The XV edition of TaranTarsia: between tradition, innovation and experimentation


By John

Tradition, innovation, experimentation were the cornerstones of the XV Edition of TaranTarsia, scheduled for 25 and 26 August. The music and reggae sounds of Africa Unite made the thousands of fans who came from all over Calabria dance to enjoy unique emotions up close. The fifteenth edition of the Festival, created by the Musikart Cultural Association and sponsored by the Municipality of Tarsia, ends on a positive note. The event, present in the “Calabria Sona” circuit, is financed with PSC Development and Cohesion Plan 6.02.02 resources provided as a result of the “Cultural Activities 2022″ Notice by the Calabria Region – Department of Education, Training and Equal Opportunities – Culture Sector”.

The evening of Saturday 26 August, dedicated to experimentation and innovation, opened with the performance of the Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino on the stage in Piazza San Francesco. And during the night, the songs from the latest album “Non è Fortuna” and some evergreens from the historic repertoire of Africa Unite accompanied the many fans who came on a distant journey towards Jamaica: the homeland of reggae. Since their formation in 1981, Africa Unite continues their long career full of incredible successes and recognition. The band, after over forty years, is present on stages throughout Italy with its historic sound characterized by upbeat rhythm, reggae, dub and electronics. Original melodies, entertainment, colors and smiles: the band conquers the stage and the Tarsia audience. As Madaski – one of the band’s founders – says: «the South has a reggae soul».

The prices

Three prizes were awarded on the evening of August 26th: The “Tarantrsia Award” for the organizational and managerial aspect to Giuseppe Marasco, head of the Calabria Sona circuit, which has spread Made in Calabria music throughout the world. The recognition award goes to the “Ragazzi della Sangria”, the right arm of the event organization for 15 years, and finally the “TaranTarsia Award” to Africa Unite, a point of reference for Italian reggae from the 80s to today.

The educational pact

Not just music and entertainment. The results of an interesting project were presented on the TaranTarsia stage, with Rossana Nociti, administrator of the Municipality of Spezzano Albanese, Pasquale Motta and Simona Verta, administrators of the Municipality of San Lorenzo del Vallo speaking about them. From spring 2021, the culture departments of four municipalities of S. Lorenzo del Vallo, Spezzano Albanese, Terranova da Sibari and Tarsia at the invitation of professor Aldo Pugliese (president of the Polis association) together with the Archdiocese of Rossano Cariati and with the support of Archbishop SE Maurizio Aloise, have conceived, promoted and concluded a prize competition, which aims to review the three encyclicals of Pope Francis: “Laudato sii”, “Fratelli tutti”, “Evangeli gaudium” and the interview book “Ritorniamo a dream.” Aimed at students of all levels of schools in the four countries, dedicated to the themes of sustainable development and care of our common home, rights and solidarity among human beings.

A window on world music

The fifteenth edition of the Festival marked a return to the origins, the opportunity to reiterate the close link with traditional popular music by opening a window onto World Music. «We aim to enhance and grow the event, bringing artists of high musical and cultural quality to the stage. This is Tarantarsia” – says Katia Cannizzaro, president of the Musikart association. «From an event dedicated to tarantella, the Festival has now become the most anticipated world music event in southern Italy». «With the lights out – concludes Cannizzaro – we are already thinking about the next edition. We are ready, once again, to dance the night away.” Satisfaction was also expressed by the mayor of Tarsia Roberto Ameruso: «We are happy with the success of the XV Edition of TaranTarsia. We have supported, and will continue to do so, the growth of the event by focusing on the musical quality of the artists while respecting the history of Tarsia and the event made up of tradition, innovation and experimentation”.