It will be released on November 10 for the publisher Squilibri, the new volume of the AEM – Archives of ethnomusicology. Particular interest to us because it is dedicated to Umbria and the research that has been conducted in this region in the second half of the fifties. The title is Traditional music of Umbria. Recordings of Diego Carpitella and Tullio Seppilli (1956), edited by Pietro G. Arcangeli and Valentino Paparelli.
In the perspective of a search based on scientific methods of ethnomusical data collection, Carpitella – who had already collaborated on the research of Ernesto De Martino in Basilicata and, shortly thereafter, would be part of the team of study on tarantism – covered, along with Seppilli – director of the Institute of ethnology and cultural Anthropology of the University of Perugia – Umbria different areas.
In 1954 the region had already been crossed by Alan Lomax, who recorded in the towns of Gualdo Tadino, Assisi and Norcia. This first collection is called Collection 24/R of Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia (AESC).
The investigations of Carpitella and Seppilli were conducted in two stages. The first in December of 1956 – known as Raccolta 33 (AESC) – and the second in January 1958. The latter, Collection 37 (AESC), affected both the province of Perugia and Terni, leading to the collection of more than ninety documents. The Raccolta 33 is formed of more than one hundred recordings and took place exclusively the province of Perugia.
The volume is introduced by a long note of Tullio Seppilli, in which he reconstruct the most representative stages of those searches and confront three basic themes: the persistence of eighth rhyme improvised poetic form, the discovery of the ritual of the “Sega la vecchia” and the presence of “matter relating to the literary Guerin Meschino and his long stay in the Cave of the Sibyl”, framed in a “cultural horizon still populated by fairies and witches, strange apparitions and scary night meetings”.
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