The Martino-Ensemble performs music from the southern regions of Italy, especially Naples and Sicily. The changeful history of the island, which was regularly objective of foreign conquests due to it’s prominence as trade and seafaring center, is reflected in all forms of the sicilian culture. Several peoples colonised Sicily and left their traces particularly in the sicilian language, which differs strongly from the standard italian language.
As a mixture of european and arabic ingredients the sicilian popular music has a very particular and distinctible character. Eversince music was the instrument for the lower strata of the society to express their feelings, wishes, desires and worries. By contrast stand the usually more elaborate tunes from Naples, which often were written for local composition competitions.
The Martino-Ensemble brings the characteristics of this music home to the audience via elegant and extraordinary fascinating arrangements. The performance is embedded into a presentation that explains the content and the historical as well as the cultural context.