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Enrico Pieranunzi: Fellini Jazz

Federico Fellini made cinematic masterpieces like La Dolce Vita and La Strada, but who remembers 50-year-old movie soundtracks anymore?

Enrico Pieranunzi remembers. In fact, anyone who has ever seen a Fellini film has Fellini imagery embedded in memory, and the medium of recovery is the music of Nino Rota, Fellini’s musical collaborator for 29 years. It is a paradox: Fellini’s visual imagery, with its clowns and freaks and obese dancing whores, is often grotesque. But the scores of Nino Rota are the opposite, gentle and melodic and whimsical. It is the music in Fellini films that carries their deepest themes of nostalgia and mystery and forlorn hope.

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