Vincent Persichetti Music Association’s inaugural event at the
Falconara center was a great success. Although the event coincided
with an Italian holiday, the center on Via del Consorzio was packed
with an impassioned group of friends, musicians and teachers.
evening program began with a brief presentation by President Rosanna
Persichitti. She explained how the association came about, from the
discovery of Vincent Persichetti to the genealogical research done
with skill and patience by Gabriele Serpilli, to the professional
and moral support Caterina and Roberta Serpilli lavished on her to
get the association off the ground.
the President gave thanks to all those that have supported the
association from the very beginning, amongst which she mentioned
Andrew Mast (professor at Lawrence University, Wisconsin, as well as
president of the American association devoted to Persichetti) and
Anthony Piccoli, the primary liaison with the town administration of
Torricella Peligna (the composer’s town of origin).
Professor Marco Salvarani' speech, the President thanked in the name
of the entire Vincent Persichetti Music Association the Vice-mayor
of Falconara, Gilberto Baldassari, and the Torricella Peligna
delegation, formed by
Ficca, Culture and Tourism Councilmember, and Cristian Crivelli,
Vice-president of the "Proloco".
It was an honor to have them present despite the 300
kilometers that separate the two towns.
Professor Mark Salvarani (professor at the G. Rossini Conservatory
of Pesaro) spoke about Vincent Persichetti. The professor spoke
about the life and the works of Persichetti, with references to
history and musical development during the time period of his
formation. The professor played short pieces by the most influential
composers of the time to accompany his talk. He said Persichetti’s
music moved away from the aleatory (employing the element of chance
in the choice of tones, rests, durations, rhythms, dynamics, etc.)
tendencies of contemporary music.
His compositions were works of craft in the finest sense of
Furthermore, he said Persichetti’s compositional style
became simpler over time and less experimental.
Salvarani explained how Persichetti used two musical styles in
particular, graceful and gritty, and he played two pieces to
highlight the difference.
the professor talked about Persichetti’s teaching at the Julliard
School of New York with stories from his students.
He concluded his talk with a statement made by Steve Reich,
which demonstrates how wonderful Persichetti must have been:
Persichetti was a fantastic teacher, he had enormous musical
knowledge and he knew how to be a chameleon. He listened to you,
looked at your work and became you: he improvised musical pieces in
your same style. He knew what you needed to know in that precise
instant of your musical life; he saw where you were going, not as a
reflection of himself but with heightened awareness of who you were
– truly the sign of a great musical master.”
this statement Professor Salvarani’s talk ended, and he received
accolades and enthusiastic applause from musicians and non-musicians
All found his talk very interesting and comprehensible.
representatives of Falconara Maritimma and Torricella Peligna were
opportunity to speak. The
thanked the association for the invitation and said he
delighted and fortunate he managed to attend the event in place of
the Councilwoman for Cultural Affairs, Stefania Signorini, who
regrettably could not make it.
He promised the support of the town administration of
Falconara Marittima. Carmine Ficca,
young Councilman for
Affairs of Torricella Peligna, then spoke. The councilman was
clearly pleased with the event.
He introduced Torricella Peligna to the Falconara public and
mentioned that many famous people can be traced back to Torricella.
He gave his support to the Vincent Persichetti Music Association and
promised to help organize summer events.
there were the much-anticipated musical performances dedicated to
The first performance did not involve music by Persichetti,
but rather by one of his many students, the still-living, Cuban
composer, Leo Brouwer.
Serpilli, vice president of the association and the association’s
webmaster, performed some pieces for guitar: the Etudioses Sencillos
(Simple Studies), Numbers 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, and “Un dia de Noviembre”.
at last, we heard Persichetti’s music performed live by Roberta
Serpilli! The artistic
director of the association played
for Piano” drawn from a collection of
“12 Sonatas for Piano” dedicated to Vincent
Persichetti’s wife, Dorothea.
conclude, the soprano Angela Depace performed three “songs” from
various compositions for voice that Vincent devoted to twentieth
century poets. The audience enjoyed the suggestive sounds of the
following “songs” for voice and piano (Roberta Serpilli):
the Hills Do” – Emily Dickinson Songs
Child So Wise” – Hilaire Bellock Songs
Song” – James Joyce Songs.
Depace gave an encore, and the inauguration officially concluded.
Then, a delicious buffet was served. The evening continued in the
spirit of friendship and congeniality, and Riccardo Burattini
entertained and amazed everyone with an impromptu piano performance.
but not least, we must thank the Artemisia Artistic Association.
The master artist Stefano Tonti made it possible for us to
adorn the center with artwork by Giň Pomodoro, which gave the
center a touch of elegance and refinement.
From the left: Carmine Ficca, Caterina Serpilli,
Rosanna Persichitti and Cristian Crivelli