Famous harmonics of the Kingdom of Naples: Andreana Basile ,Giulia De Caro and Anna Maria Scarlatti

Gregorio Strozzi (c. 1615-1692/93)

Mascara sonata e ballata dei Cavalieri Napolitani nel Regio Palazzo, for two violins and continuo

Giovanni Salvatore (1611-1688)

Corrente prima and Corrente seconda for harpsichord

Antonio Valente (c. 1520-1601)

Gagliarda napoletana for harpsichord

Antonio Valente (c. 1520-1601)

Ballo dell’intorcia for harpsichord

Donato Basile (c. 1588/89-1613)

Amorosi prieghi for voce and continuo

Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)

Ohimè ch’io cado for voce and continuo

Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)

from  Arianna: «Lasciatemi morire» for voce and continuo

Giovanni Cicinelli principe di Cursi (17th century)

Aspettatemi sentite for voce and continuo

Pietro Andrea Ziani (1616-1684)

from  Annibale in Capua: «Io d’Emilia custode» for voice, two violins and continuo

Francesco Provenzale (1632-1704)

from Stellidaura vendicante: «Su mio cuore alla vendetta» for voice, two violins and continuo

Alessandro Scarlatti (1660-1725)

O voi di queste selve abitatrici for voice and continuo

Domenico Scarlatti (1685-1757)

from Ottavia restituita al trono: «Quel nodo forte» for voice, violin and continuo

Domenico Scarlatti (1685-1757)

from Ottavia restituita al trono: «Ecco o stelle» for voice and continuo

Carlo Ambrogio Lonati (1645-c. 1710)

Adagio from Sinfonia a treper for two violins and continuo

Adriana, Giulia and Anna Maria, ‘puttane’ in musica.

by Angela Di Maso


In the dictionary of the Italian language Treccani the word puttana is explained as follows: puttana derives from the old French putain, meaning “woman of easy virtue”.This is certainly the meaning best known to us. Still in Treccani, however, we read that the term is used to indicate a dishonest, cunning, corrupt, unscrupulous person, capable of carrying out any action in order to achieve their goals.


It does not end here!


To these, the encyclopedia adds yet another meaning: amoral female or male  – it is interesting how there is no gender distinction while in common culture and morality we are used to referring this term only to females -who adapts to circumstances out of interest by changing his/her mind  with extreme lightness and speed; panderers in order to get what they want.




Adriana Basile, Giulia De Caro and Anna Maria Scarlatti, our very famous harmonics of the Kingdom of Naples, contain all these meanings in their lives as women and artists.

They are bitches, yes, but in music, because all they did was out of love for music, in which art they had to not only excel, but be recognized. Convinced. Proud; even in the specific case of De Caro, proud to be the protagonist of a satirical poem in which a disappointed lover narrates her nymphomaniac deeds.

But it is the shrewdness combined with the audacity for the recognition in esteem and fame of their art that interests much more than the sexual appetite.

My dramaturgy was born from the reading of historical documents combined with the essays of the musicologists Maione and D’Alessandro in which the ascent of these women towards musical success is strongly evident – they were singers of undoubted ability and this is evident from the admiration that the best composers and musicians of the time felt for them, so much that they dedicated their works to them – by any means they had at their disposal and that therefore went far beyond the vocal qualities alone, to walk paths that were not long and tortuous, but short and golden.

But the world was then as it is now.

Anyway, stories of great passions, of palace intrigues, in which duke, viceroy and cardinals had become puppets in their hands, bewitched by women who knew they were capable but above all beautiful and fascinating.

Cristina Donadio is Adriana, Giulia and Anna Maria.

Through her voice the famous harmonics will come to life taking us by the hand and presenting us with music and songs that will accompany the tales of their fortunate and unfortunate lives at the same time, telling us of a century, such as the 17th century in the Kingdom of Naples, which for vices and virtues never seems to have passed to this day.


Angela Di Maso

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