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Alessandra Belloni Concert & Book Launch
Healing Journeys with the Black Madonna
On behalf of The Glastonbury Gnostic Centre & Chapel, Annabel Du Boulay is honoured to invite you to join Alessandra Belloni as she opens a portal into the sacred sites of the mysterious Black Madonna in Italy and around the world through the launch of her new Book and Concert.
Annabel has known Alessandra for many years and is very honoured to have both performed and travelled with her on pilgrimage through Southern Italy, where Annabel used to live and set her historical novel The Serpent’s Tale which explores the Rose Lineage tradition of the Black Madonna.
Alessandra Belloni is the Artistic Director, Founder and Lead Performer of I GIULLARI DI PIAZZA Italian Music, Theatre and Dance Ensemble, and Artist-in-Residence at the Cathedral of St John the Divine in New York City.
She is the designer of a line of signature series Italian tambourines made by Remo, was voted one of the best female percussionists in the world by DRUM Magazine and won the Best World Percussion CD of the Year.
An internationally renowned and award winning tambourine virtuoso, singer, dancer and actress, Alessandra Belloni was born in Rome, Italy and is committed to preserving the strong and rich traditions of her culture.
In this performance, Alessandra Belloni (lead vocal, mezzo-soprano, southern Italian percussion), guest Lydia Lyte (percussion) and I (vocal, percussion, dance) will bring you healing chants, ritual drumming & trance dance ceremonies in honour of the Black Madonna from southern Italy, France, Spain and Brazil.
Alessandra Belloni will speak about her Book which is based on 35 years of academic research and fieldwork. The book is a musical-spiritual guide highlighting one woman’s mystical journey of empowerment and transformation, and revealing the mysterious Black Madonna as a Christian tradition with origins in pre-Christian devotion to the Earth Goddess and the African Mother. It comprises 12 chapters and each one ends with the description of the ritual prayers, lyrics and notations of the chants.
Her Concert will feature music from the accompanying CD – an enchanting journey of discovery of the seven Black Madonnas, following the ancient Neapolitan legend, known as the “Seven Sisters” in Southern Italy. This trip into traditional legends, miracles and history, transports audiences to a time and place where an unbroken and ancient tradition continues today with processions, drumming rituals, chanting and sensual dancing in honour of the Black Madonna.
The traditional music includes the ancient chant to the Madonna of Montevergine (Avellino) from the region of Campania, the Black Madonna known as Mamma Schiavona, the Serving Mother, who is considered the most important of the seven sisters. She continues to be venerated on a high sacred mountain, which pilgrims still climb barefoot while chanting and drumming in her honor. The drumming is known as tammorriata, a sensual dance which dates back to the rites of the Mother Earth Goddess Cybele, now worshipped as the Black Madonna. It also features new original compositions by Alessandra Belloni dedicated to the Earth Goddess, the Yoruba African Orishas, Ochun, Yemanja, the Black Madonna of the Gypsies from France and the Mary Magdalene.
“My intention is to bring to life the authentic rituals in the South of Italy and show how the Black Madonna is still alive today. The music will make the audience travel to remote areas where she has been worshipped for thousands of years with ritual drumming, haunting chants and sensual trance dances with deep African roots. As a healer and musician, I have dedicated my life to bringing the power of this spiritual rhythm to women around the world. The Black Madonna represents the Earth Mother as a living being. Like the earth’s womb, women’s wombs have often been broken. I strongly believe that in this time of turmoil and paradigm shifts, there is a great need for a compelling CD and Book with a strong message about the Black Madonna. We live in a dangerous time where both women and men need to connect to the true knowledge and healing aspect of the Divine Feminine.”
Alessandra Belloni – Artistic Director & Artist in Residence at the Cathedral of St John the Divine, NYC