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Santa Lucia is a traditional Neapolitan song. It was transcribed by Teodoro Cottrau (1827–1879) and published by the Cottrau firm, as a "barcarolla", at Naples in 1849. Cottrau translated it from Napuletano into Italian during the first stage of the Risorgimento, the first Neapolitan song to be given Italian lyrics. Its transcriber, who is very often credited as its composer, was the son of the French-born Italian composer and collector of songs Guillaume Louis Cottrau (1797–1847).

The Neapolitan lyrics of "Santa Lucia" celebrate the picturesque waterfront district, Borgo Santa Lucia, in the Bay of Naples, in the invitation of a boatman to take a turn in his boat, to better enjoy the cool of the evening.

In the United States, an early edition of the song, with an English translation by Thomas Oliphant, was published by M. McCaffrey, Baltimore. Perhaps the definitive 20th century recording of the song was that of Enrico Caruso, the great Neapolitan opera singer.

The song has also been recorded by Elvis Presley on the 1965 album Elvis for Everyone.

In Sweden, Denmark and Norway, "Santa Lucia" has been given various lyrics to accommodate it to the winter-light festival of Saint Lucy, at the darkest time of the year. The three most famous lyrics versions in Swedish are Luciasången, aka Sankta Lucia, ljusklara hägring (“Saint Lucy, bright illusion”), Natten går tunga fjät (“The night walks with heavy steps”) and the 1970s "Kindergarten" version Ute är mörkt och kallt (“Outside it’s dark and cold”).

In the Czech Republic (or former Czechoslovakia), it was made famous with the words Krásná je Neapol sung by Waldemar Matuška.

In Thailand the song became the anthem of Silpakorn University, as the founder of the university, Corrado Feroci, or later called Silpa Bhirasri, was Italian. But only the first verse is sung. The song is also sung in Thai. The title of the Thai version of the song is Silpakorn Niyom (ศิลปากรนิยม).

Original Neapolitan Lyrics

Sul mare luccica l’astro d’argento.
Placida è l’onda, prospero è il vento.
Sul mare luccica l’astro d’argento.
Placida è l’onda, prospero è il vento.
Venite all’agile barchetta mia,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!
Venite all’agile barchetta mia,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Con questo zeffiro, così soave,
Oh, com’è bello star sulla nave!
Con questo zeffiro, così soave,
Oh, com’è bello star sulla nave!
Su passegieri, venite via!
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!
Su passegieri, venite via!
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

In fra le tende, bandir la cena
In una sera così serena,
In fra le tende, bandir la cena
In una sera così serena,
Chi non dimanda, chi non desia.
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!
Chi non dimanda, chi non desia.
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Mare sì placida, vento sì caro,
Scordar fa i triboli al marinaro,
Mare sì placida, vento sì caro,
Scordar fa i triboli al marinaro,
E va gridando con allegria,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!
E va gridando con allegria,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

O dolce Napoli, o suol beato,
Ove sorridere volle il creato,
O dolce Napoli, o suol beato,
Ove sorridere volle il creato,
Tu sei l'impero dell’armonia,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!
Tu sei l'impero dell’armonia,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Or che tardate? Bella è la sera.
Spira un’auretta fresca e leggiera.
Or che tardate? Bella è la sera.
Spira un’auretta fresca e leggiera.
Venite all’agile barchetta mia,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!
Venite all’agile barchetta mia,
Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Other performers & External links

One of the notable versions of this song is the one by Hayley Westenra in her album Treasure (Hayley Westenra album).

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Santa Lucia is a traditional Neapolitan song. It was transcribed by Teodoro Cottrau (1827–1879) and published by the Cottrau firm, as a "barcarolla", at Naples in 1849. Cottrau translated it from Napuletano into Italian during the first stage of the Risorgimento, the first Neapolitan song to be given Italian lyrics. Its transcriber, who is very often credited as its composer, was the son of the French-born Italian composer and collector of songs Guillaume Louis Cottrau (1797–1847).

The Neapolitan lyrics of "Santa Lucia" celebrate the picturesque waterfront district, Borgo Santa Lucia, in the Bay of Naples, in the invitation of a boatman to take a turn in his boat, to better enjoy the cool of the evening.

In the United States, an early edition of the song, with an English translation by Thomas Oliphant, was published by M. McCaffrey, Baltimore. Perhaps the definitive 20th century recording of the song was that of Enrico Caruso, the great Neapolitan opera singer.

The song has also been recorded by Elvis Presley on the 1965 album Elvis for Everyone.

In Sweden, Denmark and Norway, "Santa Lucia" has been given various lyrics to accommodate it to the winter-light festival of Saint Lucy, at the darkest time of the year. The three most famous lyrics versions in Swedish are Luciasången, aka Sankta Lucia, ljusklara hägring (“Saint Lucy, bright illusion”), Natten går tunga fjät (“The night walks with heavy steps”) and the 1970s "Kindergarten" version Ute är mörkt och kallt (“Outside it’s dark and cold”).

In the Czech Republic (or former Czechoslovakia), it was made famous with the words Krásná je Neapol sung by Waldemar Matuška.

In Thailand the song became the anthem of Silpakorn University, as the founder of the university, Corrado Feroci, or later called Silpa Bhirasri, was Italian. But only the first verse is sung. The song is also sung in Thai. The title of the Thai version of the song is Silpakorn Niyom (ศิลปากรนิยม).

The song is well-known to fans of The Andy Griffith Show for its appearance in the episode, "The Song Festers." It is the feature song of the arrangement the Mayberry choir "sent off to New York" to order for its annual spring concert.

Film Music

The song has appeared as film music. It was performed by Elvis Presley in Viva Las Vegas, and it can be heard in the Marx Brothers film A Night at the Opera. Also note that the end of the song is chanted by Jack and David as they are walking in the rain in the english countryside in American Werewolf in London.

Original Neapolitan Lyrics

Sul mare luccica l’astro d’argento. Placida è l’onda, prospero è il vento. Sul mare luccica l’astro d’argento. Placida è l’onda, prospero è il vento. Venite all’agile barchetta mia, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia! Venite all’agile barchetta mia, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Con questo zeffiro, così soave, Oh, com’è bello star sulla nave! Con questo zeffiro, così soave, Oh, com’è bello star sulla nave! Su passegieri, venite via! Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia! Su passegieri, venite via! Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

In fra le tende, bandir la cena In una sera così serena, In fra le tende, bandir la cena In una sera così serena, Chi non dimanda, chi non desia. Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia! Chi non dimanda, chi non desia. Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Mare sì placida, vento sì caro, Scordar fa i triboli al marinaro, Mare sì placida, vento sì caro, Scordar fa i triboli al marinaro, E va gridando con allegria, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia! E va gridando con allegria, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

O dolce Napoli, o suol beato, Ove sorridere volle il creato, O dolce Napoli, o suol beato, Ove sorridere volle il creato, Tu sei l'impero dell’armonia, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia! Tu sei l'impero dell’armonia, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Or che tardate? Bella è la sera trupleclax. Spira un’auretta fresca e leggiera. Or che tardate? Bella è la sera. Spira un’auretta fresca e leggiera. Venite all’agile barchetta mia, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia! Venite all’agile barchetta mia, Santa Lucia! Santa Lucia!

Other performers & External links

One of the notable versions of this song is the one by Hayley Westenra in her album Treasure (Hayley Westenra album).


Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Italian

Wikipedia-logo.png
Italian Wikipedia has an article on:
Santa Lucia

Wikipedia it

Proper noun

Santa Lucia f.

  1. Saint Lucia

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