In 1961 Lavagnino was one of the busiest Italian film composers and scored more than a dozen films throughout that year, most of them historical epics or costume pictures which almost always demanded quite an amount of music. Despite this frenetic activity his melodic inspiration almost never ceased, and the score for I BRIGANTI ITALIANI is no exception to this rule.
The “Main Title” immediately grabs the listener’s attention with an ear-catching brisk and stirring theme for full orchestra and mixed chorus. This music exudes a fabulous spirit of adventure and would also be suited for a Western story. Although the theme mainly represents Sante’s fight for liberty and the rides of his band along the rugged Campanian countryside, it is highly adaptable and can be used in manifold ways to describe different moods and various situations. The braggart and ladies’ man Vincenzino, who during the first half of the movie is always surrounded by his own small troupe of bandits, gets his own sly musical theme which is best heard in “Viva l’Italia” when they start their ramblings through the country in an almost Don Quixotian-like manner.
During the second half the movie changes its tone and strikes a more tragic note. The fierce battle scenes are scored with propulsive and exciting action music not unlike the ones used by Lavagnino for his peplum scores. After the defeat, the longest musical sequence in the film appears (“Vincenzino and Sante”) where we get to hear a new pastoral and nostalgic theme which is mainly intoned by solo oboe and then extended until in the end an almost religious atmosphere is achieved.
We hope that many fans of the composer and of classic Italian film music can now enjoy for the first time ever on CD the splendid beauty of this exciting symphonic film score.
This CD edition with a 12-page booklet will be limited to 400 copies.
1. Main Title 1:42
2. Vincenzino Esposito 0:37
3. Vincenzino Esposito and Mariantonia 3:21
4. Sante Carbone and Colonel Breviglieri / Sante Carbone and Assunta Pescatore 1:28
5. Vincenzino Esposito (Unused) 1:36
6. Viva l'Italia 1:45
7. Chicchirichi (Traditional Folk Song) 1:24
8. Escape / Sante Carbone 1:12
9. Reprisal 3:12
10. Sante and Assunta 2:47
11. Vincenzino and the Marchioness 2:48
12. On the Move (1) 1:24
13. Battle 2:55
14. Death of Chattone 0:47
15. Colonel Breviglieri and Baron La Mazza 1:04
16. On the Move (2) 1:05
17. Vincenzino and Sante 6:28
18. Vincenzino Goes to Stigliano 1:05
19. Sante and Assunta 2:28
20. Finale and End Cast 2:31
21. Finale (Alternate Take) 0:46
22. Interview with A. F. Lavagnino (from 1986) 3:25