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In Celebration of Father's Day: The Hauntingly Beautiful "Torna A Surriento"

Alexa's picture

[Video Credit: The Platin Tenors, Torna A Surriento--Andre Rieu, YouTube, alcv38]

This Neopolitan song, which is believed to have been written in 1902 by Ernesto De Curtis, is performed by "The Platin Tenors," accompanied by the Johann Strauss Orchestra and Chorus under the direction of Dutch Conductor/Composer/Violinist Andre Rieu.

The tenors are (L to R): Gary Bennett (Australia, Island of Tasmania), Bela Mavrak (Hungary), and Thomas Greuel (Germany).


This video clip is from a PBS Special at the famed Radio City Music Hall in New York City. It aired as part of the PBS Channel's Christmas programming, several years ago.

So, I enthusiastically present this impressive rendition of "Torna A Surriento" in honor of all Dads--of kids of both two- and four-legged varieties.

"Torna a Surriento" (Neapolitan Lyrics)

Vir 'o mare quant’è bello,

Ispira tantu sentimento,

Comme tu a chi tiene a' mente,

Ca scetato 'o faie sunnà.

Guarda gua' chistu ciardino;

Siente, sie’ sti sciure arance:

Nu profumo accussi fino

Dinto 'o core se ne va…

E tu dice: "I’ parto, addio!"

T’alluntane da stu core…

Da sta terra de l’ammore…

Tiene 'o core 'e nun turnà?

Ma nun me lassà,

Nun darme stu turmiento!

Torna a Surriento,

famme campà!

Vir 'o mare de Surriento,

che tesoro tene nfunno:

chi ha girato tutto 'o munno

nun l'ha visto comm'a ccà.

Guarda attuorno sti Serene,

ca te guardano 'ncantate,

e te vonno tantu bene...

Te vulessero vasà.

E tu dice: "I' parto, addio!"

T'alluntane da stu core

Da la terra de l'ammore

Tiene 'o core 'e nun turnà?

Ma nun me lassà,

Nun darme stu turmiento!

Torna a Surriento,

Famme campà!

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Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

you know that it's actually possible to "revise" 4 sentences 15-20 times, LOL?

Seriously, I realized that I used the word "beautiful" (including the title), three times--Yikes!

Anyway, tried to "clean it up" a little

Must have been a "Freudian Slip"--both Mr. Alexa and I really do enjoy their music. And while I must admit that some of Rieu's productions are a bit over-the-top, and could do with less glitz, etc., he does have several excellent sopranos and tenors (as well as musicians) who tour with him. And frankly, I sort of envy his musicians being able to have a very relaxed comportment, and actually "show" that they are enjoying the performance.

As an aside, I saw a video of Rieu "setting up" a concert in Munich (the production end, I'm talking about).

Maybe I shouldn't have been surprised, but there is a "minder" or "keeper" for his Stradivarius violin. The guy was never far from Rieu. Of course, it's very noticeable that unlike some conductors, Rieu's violin never leaves his hands, during any concert or program.

No wonder. It is the second violin that Antonio Stradivarius produced (he made musical instruments from 1666-1737). Apparently, Rieu's violin was made in 1667, when Stradivarius was only 23 years old.

What I wouldn't give to have a piano or euphonium "on par" with his violin. [I guess I can dream. :-)]