The Mandolin and Guitar Orchestra “Euterpe” was founded in 1947 thanks to the engagement of Giovanni Ferrari and with the cooperation of some mandolin friends. It is the only mandolin orchestra in Trentino-South Tyrol region.
Already in 1948, when the Orchestra held its first public concert, it was a great success, the first one of a long series. The first conductor was Maestro Grisold, keen musician and pianist. Its successor was Maestro De Checchi, who conducted the ensemble for over 20 years and “handed the baton” to Maestro Giuseppe Califano in February 1978. Afterwards the conductor was Cav. Vincenzo Talarico, from January 1992 to January 2005.
With the first radio recording at RAI studio in Bolzano, the Orchestra became well-known and was appreciated in the whole region and outside too. Altogether 75 radio recordings took place in the fifties, sixties and early seventies. There have been several television appearances in recent years both on local broadcasting stations and on the RAI regional channel. Moreover in 2002 there was an appearance on the Second Channel of the German Television ZDF (Sunday concert).
The Orchestra took part in Italian and international remarkable competitions. In 1968 it was placed third at the International Competition in Brescia’s “Teatro Grande” and in 1979 it took part in the competition held at the town theatre of Ferrara. In 2000 there was the participation in the International Competition in Falkenstein in Taunus (Germany) and in 2001 in the “7th International Trophy City of Casarza Ligure” where it took the first place in the “ensemble music” category. In 2002 the Orchestra got the first prize in the orchestra category in the 12thInternational Contest for Musicians “City of Barletta”. In 2003 it got the first prize at San Vincenzo (Leghorn) in the 4th Competition of Music Performance “Etruscan Riviera” in the orchestra category and the second prize in the 5th National Music Competiton “Euterpe” at Corato (Bari). Moreover it was admitted to the final performance at the 8th International Chamber Music Competition “G. Zinetti” at Sanguinetto (Verona).
The Orchestra took part in many festivals and music events, such as the “Brescia Mandolin Week” in 1973, held in St. Francis Cathedral and in the 6th Mandolin Festival “City of Turin”, held in the concert hall of the Conservatoire “G. Verdi” in Turin in 1998. In August 1999 the ensemble went to Spain, on the occasion of the 33rd European Festival “Plectro Rioja”, where it held concerts in Logroño, Arnedo and Alfaro. In September 2000 the Orchestra gave a concert in the “Foyer Rossini” of Bologna’s town theatre on the occasion of the European Festival within the “European Convention of Plectrum Music” and in October 2001 it took part in the 1st“National Meeting on Mandolin and Plucked String Music” in Vittorio Veneto, where it played at St. Andrew’s. One year later it gave a concert in Friedrichshafen (Germany) on the occasion of the “Plectrum Music Eurofestival 2002”, where it had the honour to represent Italy, together with another orchestra. In September 2004 the Orchestra was back to Germany, in Rudolstadt, as sole orchestra invited to represent Italy to the 1st International Plectrum Music Festival.
The yearly Summer concert in the magnificent inner court of Mareccio Castle in Bolzano at the end of August always meets with great success by the audience.
Even if during a half century many things changed, the most important requirement for the Orchestra life is always the same: that is enthusiasm for mandolin music. Since its foundation, the Mandolin Orchestra “Euterpe” has got a very large repertoire, from classical to contemporary music and it includes Neapolitan music as well, which has been “rediscovered” in the last years because it is still peculiar to mandolin all over the world.
Nowadays the Mandolin Orchestra “Euterpe“, which gives from 10 to 15 concerts a year, is formed by about twenty mandolin and guitar amateur musicians, both young and aged people. Its final aims are to preserve a unique music tradition and to revalue mandolin.
Since October 2004 the “Mandolin and Guitar School” has been started thanks to the support of the Special Fund for Voluntary Work of the Autonomous Province of Bolzano too, with the main purpose to increase the number of the orchestra members in the near future.
Maestro Ugo Orrigo, holder of a mandolin diploma, has been the new conductor since February 1st 2005. Among the performances which took place in 2005, the concert held in Lugano on November 19th at the “Cattaneo” hall of the Italian Consulate together with the Lugano Orchestra in favour of the ARMR (Association for Research on Rare Diseases) and the one in Bolzano on November 26th at the Dominicans’ together with the Mandolin Orchestra from Rudolstadt (Germany) must be mentioned. In March 2006 the Orchestra gave two concerts in Switzerland, at Samedan and in St. Moritz, for raising funds in order to build a new school in Pondicherry (India). In April 2008 the orchestra performed in Vienna in the 3rd District together with the "Tuma"-Orchestra as well as in Sopron in Hungary, partner city of Bolzano. In 2009 concerts has been hold at the Teatro Filodrammatici in Cremona, in the St. Michael-Church of Arpino (Frosinone) and in the Presule castle (Fiè allo Sciliar - Bolzano).
In the three yearsfrom 2010 to 2012the Orchestrahasheldthe summer concerts, etc.inAuronzo(Belluno), Caderzone(Trento), in the Radetzkyhall inCusani-Palace in Milan(September 2011) andin theSanPoloChurchin Venice at the Italianmandolinfestival "Mandolins in Venice" (October2012), thena concerttogether with theMandolinenorchsterRudolstadtandtheorganizationof a prestigiousconcert of the mandolin-guitar duo "La Corda" (November 2012).
In May2013, the orchestra participated atthe 3rd InternationalFestivalmandolinsin Rudolstadt(Germany).In August the8th InternationalMandolinAcademywas heldin Bolzano.
In 2014the orchestratook part at the 1st InternationalFestival ofmandolins andguitarsin the BourglinstercastleinLuxembourg.In Augustthe9th InternationalMandolinAcademywas heldin Bolzano.In October, aconcert was held at the PalaisCusaniin Milan.
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