He‘s not just a single musician - he‘s a full orchestra. When Luigi Lai, born in San Vito, Sardinia, in 1932 plays his launeddas, he amazes the whole world with the enchanting sound of the Mediterranean‘s oldest wind instrument. He plays it in processions and at parties, on the stages of New York, London, Paris and Brussels, in China und in Australia. Now and again he even plays it at funerals: In Frankfurt, a husband wanted a launeddas concert in memory of his deceased wife who, after a holiday in Sardinia, had listened to the music of Luigi Lai on CD every morning in her house on the Rhine.
The great composer and maestro started playing at the age of eight. He recalls: „The sounds reached me from a backyard and just enchanted me.“ It was when he was still at school that he fi rst learnt how to blow into the two melody pipes (mancosedda and mancosa manna) and drone pipe (tumbu) at the same time. He then took lessons from the great maestro Efisio Lara from Villaputzu and then studied the instrument until he had perfected his playing.
Today, he plays alongside the great virtuosi of contemporary music, such as Angelo Branduardi and Paolo Fresu and has founded a school of music for children and young people.
When Luigi Lai plays the launeddas, it seems as if the sounds of the violin, the flute, the oboe, the tambourine, the bassoon, the piano and the harpsichord are all ringing out at the same time - but it is only the launeddas. The pipes blend into a unique resonating body, which has, as it were, been entrusted to a unique director. „The launeddas is my life.“ It is also the most harmonious voice of Sardinia, the jewel of the Mediterranean.
(Text Giacomo Mameli)
Her debut novel, "La custode del miele e delle api", has been translated into 22 languages to date. In Germany, the book was published in 2015 under the title "The Honey Daughters". Her stories combine sweetness, cheerfulness, the idyll, and family. With her elegant writing style, she immerses readers in past worlds.
With our letter from Sardinia this year, we want to introduce you to Sardinia‘s most famous wine: Cannonau. It is believed to have existed since the time of the Nuraghi, making this glorious wine about 3000 years old. This is a wine whose trademark is its history.
With our letter from Sardinia this year, we want to introduce you to Mercato di San Benedetto, the market of the Holy Benedikt.
With this year's letter from Sardinia, we would like to introduce you to a Sardinian musician with a world-wide reputation. Luigi Lai has the following to say about his instrument, the oldest wind instrument in the Mediterranean area: "The launeddas is my life". It is also the most harmonious voice of Sardinia, the jewel of the Mediterranean.
In this letter, we would like to introduce you to the contemporary ceramic works of the famous Sardinian artist Emilia Palomba. Her workshop is currently in Cagliari, the capital of Sardinia, but she previously also worked in Rome and Venice. The studio in Cagliari is always worth a visit.
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