With kind authorization by Virtual Volume AG, Hamburg:

"L’infinitamente piccolo - infinitely small"

Hamburg Hamburg, January 10th 2001

In perfect shape and mood, the Italian singer, composer and multi-instrumentalist Angelo Branduardi presented his new album "L'infinitamente piccolo" during the same-named tour. He definitely captivated the audience in Hamburg with "L’infinitamente piccolo", a sensitive and poetic cycle of songs about the life and work of the Holy Fancis of Assisi (1181 - 1226) as well as with Branduardi classics such as "Alla Fiera Dell'Est" and "La Pulce D'Acqua".

The little big man with the wild, curly hair enters the grand hall of the Hamburg Musikhalle around 9 pm and, instead of picking up the violin or guitar at once, he proceeds to the front of the stage. Then, the exceptional musician from Cuggiono, a small village near Milano, gives a basic introduction into the world of the "infinitely small", so the English translation of the title of his new work.

Branduardi, speaking in German, talks in a humorous manner about Francis of Assisi, whom he alternately calls Franz and Francesco and tells his fans that the idea for the highly ambitious project came from two Fanciscan monks.

"The idea wasn't mine, but instead two Franciscan monks in their wonderful attire knocked on my door and proposed the project to me (just add the Italian accent and a heavily rolled "R"). I thought, 'me, Angelo, the guy who has met a few, if not many, less than earnest women and who is a sinner at any rate is supposed to compose music to the works of a holy man', but the monks calmed my fears and said 'Angelo, don't worry, God always chooses the worst' (the entire concert hall laughs), and so "L’infinamente piccolo" was conceived.

Hamburg The album itself consists of twelve pieces in which Branduardi interprets conveyed sermons, "La Predica Della Perfetta Letizia - sermon to absolute joy", illustrations of episodes from the life of the saint, "Il Lupo Di Gubbio - The Wolf from Gubbio", and the world renowned sun chant by Assisi.

On this evening Branduardi opens his song cycles with the Italian version of the religious hymn "Il cantico delle creature" (sun chant) followed by "Il Sultano Di Babilonia E La Prostituta - The Sultan from Babylonia and the Prostitute". The 50 year old, who has been making grand pop music for over 25 years now, plays and sings ten out of the twelve songs from his new album with his three piece band and thrills his audience with his sonic pop worlds.
On "L’ifinitamente piccolo" Branduardi masterfully combined Renaissance motives, medieval ranges and Oriental harmonics with pop music. With each song the artist displays his enormous versatility and gift for musical variation. All the while, the audience expresses its gratitude with vehement applause and standing ovations lasting several minutes.

The second part of the performance is influenced by Branduadi's classics. With "Alla Fiera Dell'Est", title song of his '76 album, for which he received one of his first grand awards, the renowned Italian critic award "Premio della Critica Discografica", "Pulce D'Acqua" (1978), and the masterpiece "Cogli La Prima Mela" (1979) the musician lays down further highlights.

Hamburg After 120 sensitive, humor filled as well as religious-poetic minutes, Angelo Branduardi ends his musical evening with the German version of the sun chant and, in accordance with his lady lover image, a love song.

To sum up: "The things that inspire me about Francis of Assisi are his happy nature and his admirable fullness of life which so much set him apart from the blank stares and dry spirituality of traditional monks", so Branduardi in the liner notes to "L'infinamente piccolo"." But Francis of Assisi was a great poet as well. He loved songs and cherished his passion, even if he was alone. I've tried to give a new voice to his words."

The most remarkable thing about the album is the fact that Branduardi not only found a way to give a new voice to Assisi, but the album also proves that highly poetic and religious subjects can be symbiotically combined with modern pop.

Virtual Volume AG, Hamburg
Pictures, text: A. Schierholz/Virtual-Volume
Translation: J. DeStefano

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