Rediscovering Donnacirco, the First Italian Feminist Album

Donnacirco is the name of the first feminist album ever made in Italy, composed in 1974 but unfortunately never released. After almost 50 years, a group of 12 female musicians and performers have decided to re-record the album, which tells of women’s struggles in the Seventies, through the metaphor of the circus.

Donnacirco logo by Francesca Ghermandi

Donnacirco logo by Francesca Ghermandi

On Friday, March 26 at 7:30 pm CET, as part of Women’s Month celebrations, the London Feminist Library is hosting a Zoom event presenting the album, which will be released in 2021, and tracing its history – from the first to the second version – with interviews and live performances.

JCU communications professor Erika Tasini is currently making a documentary about this musical journey and will be showing a demo during the event. The demo was edited by Prof. Chloe Barreau, with translations by Prof. Allison Grimaldi Donahue.

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This album was originally composed by Paola Pallottino (the songwriter of Lucio Dalla’s 4 Marzo 1943) for the jazz singer Gianfranca Montedoro. It was an album that used the metaphor of circus (hence the name Donnacirco) to explore different facets of female identity. BASF, the record company that produced it never distributed the record, so, after almost 50 years, 12 Bologna-based singers and musicians, including Angela Baraldi, Suz, and Vittoria Burattini, joined forces to re-record and release it.

Says Professor Tasini, “Ever since I was a child I wanted to be a musician but never felt cool enough to join a band, so I fell in love with cinema. Yet, my passion for music kept growing. I also developed a strong interest in gender-related issues. When Suz, the organizer of this project and a friend, told me about the re-recording of Donnacirco, I found the perfect way to make music, with the co-protagonists of my documentary, through cinema. I really want to thank my colleagues Prof. Grimaldi Donahue for her translation work and Prof. Chloe Barreau, who was truly instrumental in making this project happen. It was a JCU feminist labor of love!”

Learn more about Donnacirco.

Register for the event.

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