Interview with the Whimsical Alessandra Celletti
~Byron Cisneros, special music review for Combustus magazine
Rome, Italy: Pianist Alessandra Celletti emerges onto the stage in a skin-tight gold lame dress. On her head: a whimsical, gold crown. The audience is hushed. Something unusual is about to take place. Her presence suggests a mythical, even magical aura, an effect that is not accidental.
The listener is not disappointed.
“I always loved all kinds of music: rock, pop, classical, electronic, experimental, punk. I’m super curious, always have been. I like to search out things I don’t know about and I have fun experimenting. Since I’m the kind who would never move from home, playing music for me is a way of traveling to far-away places and landscapes. So my musical world is a strange.”
“When I was a child my father had an Afro-American friend. He was a good pianist and sometimes he played ‘The Entertainer’ and other rag-times of Scott Joplin for us. So I dreamed of being able to play those pieces so spectacular and full of colors. Then when I was about 13 years old I listened to the Gymnopedies by Erik Satie: it was immediately a real love. I share his simplicity, the essential harmonies, the freedom and depth of his being.”
Celletti finds a deep connection with composer Baldassare Galuppi:
“About two years ago I recorded an album of sonatas by Venetian composer Baldassarre Galuppi (XVIII century). I find his music sweet and charming and his melodies stay in your ears and in your heart for a long time when you listen to them. I wanted to give my personal interpretation because I love this music deeply. ‘Plays Baldassarre Galuppi‘ was released in 2009, initiating my fantastic collaboration with Transparency, an indie American label, who also produced ‘Sustanza Di Cose Sperata‘ (with Hans-Joachim Roedelius), ‘Alessandra Celletti: Paraphernalia‘ (a book with DVD about me) and my new album ‘Crazy Girl Blue.'”
Celletti is both a performing artist and composer, drawing inspiration from her dreams:
“One night I dreamed I was this completely blue boy and with a propeller on his head. He was unhappy because he had difficulty walking on the earth: his real dimension was elsewhere. In dreams a world which is hidden someplace takes form, a world we cannot touch but that reveals itself at instances, showing its often unknown colors, shapes and emotions. When it shows itself you can opt to ignore it or you can hold onto a line to that magic space. I’m convinced that music is a marvelous instrument for expressing the bond we have with dreams…
My album, ‘Crazy Girl Blue‘ recounts my own dreamlike world through 16 pieces, my fascination with the invisible and my passion for flying. The spirit of the blue boy, melancholic, with the propeller-head, pervades the whole album, leading through an indefinable space without time and without gravity, but where everything is luminous.”
Listen to her album and performances and more on her website.