB Chorus

Duration: 4 mins approx.



Composer's Note

Le ciaramelle (The bagpipes) sets part of a poem of the same name by Giovanni Pascoli (1855-1912). Pascoli’s poem recounts his impressions of hearing Sicilian shepherds playing bagpipes at Christmastime: a centuries-old, Southern Italian tradition, which also inspired the ‘Pifa’ of Handel’s Messiah. My carol draws upon my own experiences in Sicily, deriving its harmony from recordings of church bells that I made in Palermo, and in the seaside town of Terrasini, on and around Christmas Day in 2019.

Le ciaramelle was commissioned by the Chorus of Opera North and premiered on 14th December 2023 in Dewsbury Town Hall, conducted by Garry Walker.

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