Italian musician and producer Bruno Dorella guides us to "Paradiso", his new solo album, with the music for the homonymous choreographic project of gruppo nanou, to be released on CD and digital on November 25th, 2022 by the independent label 13 / Silentes.
"Paradiso" was born for the choreography of the new show by gruppo nanou, a contemporary dance and performing arts company, founded by Marco Valerio Amico, Rhuena Bracci and Roberto Rettura. The collaboration between Dorella and the company has started almost a decade ago and over time has also involved Ronin and OvO, the main bands of the Ravenna-based musician - OvO were on stage in 2021 for Canto Primo: Miasma | Arsura, an encounter between sounds and infernal images, with Dante's recurring reference.
But there is more than this. "Paradiso" is also the first electronic music album made by Dorella who, during the lockdown period, focused himself more and more on softwares. The tracks are composed according to the bodies and the choreography of the show. Dorella says: "The composition took a long time. The choreographic needs, and the effect of music on the bodies, often led me to think with a broader perspective. Me and the members of gruppo nanou started the work from mutual suggestions and gradually we understood each other faster and faster. We defined a common conception of rhythm, deciding to work on apparently 'off-grid' rhythms, creating the illusion of something wrong together but perfectly timed. In reality, these rhythms are parallel planes that travel in time with each other, even if out of phase."
"Saturno" is the first single taken from "Paradiso" and contains the fundamental elements of the entire work. That is, parallel, overlapping, sinuous rhythms, apparently out of phase but which "turn" together. In addition to abstract guitars and breath as the only source of voice.
According to gruppo nanou: "Bruno has composed a choreographic work. We have verified together how sound can accommodate the body and be in dialogue with the scenic action. It was a transitive operation between scene and sound, bodies and the material density of sounds, vibrations and motion. The beauty of this musical work is that it is concrete matter and at the same time it is a precise thought. All the rules and limitations that we set for the creation of the show - regarding choreography, sound, lights and scene - have managed to be assimilated to become creative resources and therefore to become exact viscera."
The journey of "Paradiso" is articulated into thirteen tracks and ends with the title track, which is also the brand new single from the album and the only episode that can be assimilated to an "alien" song-form, featuring Francesca Amati (Comaneci) on vocals. Dorella speaking: "We always thought that, at a certain point, we needed a 'song'. With Francesca there is a long-standing collaboration and gruppo nanou loves her tone of voice, so it has always been clear that she would be the one to sing the song. But she had to do it in a non-existent and unidentifiable language. So, I broke down the syllables of what Francesca had sung, recomposing them with a new result."
In Dorella's long and eclectic career, "Paradiso" is only his second solo record, following "Concerto per chitarra solitaria", created for a contemporary classical music festival and released in 2019 by Bronson Recordings. "I always thought of ensemble music, never really in the solo dimension, and I always imagined that if I ever made a record on my own and with my name on it, it would be related to pure composition", Dorella explains. Active since the late 90s, Bruno Dorella is also known under the pseudonym Jack Cannon and was a member of Wolfango, as well as founder of OvO, Ronin and Bachi da Pietra, and more recently of Tiresia and the GDG Modern Trio, as well as an element of Sigillum S. "Paradiso" is the first record that testifies his experience in the field of theater music, developed through collaboration with various theater and dance companies.
"Paradiso" is a collective effort among the contemporary research dance company gruppo nanou and the artist Alfredo Pirri. Its path begins in 2021 and continues until July 2022 through appointments, called sketches, intended as the progressive deepening and development of research and tests for the construction of a performative process that removes the concept of the beginning and end of a performance, as well as its front use.
The space is intended as an active place in which to immerse oneself, creating an impromptu community that accesses the performance as it happens in a museum exhibition. "Paradiso" is the beginning of a common journey starting from the Third Canticle of Dante Alighieri’s Commedia; as a paradise, it is an elsewhere space, inhabited by light and evanescent figures; a long cinematic shot in which to immerse yourself thanks to the music of Bruno Dorella. The stage space consists of a mirrored dance floor obtained by combining different layers of silver and gold carpets where reverberating spaces and territories, intertwined and choreographed by gruppo nanou. Indirect lighting allows the carpet to reflect the surrounding space, welcoming it inside visually and creating a floating perception and making the floor like a pond where the bodies in movement flake with evanescent contours. The place determines each time the use and arrangement of the scene created by Pirri; the space, as well as the bodies and the light, is reflected by the mirrored surface of the carpets, redesigning the geometry of the space itself. For this identity of relationship between place and scene, each Paradise is unique and unrepeatable, thus finding the impossibility of describing a Paradise uniquely, as Dante wrote in the beginning of the Third Canticle.
The gestures lose all trace of naturalism to turn into an abstract choreography, whose meaning is in the desire to bridge the distance between the gaze (of the viewer) and the bodies in action. The limit of the backgrounds is forced, torn, deteriorated by the body that attacks it with its choreographic action. The choreographic images are produced “accidentally”, and the bodies are immediately pulverized thanks to the process of abstraction that produces pure plasticity that surpasses all other instances. The evidence of every research step or residency is called sketch and, even if is still a studio form, it shows how the performative device works on the space, its architecture or lack of it, recreating and rethinking both the stage and how the audience interact with it. As it will be in his final form, every sketch is different from the others; not a step forward but a step in deep the research. In each different spaces there will be different sets and choreographic compositions. A difficult experience to tell.
Music composed, played, recorded and mixed by Bruno Dorella
Mastered by Giuseppe Ielasi
Vocals on 6 & 13 by Francesca Amati
Vocals 4, 9 & 10 by Elisabetta Da Rold
Voices treatment on 1 by Bruno Dorella & Giovanni Lami, 5 includes parts of Old Vogue Dancer by Bruno Dorella, 11 includes a sample by Stefano Ghittoni
Layout and artwork by Marco Valerio Amico
Photos by Daniele Casadio
Project: gruppo nanou, Alfredo Pirri, Bruno Dorella
Choreography: Marco Valerio Amico, Rhuena Bracci
Scenic space: Alfredo Pirri
Music: Bruno Dorella
Lights: Marco Valerio Amico
Colors: Marco Valerio Amico, Alfredo Pirri
Costumes: Rhuena Bracci
With Carolina Amoretti, Marina Bertoni, Vera Borghini, Rhuena Bracci, Francesca Dibiase, Andrea Dionisi, Agnese Gabrielli, Marco Maretti, Emanuel Santos, Sofia Pazzocco, Michele Scappa
And the graduates (2019) of the Post Diploma – Dance Course of the Civica Scuola di Teatro “Paolo Grassi” of Milan: Livia Bartolucci, Alessandra Cozzi, Elisabetta Da Rold, Agnese Gabrielli, Nicolò Giorgini, Simone Mazzanti, Camilla Neri, Francesca Rinaldi, Pablo Ezequiel Rizzo, Bruna Romano
Production: Nanou Associazione Culturale, Ravenna Festival
Contributon: MIC, Regione Emilia-Romagna, Comune di Ravenna, Fondazione del Monte di Bologna e Ravenna
Collaboration: Civica Scuola di Teatro “Paolo Grassi” di Milano
Support: Centro di Residenza della Toscana (Armunia-CapoTrave/Kilowatt), E Production, ATCL Circuito Multidisciplinare del Lazio per Spazio Rossellini Polo Culturale Multidisciplinare della Regione Lazio, C.U.R.A. Centro Umbro Residenze Artistiche, Spazio ZUT!, Indisciplinarte, La Mama Umbria International