Compositions inspired by Pascoli

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Michael Stimpson

One of Britain's fastest rising composers, Michael Stimpson has been a resident in Barga Vecchia for some time now. The influence of Barga and this area on his work was put in front of the public for the first time in May with four performances of his latest composition "Dall'Alba al Tramonto based on the poems of Giovanni Pascoli. 

Recently barganews has managed to find a recording of part of the Second Movement, Speranze e Memorie (Hopes and Memories) performed by the respected Italian tenor and piano duo Alessandro Maffucci and Roberto Russo

The première was given on Saturday April 21st at Pieve Romanica di San Leolino, Panzano in Chianti, Italy. It received further performances in Italy before the work was toured in the UK. Concerts there included St. James's Piccadilly (London) and a sell-out performance at the Italian Cultural Institute. Plans are in progress for a recording of the work in 2008.

Michael has composed for some of the UK's most distinguished artists in the classical music industry, including the English Chamber Orchestra, Tallis Chamber Choir, David Campbell, Allegri String Quartet, Paul Agnew, Sioned Williams, John Anderson, Dussek Piano Trio, London Festival Orchestra and the English Concert Singers. The capital's foremost venues have hosted performances of his work; the Wigmore Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Cadogan Hall, Purcell Room and St. John's Smith Square and international recognition has prompted performances in the USA, Iran and Italy.

GIOVANNI PASCOLI – 1855-1912, Italian poet. Pascoli's childhood was marked by a series of tragedies: the deaths of his parents and of five of his brothers and sisters. A radical in his student days at the Univ. of Bologna, he was subdued by imprisonment (1879) for his political activities. After completing his studies he taught classics, succeeding Giosuè Carducci as professor of literature at Bologna in 1905. His tender poetry, written in pastoral style, won him international fame; many verses were inspired by memories of his family. Also seeing his mission as the chronicling of Italy's glory, he wrote of historical and patriotic subjects, earning D'Annunzio's epithet "the last son of Vergil." His works include Carmina (in Latin, 1914); the more mystical Myricae (1891-1903); and the patriotic Odi e inni (1906).

Pascoli remains one of Italy's best-loved poets. He was also an essayist of distinction – more on Pascoli here

Movements from the work:
I Alba Festiva (Dawn Festival)
II Speranze e Memorie (Hopes and Memories)
III Scalpitio (Hooves)
IV Il Morticino (The Dead Child)
V Il Rosicchiolo (The Crust of Bread)
VI Patria (Homeland)
VII La Cucitrice (The Seamstress)
VIII Sera Festiva (Evening Festival)

This work was made possible with the help of sponsorship from Huggins and Lewis Foskett Solicitors and Arts and Business. More information and streaming MP3's of some of Michael's compositions can be found on his site

Click on the link below to listen to a small excerpt from the Second Movement, Speranze e Memorie (Hopes and Memories) performed by the respected Italian tenor and piano duo Alessandro Maffucci and Roberto Russo


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