Giovanni Caccamo opens the “Baroque in All Senses” festival

Wednesday, Sept. 6 OPEN SESAME – Words of change: Every beauty, Madonna

8 p.m. Gonfalone Quarry – admission allowed from 7:30 p.m.

Love declined, a tribute to woman, holy and female, between the sacred and the profane, in an articulate program that will feature Giovanni Caccamo as guest speaker. The singer-songwriter, considered the artistic heir of Maestro Franco Battiato, will talk with Marco Brugaletta about the book “Manifesto of Change. Word to the Youth.” The book, published by Treccani, is an initiative of Giovanni Caccamo in which Marco Brugaletta also participated with a paper. Released with the re-pack of the album “Word” was delivered to the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella and Pope Francis.

This will be followed by a concert of polyphonic music performed by Ensemble Extravocalia on music by Palestrina, de Victoria, Lasso, Arbeau, Donato, Verdelot, among others. The presence of Extravocalia and Giovanni Caccamo, who will perform some songs in an unusual and evocative collaboration, will be an opportunity to bring together different musical genres, albeit with the common thread of Baroque music.


The value of small things, care for the environment, acceptance of passing time, life, and change Caccamo invites reflection on. And then a sequence of songs that in revolutionary, passionate, inexplicable but also boorish love have their root.

There is purity in theAlma Redemptoris Mater, the Virgin Mary woman who represents revolutionary change “you who astonished nature, generating the Creator.” wrote in the 11th century the German monk Hermann of Reichenau in the text set to music by Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, an author so dear to several pontiffs, called ‘Musicae princeps’, and under this title buried in St. Peter’s Basilica.

There is also the reference to the beautiful woman who holds a man’s life in her hand, in Thoinot Arbeau’s pavane (Belle qui tiens ma vie) and who reluctantly does not give in to love.

“Bonjour mon coeur,” writes Orlando di Lasso, good morning my heart, addressed to his beloved whom he fills with amorous nicknames that in another piece by the same composer, turn instead into the rough language of a soldier ready to win his beauty not with sweet words, but who admitting his ignorance, drunk on wine, promises capons and woodcocks as gifts.

Madrigals, villanelles, frottole, gagliarde, and villotte are the musical genres through which the authors decanted their love for “Madonna” in an adoring but also irreverent manner. And there is also an enchantment within the enchantment in Verdelot’s composition: the score is depicted in a self-portrait of Marietta Robusti, Tintoretto’s beloved daughter, a painter and musician herself.

At the end of the evening, a dinner-tasting of local delicacies is planned at 9 p.m.: various samples of local products and innovative recipes inspired by Baroque. Wines and beers from some of the most emblazoned labels in the province of Ragusa complete the tasting.


Giovanni Caccamo is a singer-songwriter born in Modica in 1990. A multifaceted artist, he has also proven his sophistication in writing. After appearances on Rai Gulp and X Factor, Giovanni Caccamo’s art has been appreciated and enhanced by Maestro Franco Battiato, whose musical heir he is considered. Winner of the 2015 Sanremo Festival among the new proposals, third place the following year among the ‘bigs,’ in 2017 Caccamo was named ‘Unesco Youth Ambassador.

In 2021, “Parola,” the fourth unreleased album experience that can be considered another step toward a ‘global’ form of communication, was released: the project focuses on the importance of words, of intergenerational dialogue between souls and voices, acoustic sounds and electronics. And it is with this in mind that the project features Willem Dafoe, Patti Smith, Jesse Paris Smith, Liliana Segre, Aleida Guevara, Michele Placido, Beppe Fiorello and an archival recording by Andrea Camilleri. It is from 2022 the “Word to the Youth” project, in which university students and exponents of the arts, science and sports participate in gathering ideas for the drafting of the ‘Manifesto on Change’ delivered to the President of the Republic and the Pontiff.

Giovanni Caccamo is returning from the Venice Film Festival where he presented the national premiere at the ‘Giornate degli autori’, the docufilm ‘Parola ai giovani’ directed by Angelo Bozzolini and produced by Aut Aut, and which will air on Sky Arte in the fall.

The Ensemble Extravocalia – Carla Ferrari, soprano; Isabella Candeloro, mezzo-soprano; Leonardo Malara, tenor; Marzio Montebello, bass – was founded with the intention of spreading ancient and Baroque vocal music, performed both a cappella and accompanied by instruments, according to careful philological research. The repertoire in particular is the madrigal and sacred repertoire in use at the time at papal basilicas and chapels. Its members are, in fact, specialists in this repertoire; they are, or have long been, members of the choirs of the Vatican Chapels and of institutions such as the Pontifical Institute of Sacred Music. Ensembe Extravocalia brings together professionals from a variety of artistic backgrounds who flexibly alternate between performances-even with the addition of ancient instruments-and who routinely perform their professional activities, also in a solo capacity, at important festivals and music festivals both in Italy and abroad.

September 6, 2023

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