Celibidache e Bologna, edited by Luigi Girati and Luigi Verdi, Prefation by Silvia Gajani, Bologna, Forni 2004, 217 pp.

Musica e Scuola, XIX, 9, 2005, pp.16 (Piero Mioli).

Celibidache e BolognaOrchestra conductor Sergiu Celibidache  more than any others linked his name to the symphonic activity of the Teatro Comunale of Bologna in the second half of the 1900s. A wide variety of anecdotes about his presence in Bologna has flourished, also fostered by the brilliance of his executions and by the unpredictability of his character. He is unanimously considered as one of the most renowned interpreter of the 1900s and is closely linked to Bologna, where he debuted as a conductor in 1953, and  contributed in a determining way to the increasing fame of the Teatro Comumale Orchestra; the latter responded enthusiastically but not without resounding clashes and tension, which resulted in his stormy abandoning the podium in 1973. Fifty years after Celibidache’s Bolognese debut, some historiographic research work seems to be necessary as to his Bolognese activity, which also aims at clarifying and analysing the various phases of his presence in the city, some of which are still surrounded by a halo of legend today. In this view, the contributions of various personalities of the Bolognese musical life who collaborated with Celibidache or witnessed those years (such as Giovanni Adamo, Eugenio Amadori, Carlo Maria Badini, Maria Bagnoli, Mario Baroni, William Bignami, Giorgio Combissa, Duilio Courir, Daniele Da Deppo, Pierluigi Ghetti, Luigi Girati, Giuliano Giuliani, Tito Gotti, Dario Lodi, Leone Magiera, Alberto Mantovani, Alberto Martelli, Enrico Quarenghi, Piero  Rattalino, Dario Ravetti, Giampaolo Salbego, Luciano Tamburini, Paolo Varetti) have been collected . Some of these contributions are colloquial and anecdotic, some other ones are more historical and critical. My warmest thanks to all of them for having contributed to giving us back a vivid and intense image of the great conductor.
Particularly relevant is also the whole text of the press-conference given by the Maestro on the occasion of the Course in Orchestra Conducting held in Bologna in 1972, and the analysis of Celibidache’s concert recordings kept by the Archivio Storico (Archives) of the Teatro Comunale of Bologna, edited by Alberto Spano.
Then, Celibidache’s activity as Chairman of the Accademia Filarmonica of Bologna (1972-73) is gone over again through the analysis of the documents kept at the Archivio Storico (Archives) of the Accademia.
The book ends with the complete list and with a wide press review of Celibidache’s 50 Bolognese concerts, from the most important dailies from 1953 to 1973, particularly Il Resto del Carlino (articles by Leonello Levi, Duilio Courir, Adriano Cavicchi), L’Avvenire d’Italia (G.M.Modonesi) and L’Unità (Mario Baroni). The press review is supplemented with articles on Celibidache’s returning to Bologna (1987) and with other important contributions, particularly those appeared on the most important dailies on the occasion of the Maestro’s death (August 1996) signed by some of the most relevant Italian music critics (Piero Buscaroli, Angelo Foletto, Paolo Isotta, Leonardo Pinzauti).
A rich store of photos and documents from the Archivio Girati completes the book, which is a handy and enjoyable reading text both for music experts and fans.

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