Two days marked by emotions, memories and anecdotes about one of the most important and innovative Italian singer-songwriters, Lucio Dalla, inextricably tied to the coastal town, which inspired his “Caruso” written in July 1986, and to the town of Irpinia where that song, destined to become one of the most frequently sung compositions in the world, was performed for the first time on August 17 of that year as part of the “San Martino Arte” festival. And in the name of the artist from Bologna there has been introduced a twinning between Sorrento and San Martino Valle Caudina, signed by the mayors, Giuseppe Cuomo and Pasquale Pisano, and the Councillors for Culture, Maria Teresa De Angelis and Francesco Bello, with mutual delivery of the keys of the two towns. “The twinning with Sorrento is a page of history – said Mayor Pisano – For us it is a source of great pride. We hope to be able to inaugurate a path of cultural and also economic initiatives for our companies, especially those active in the food industry, and for us to get out of the isolation that unfortunately characterizes almost all the internal areas of Campania.” An appeal raised by Mayor Cuomo, who said he was available to encourage exchanges and actions between the two communities, also in terms of business development. “Today marks the beginning of a journey of friendship and work in memory of Dalla. – he announced – He is one of the figures that have made Sorrento great. He in turn was received with great affection by the Sorrentines early in his career. For this we are certain that the bond with the citizens of San Martino will be sincere, strong and lasting.” To further enrich the event, a conference on the topic of “Lucio Dalla: a man, a poet and a musician” was organized by the Sorrentine writer Raffaele Lauro, who in his speeches retraced the four intense years dedicated to Dalla, including books, a documentary film, a tour and now also a song. “I am proud – he said – as a Sorrentine and as an honorary citizen of San Martino Valle Caudina, to have brought back to our two communities the heritage of memories linked to Lucio Dalla, consecrated by this historic twinning open to the future.” A meeting between Sorrento and San Martino Valle Caudina was described as a “weirdness of life”, by Gianni Raviele, former head of the cultural division of Tg1, creator of shows such as Prisma and Primissima and creator of “San Martino Arte”, the summer festival which apart from Dalla hosted some of the most famous protagonists of our pop music. “Dalla linked us with a common thread with Sorrento – he said – Nobody would ever think that a small mountain town unknown to most people would have formed relationships with a centre famous in the world, a beacon of dreams and love. All in the sign of friendship that for Dalla was a vital reference point.” Vincenzo Mollica, a familiar face of TV journalism, recalled over the phone his frequent episodes with the participation of Lucio Dalla in Sorrento and in San Martino Valle Caudina. “Caruso contains the highest essence of his poetry. – he said – He was proud of that song. Moreover Lucio was a Verdian, prone to melodrama. Yet his love for life and people was unique and special.” A citizen of the world, an author of texts of great modernity marked by a fusion. But also a man for whom friendship was a vital point of reference, as witnessed by the three Sorrentine friends of the singer-songwriter: Angelo Leonelli, the “laic confessor” of Dalla, who in his place at Marina Piccola welcomed the singer-songwriter whenever he visited Sorrento. Pharmacist Gianfranco Villa and entrepreneur Riccardo Scarselli. At the conclusion of the special two days, the speech of Ferdinando Pinto, Sorrento's mayor at the time of the conferral of honorary citizenship to Lucio Dalla, proposed by the current mayor, Giuseppe Cuomo. Pinto recalled the ceremony in the summer of 1997, when the artist showed up in shorts and T-shirt. “He managed to make us feel inadequate, with our jackets, ties and smart clothes. – he said – That's when I realized that he was a real leader.”


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