Italy has been famous for its great classical music since the Renaissance period of the sixteenth century. It is interesting to know that Italian folk music influenced classical pieces and classical pieces have influenced Italian folk music.
The opera house in Venice, La Fenice, gave street performances for free so the citizens could sing the great opera arias. Opera pieces soon became the pop music of the day. Italians are passionate people. The love songs of Italian folk music are famous around the world. The Italian’s passion for life is reflected in folk dances as well.
Musical Vacations to Italy Show Folk Music Has Distinct Regional Flavors
A vacation to Italy soon reveals that Italian music is roughly divided between North and South Italy. There is also a difference in the songs of Venice and other sea ports and the songs from the Italian Alps. The music appreciation student who is traveling through Italy will find that Neopolitan music, from Naples, and Sicilian music, from Sicily, are fiery pieces.
There are Middle Eastern influences in the music, because of the location near the Mediterranean Sea. A musical tour of Italy prove that the songs of Tuscany and Piedmont in Northern Italy are more melodic. Venetian folk melodies show up in the works of Mozart and many other composers. Florence was a well-spring of classical and folk music in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Florence and Venice, the Cradle of Italian Classical Music
Florence was once the seedbed of all forms of Italian art. It was in Florence that the first musical drama was performed, which eventually led to the invention of opera. Rome was the seat of the Catholic Church, so folk music from Rome has religious overtones to it. The Venetian school of music was the first to employ stringed instruments. Soon Northern Italy became the birthplace of the Stradivarius, Armadi and Guanari violins.