Dardust, the world's most-listened-to new-generation Italian pianist and composer, is the maestro Concertatore of the twenty-fifth edition of the Melpignano Concert, scheduled for 27 August 2022
A multi-platinum producer, Dardust will conduct the Orchestra Popolare della Taranta, world excellence of World Music and official ambassador of the pizzica in the world.
Dardust, who has set to music events such as the Superbowl (2018) and the NBA All Star Game (2019), met the musicians of the Notte della Taranta at the Bari fairgrounds to launch the planning of the Concertone, which is set to become the international event of the 2022 Apulian summer.
Dardust's sound culture and taste for experimentation led the Fondazione La Notte della Taranta to entrust the direction of the Concertone to one of the most important authors and producers on the Italian scene. Dardust's musical sensibility is behind such hit songs as Nuova Era by Jovanotti, Voce di Madame, Seta by Elisa, and Soldi by Mahmood. Dardust will have the task of uniting three seemingly distant worlds: popular music with its ancestral pizzica with piano solo and electronics.
"We chose Dardust, one of the most influential producers in Italy," explained Massimo Manera, president of the La Notte della Taranta Foundation, "for his ability to have an international outlook and Mediterranean empathy, for his continuous research and experimentation work. In the twenty-fifth edition, with the Artistic Direction of the Popular Orchestra, we therefore take on a new challenge and for the first time entrust the Concertone in its complex fusion of languages to a producer who loves the contrast between tradition and the future and the cosmic atmospheres that his name inspires: the alien Ziggy Stardust created by David Bowie. We like to imagine Concertone 25 as a spaceship launched into the future, projecting this immense and intangible cultural heritage, generated by the pizzica, into space. We are certain that Dardust will amaze us with his musical and emotional journey of stylistic and technical invention, imagination and magic".
His latest collaboration, due out in November 2021, sees him alongside Sophie and The Giant, Benny Benassi and Astrality on the single Golden Nights.
As a producer and songwriter, he has collaborated with leading Italian artists: Jovanotti, Fiorella Mannoia, Elisa, Marracash, Madame, Elodie, TheGiornalisti, Marco Mengoni, Fedez, Francesca Michielin, Annalisa, Luca Carboni, Mahmood, La Rappresentante di Lista, Irama and many others, boasting a palmares of over 60 platinum records.
S.A.D. Storm and Drugs was released internationally in January 2020 by Sony Masterworks and Artist First. The last chapter of a discograﬁc trilogy that crosses the Berlin-Reykjavík-Edinburgh geographic/musical axis, the first Italian instrumental music project capable of uniting the minimalist piano world with the current electronic imagery of the Northern European matrix. In October 2020, the track STURM I - FEAR, extracted from this record, was chosen by the computer giant Apple Inc. as part of Apple's annual keynote for the launch of new product presentations. The event was streamed from the Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino, California. In March 2021, he presented a special and unique project: S.A.D The Movie, an animated short film directed by Brazilian animator Guilherme Gehr, distributed by Red Couch Pictures and soundtracked based on his record trilogy.
After touring all of Italy in 2019 with the LOST IN SPACE TOUR, Dardust returns live in the summer of 2021 with STORM AND DRUGS LIVE, articulated in two acts: the first, Storm, more intimate and with a theatrical cut, which takes up the poetics and imagery of the 18th-century sturm und drang in every visual aspect; the second, Drugs, which draws on the more electro side, creating a true rave atmosphere.
THE NIGHT OF THE TARANTA
La Notte della Taranta is the biggest and most important popular music festival in Europe and in 2022 it will celebrate 25 YEARS OF HISTORY.
Since 1998, La Notte della Taranta has made it possible to promote and spread internationally the music and dance of the Salento: the PIZZICA.
An annual summer event, it attracts thousands of people from all over the world to Melpignano, a small town in the Salento region of Grecìa. A true ritual where the ancestral power of the tambourine transforms the night of music into a large, free dancing community. The 'pizzica' is a dance belonging to the tarantella family used in the past as a cure for the 'tarantate', disadvantaged women who, according to popular belief, were plucked by the poisonous spider. A small orchestra and the dance of the pizzica with the intercession of St Paul and other saints, again according to popular belief, led to healing. The socio-anthropological phenomenon of tarantismo is well described by Ernesto De Martino in his 'La terra del rimorso'.
Today, the Taranta people no longer believe in the legendary bite of the tarantula, but the spider has become the symbol that creates a new and contemporary ritual around the zoomorphic deity: the Taranta. There is no longer exorcism but worship around the dancing god. Those who come to Melpignano or dance the pizzica anywhere in the world no longer need to be attacked by an external element to share in the ritual. There is no tarantismo device in our time, but THE NIGHT OF THE TARANTA was the trigger for a new way of conceiving dance and music in Salento and the CONCERTONE is the lighting of the votive fire of this modern gathering that ends every year at the crack of dawn and that during the pandemic was broadcast by Rai 2 in 2020 and by Rai 1 in 2021 and also landed throughout Europe on ItsArt the platform of Italian Art and Culture with the special project Reincanto.