Pizzica Dance
Woman performing the Pizzica

A long standing traditional folk dance in the Puglian region is the Pizzica. Its origins are believed to be derived from the Tarantella dance which was performed by people who had been bitten by a deadly tarantula. It is believed that the poison sent people into a hysterical dance, and that sweating it out by dancing and stomping formed a sort of exorcism which eliminated the symptoms of the poison.

The Pizzica expresses forms of the Tarantella but the difference between the two is that the Pizzica is usually performed by a couple in an entangled romantic embrace. The woman is often dressed in white, signifying a bride, and dancing with a handkerchief or a scarf. For a more dramatic effect, a group of dancers take to the centre stage.

The Pizzica is more elegant with an up beat tempo, and is usually accompanied by a guitar, a mandolin, an accordion and tambourines.

If you have never seen this dance being performed before, check out this video. The Salientes Dance Group perform the Pizzica in dramatic style, in the beautiful walled City of Ostuni.
Salientes Pizzica video – http://youtu.be/u8D6G1csDn8

12 responses to “Pizzica”

  1. […] the Piazza, a small band was playing local Pizzica music, and revellers were dancing with enthusiasm. The air was filled with happiness, and the smell […]


  2. […] in the town called ‘Rezzica’ which is actually a dual event for the Rezze and the Pizzica. Both originated in San Vito Dei […]


  3. […] merry, the sound of music filled the air as a local duo began playing the unmistakable sound of the Pizzica. This traditional Folk music is synonymous with Puglia, and the art of the Pizzica is still taught […]


  4. […] Traditional Pugliese folk music and dancing: Pizzica. […]


  5. […] her beautiful smile, harmonica and folk songs. After a few songs Daniela was keen to get the ‘Pizzica party’ started! She demonstrated a few simple steps, and encouraged every one to join in. They did, shyly […]


  6. […] salami, polpette, parmigiana, a couple of young teenagers started to entertain us with traditional Pizzica music. Wow, I wasn’t expecting that! With just a harmonica, tambourine and a set of castanets, […]


  7. […] are Sagras, festivals, live music, huge concerts, art exhibits, traditional folk music and dancing (Pizzica), and most of the time, you’re spolit for choice; what to do and where to go! Most of these […]


  8. […] the band and I could see a the crowd of people gathering down the street to listen to the energetic Pizzica music. I was perfectly located to listen to the music, watch the locals enjoy a good old knees up […]


  9. […] trance-like dance called tarantella. This mystical affliction continues today with the contemporary pizzica dance and music festivals all summer long, where you can see the dance performed. Young women in flowing […]


  10. […] Citta Bianca. A young, energetic and extremely passionate group who enthused the crowd with their Pizzica folk music and dancing. After a couple of performances by the group, it was time to warm up the crowd on this […]


  11. […] a relaxing afternoon under the shade of the olive trees, whilst listening and watching traditional Pizzica music and dancing and taste some of Puglia’s award winning […]


  12. […] a relaxing afternoon under the shade of the olive trees, whilst listening and watching traditional Pizzica music and dancing, and taste some of Puglia’s award winning […]


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